Alabama boy (CD 2005)

Musicians :

Kunio Kishida – electric & acoustic guitars, dobro & vocals
Pete Carr – electric guitar
Jerry Wasley Jr. - bass
Chuck Leavell - piano
Paul Hornsby – organ Hammond B-3 (toutes pistes sauf 8)
Bobby Whitlock – organ Hammond B-3 (piste 8)
Jamie Oldaker - drums
Mickey Buckins - percussion
Bonnie Bramlett - duet & background vocals
Scott Boyer - duet vocals & background vocals
Carla Russell - background vocals (pistes 2, 3, 5, 9, 10, 11)
Produced by Johnny Sandlin

Titles :
1 - Alabama Boy
2 - Celebration / Sadness
3 - Miss Your Dimples
4 - Don't Leave Me Please
5 - I'll Leave My Home
6 - Live In Hope
7 - N.A. City Woman
8 - Right Place
9 - Don't Say Nothing
10 - Sendai
11 - What Will Be Will Be
12 - You Knock Me Out

So OK, we are a little bit late about this album, but it deserves our attention. This man is not an original Southern rocker, but for some years now, he presents us some great Southern albums. Songs, he all wrote, are really great, even if the lyrics are always about men-women relationships, Kunio is a good guitar player with an interesting slide play. He gathered with him good Muscle Shoals musicians and he recorded his album there with a deep energy (How good Chuck Leavell is !). But this album is not as enthusiastic as it should be. So you guess it, there’s a problem. And this problem is about the lyrics that Kunio wants to sing. He doesn’t really sing bad, but his voice is not good enough to bring colours to his songs. Sometimes he is really out of key. He should have taken a real singer and only sing the choruses. Maybe with a lot of work and some tour, he could be better when he sings –as we could see with Dave Hole- but now his voice is too weak on that album that however gets a good production.

However this album is pleasant with its Rhythm n’ Blues roots played by the guest musicians, and some songs are really great, like the dynamic ‘Live in Hope’. That’s why the lack of a real singer is really pity, even if Kunio’s work is nice. On every song he introduces his guitars : his 1959 Les Paul Std sunburst is called Nancy, and he rent some guitars, a 1954 Fender Stratocaster sunburst, a 1963 sunburst, a 1959 Gibson J-45, a 1967 Martin D-28 National and even a 60s Coral Sitar. He also played a 1957 Precision bass guitar. That’s interesting for people who want to know the instruments and amps sounds. This man is a passionate and he can play beautiful songs to our ears, and, even the voice weakness, why don’t you try to listen to his job ? Music worth it and this man will sure become great and famous.

Yves Philippot

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