Sex and Gasoline by Rodney Crowell

Sex and Gasoline is the thirteenth studio album by American country music singer Rodney Crowell released September 2, 2008, on the Work Song/Yep Roc Records label.  This eleven-track album of all original songs with a country/Americana feel showcases his amazing voice and songwriting style on such songs as the title track Sex and Gasoline, The Rise And Fall Of Intelligent Design, Funky And The Farm Boy, Closer To Heaven and so much more.  I have been a fan of his work from back in the 80s and his voice is still as strong as ever.  This album was well written, recorded and performed plus is available in CD and digital download from Amazon, Bandcamp and other outlets where music is sold.

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A Cape Breton Christmas by Ashley MacIsaac

Ashley MacIsaac, one of Canada’s premier contemporary Celtic fiddlers releases this charming if a not rhythmically explosive tribute to the holiday season with the release A Cape Breton Christmas, originally released on June 6, 1993, and re-released January 8, 2007, on the Linus Entertainment Records label.  She is joined by Scott MacMillan on guitar and keyboards, Aurelie Cormier on vocals, Jim Faraday on percussion, Jeff McDonald on vocals, and Alan MacKenzie on pipes.  This ten-track album features the tracks Twas The Night Before Christmas/The Devil In The Kitchen, Fiddle Medley, Christmas Jugs And Reels…Midnight Clearance Sale, God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen and much more. I was impressed with how this album was arranged, performed and recorded.  It is refreshing to hear a different style of holiday classics.  This release is available on CD and digital download from Amazon, Itunes, Discogs and many other outlets where music is sold.

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Stony Plain’s Christmas Blues by Various Artists

Stony Plain’s Christmas Blues, a various-artists collection released December 28, 1999, on the Stony Plain Records label brings us a bluesy sound of holiday music. These fourteen tracks are upbeat, cheerful Yuletide tunes such as Dukes Christmas by Duke Robillard, Switchin In The Kitchen by Asleep At The Wheel, No Money No Honey by Maria Muldaur, Christmas Blues by Jimmy Witherspoon, Mama by David Wilcox and so much more.  There is not a single bad song in this compilation which was well written, recorded, and performed. This album is a great addition to one’s Christmas music library, especially when you get tired of hearing to the same albums year after year.  This great compilation is available on CD and digital download formats from Amazon, Discogs, Stony Plain Records, and many other music outlets.

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Crosby, Stills & Nash by Crosby, Stills& Nash

Crosby, Stills & Nash is the debut self-titled album by Crosby, Stills & Nash, released on May 26, 1969, fifty years ago on the Atlantic Records label.  This trio consists of Stephen Stills who was a member of Buffalo Springfield, David Crosby who was a member of The Byrds and Graham Nash who was a member of The Hollies.  This album spawned two top forty singles Suite: Judy Blue Eyes that they performed live in 1969 at Woodstock and the second song Marrakesh Express.  This is my favorite among their earlier albums with notable tracks such as Wooden Ships, Long Time Gone, Helplessly Hoping and so much more.  Stills dominated the recording of the album with him playing the bass, organ, and lead guitar parts and Crosby and Nash played guitar on their own songs respectively.  They brought in Dallas Taylor and Jim Gordon to play the drums on this album.  All three members shared songwriting and lead vocal credits on this album plus they won the Grammy for Best New Artist in 1970.  This album demonstrated superb recording and performance with amazing vocals and harmonies and is an album you will want to add to your record library.  This album is still available in CD and Vinyl format from many music outlets.

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GRRR by The Rolling Stones

On the 76th birthday of Rolling Stone guitarist Keith Richards, I want to present GRRR!, which is a five-album vinyl greatest hits compilation by The Rolling Stones which was released 12 November 2012 and commemorates the band’s 50th anniversary on the ABKCO/Interscope Records label.  This compilation features their greatest hits over the past fifty years plus two new tracks Doom And Gloom and One More Shot.  All current and former members are featured in this compilation including Mick Jagger on lead vocals, harmonica, guitars, and keyboards, Keith Richards on acoustic and electric guitars, keyboards and bass, Charlie Watts on drums, the late Brian Jones on guitars, harmonica and keyboards, Bill Wyman on bass, Mick Taylor on guitars and backing vocals, and Ronnie Wood on guitars and backing vocals.  This eighty track collection features tracks from their early days such as a Beatles cover I Wanna Be Your Man, Little Red Rooster, and Not Fade Away (A Buddy Holly Cover) moving on to their first hits I Can’t Get No Satisfaction, Time On My Side, Paint It Black, As Tears Go By and much more then going to hits of later 60s and 70s such as Jumping Jack Flash, Honky Tonk Woman, Brown Sugar, Its Only Rock And Roll (But I like It) and much more.  The 80s brought us such hits as Start Me Up, Waiting On A Friend, Harlem Shuffle, Rock In A Hard Place and many others.  The nineties brought us Almost Hear You Sigh, Highwire, Love Is Strong and many others with the new century entertaining us with Rough Justice, Streets Of Love and much more.  About every song we have learned to love over those fifty years is represented in this compilation and shows this band’s growth from a local unknown band in England to a band that is known and loved all over the world.  I am very impressed with how this collection was compiled, written, performed and recorded.  This compilation is still available as a five Vinyl LP or a three-CD collection from Amazon, Discogs, and many other music outlets.

