Dirty Blues Band

Stone Dirt

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For their second album, a revised version of the Dirty Blues Band cut ten excellent numbers in a single session in April of 1968, which actually yielded more satisfying results than the original group's earlier debut LP. Rod Piazza is not only in great voice (as is his harmonica), but this version of the band -- with Rick Lunetta on guitar, Greg Anderson on bass, and Dave Miter on drums, plus Pat Maloney on piano and organ and reedmen Jimmy Forrest and Willie Green, with Freddie Hill on trumpet -- seems a lot more comfortable here. The music surges and flows, and this reviewer -- who is not usually partial to blues bands with horns -- found himself swept along with Piazza's work on standards by Willie Dixon ("Bring It on Home," "I Can't Quit You Baby"), John Lee Hooker ("It's My Own Fault Baby"), as well as originals such as "Tell Me" and "She's the One." In fact, the highlight of the album is his "Sittin' Down Wonderin'," where Piazza and company sound uncannily like Albert King, and Lunetta takes a killer solo around Maloney's brilliantly understated organ fills. And mostly the reeds and trumpet are used with admirable restraint where they turn up at all, most successfully on a soaring rendition of "You've Got to Love Her with a Feeling." The one pity is that the band didn't last long enough to capitalize on any success that this album might have seen, because one suspects that would have been considerable, at the time.

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