Friday, February 8, 2008

Review -- RONNIE EARL & DUKE ROBILLARD -- The Duke Meets The Earl

THE DUKE MEETS THE EARL
Ronnie Earl & Duke Robillard
Stony Plain Records
9.5-out-of-10

When you are talking the blues the names Duke Robillard and Ronnie Earl are likely to come up pretty quickly when the discussion turns to contemporary musicians. Robillard, as a guitar guru has more CD credits than most artists could ever dream of, and Earl himself is an accomplished performer on the guitar too.
So, what do you get when two guitar slingers come together to record? Well folks, if you like guitar-based blues you get a five-star treat.
These two hit the studio running, opening the CD with a near eight-minute rendition of Robillard's West Side Shuffle that is a pure delight. WOW! These two cook right from the get go. The two guitarists are a perfect compliment to one another.
What makes this such a pure delight is the way Robillard and Earl just let the music flow, exploring the songs, and their interpretations of those songs, through long weaving, improvisational efforts.
My Tears comes in at seven seconds under 16 minutes. What a sweet ride this one is.
Zeb's Thing, a piece by Earl again punches past seven minutes, I Need You So Bad past eight, and A Soul That's Been Abused, again by Earl, beyond 13 minutes. You have to love it when the blues is allowed to flow so freely at the hands of two accomplished guitar players like Robillard and Earl.
This is basically an instrumental effort, which is just fine since these two are known for their guitar work above all else.
This is a must for blues lovers. Check it out at www.stonyplainrecords.com
-- CALVIN DANIELS

-- Review first appeared in Yorkton This Week newspaper Feb. 6, 2008 - Yorkton, SK. Canada

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