The Ultimate Sin by Ozzy Osbourne

The Ultimate Sin is the fourth studio album by British heavy metal vocalist and former Black Sabbath frontman Ozzy Osbourne released 22 February 1986 on the Epic/CBS Records label.  The band lineup on this great album is Ozzy Osbourne on vocals, joined by Jake E. Lee on guitar (this album is his final performance with Ozzy), Phil Soussan on bass (first and only Osbourne album to feature this bassist, who co-wrote the album’s hit single Shot in the Dark) and drummer Randy Castillo (in his recording debut with Ozzy).  This nine-track album features tracks written by guitarist Jake E. Lee who refused to contribute anything to this album unless there was a contract giving him writing credit on this album, unlike what happened with Ozzy’s last album Bark At The Moon where Ozzy got all the writing credit.  Only two singles were released from this album, the first being Shot In The Dark which also had a great video that got a lot of MTV play, and the title track The Ultimate Sin.  Other notable tracks on this album are Never Know Why, Killer Of Giants, Never and much more.  I really enjoyed this album with its great songwriting, performance, and recording.  This is definitely an album you will want to add to your music collection which is available on Vinyl, CD and digital download from Amazon, Discogs, Itunes, and other music outlets.

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Brother To Brother by Gino Vannelli

I have noticed this morning that many of my recent reviews have been for Canadian artists.  After I put this album on my turntable and started listening to this one and doing research, I find out that this artist is Canadian also.  Brother to Brother is the sixth studio album by Canadian singer Gino Vannelli, which was released in September 1978 on the A&M Records label.  I became hooked on his powerful voice and singing style back as well as his brother Joe Vannelli’s keyboard work in 1976 when he released the album Gist Of The Gemini.  The first track that caught my attention on this album Appaloosa shows Gino’s energetic performance and amazing vocals and is my favorite track on this album.  The only track on this album that hit the charts was his ballad I Just Wanna Stop, even though there other tracks on this album that were chart worthy such as The River Must Flow, the title track Brother To Brother, Wheels Of Life and much more.  I was quite impressed by the songwriting style on this album as well as the performance and recording.  This is definitely an album you would want to add to your music library and you can still find a copy of this album in Vinyl, CD and digital download format from Amazon, Discogs, Itunes, and many other outlets. You can find more about this amazing artist, his tour schedule and his music from his official website http://ginov.com

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Live From the Phoenix Theatre by Matt Andersen

Live From the Phoenix Theatre is the  June 29, 2010 album and my fifth review for Matt Andersen, a Canadian blues guitarist and singer-songwriter from Perth-Andover, New Brunswick which was re-released April 1, 2014, on the True North Records label.  This thirteen track album showcases Matt’s great guitar work and vocals on such tracks as Better Man Blues, I Play The Fool For You, Bold And Beaten, Devil’s Bride, Round And Round and so much more.  I enjoyed this live performance from start to finish with great songwriting and an excellent recording.  If you are a major blues fan as I am, you will definitely want to add this great recording to your music library which is available on CD and digital download from Amazon, CD Baby, Itunes, and many other music outlets.  You can learn more about this great blues artist, his music and his tour schedule by going to his official website http://www.stubbyfingers.ca

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Shaved Fish by John Lennon

Shaved Fish is a compilation album by John Lennon and the Plastic Ono Band, issued on October 20, 1975, from Apple Records. It contains all of the singles that he had issued up to that point in the United States as a solo artist and is the only compilation of Lennon’s non-Beatles recordings released during his lifetime.  This eleven-track album features such great hits as Imagine, Mind Games, Instant Karma, Give Peace A Chance, my favorite Christmas song of all time Happy Xmas (War Is Over) and so much more.  This compilation was well written, recorded and performed.  If you were only able to add one John Lennon record to your library, this should be the one.  This great compilation is still available on Vinyl, CD and digital download from Amazon, Discogs, and many other music outlets

The Universe Of John Lennon by Michael Occhipinti & Shine On Feat. Elizabeth Shepherd

The Universe Of John Lennon is the June 19, 2012 jazz release by Michael Occhipinti & Shine On Feat. Elizabeth Shepherd on the True North Records label.  The all-star lineup collectively boasts over 20 JUNO Award nominations and includes the unique voices of Elizabeth Shepherd, Yvette Tollar, and Dominic Mancuso, paired with the instrumental talents of Mark Kelso (drums/vocals), Roberto Occhipinti (bass), Kevin Turcotte (trumpet), and Michael  Occhipinti (guitar/vocals).  This album features the takes on I Am The Walrus and Working Class Hero featuring Elizabeth Shepherd’s amazing vocals, to Yvette Tollar’s awesome version of I’m Only Sleeping, Dominic Mancuso’s earthy Instant Karma, and  Michael’s own creative palette of guitar sounds.  This album also features such great tracks as Rain, Don’t Let Me Down, Across The Universe and so much more.  These musicians gave a great jazz interpretation of the music of John Lennon as well as a great performance and recording.  This recording is available in CD and digital download from Amazon, Itunes, and many other music outlets

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