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Mike Henderson & the Bluebloods
First Blood,  Dead Reckoning CD 0006

Blues with hats

The Bluebloods’ debut effort is a knock-your-socks off collection of blues standards performed in respectfully modernized arrangements. This is a bar band supreme, as recognized by the liner notes author, Mark Knopfler. It’s pretty rare these days for a band to start out with an album of covers, but sometimes you wish a lot more bands did. The choice what to cover is always interesting , and the ‘bloods are no exception. "Pay Bo Diddley"? While you surely admire the sentiment, why this odd corner of the Diddley canon? Who knows, or cares, when you’ve got a band chunking out that Bo Diddley beat with the fervor these guys do. "Give Me Back My Wig"?–I never understood where that song was coming from, but again, the Bluebloods rock it out with a vengeance.

The set spans the blues spectrum, and Henderson practically squeezes tears from his guitar on "When the Welfare Turns its Back on You". The instrumentation is vintage, with Silvertone guitar and upright bass, and you can practically smell the overheated tubes on some of these numbers. Reese Wyans played piano for Stevie Ray Vaughn, and shows off some fine licks on "So Sad to Be Lonesome." If you’re lucky enough to have the Bluebloods playing in a nearby tavern, don’t pass the chance to see these guys live. Till then, slide  First Blood into the CD tray, and settle back for some fine blues.–  Bill Kuhn


John Gardner, drums; Mike Henderson, guitar, harmonic, vocals; Reese Wyans, piano; Glenn Worf, bass.

song titles

When I Get Drunk • So Sad to be Lonesome • Hip Shakin’ • Pony Blues • Bloody Murder • Pay Bo Diddley • When the Welfare Turns its Back on You • Give Me Back My Wig • How Many More Years • Mean Mistreater

Copyright © 1997 Peppercorn Press. All rights reserved.