Monday, July 8, 2013

Album Review: "Blues For Jimi" by Gary Moore

There are still a great many artists out there that I am trying hear what the others hear. Gary Moore fits into this list. Seeing his name bandied about on guitar forums and on the head stocks of signature model Les Pauls caught my attention.

Turns out he was a solo artist and a member of Thin Lizzy for a time. These things took me completely unaware. He is also mentioned frequently in interviews I've read in Guitar World. If he sets so many other guitarists, including high level pros, then this is someone who should stop being unknown to me. 

He's also another in the legion of white guitarists who love the blues and obviously he's rather adept at it. The more and more I hear, the more and more I realize that I need to give this man a full listening. "Blues For Jimi" is something that Amazon has recommended to me over and over, so maybe there is something to this. It was recorded in 2007 at a special tribute to Jimi Hendrix, obviously.

It appears that Mr. Moore, like basically every guitarist since 1967, was a devotee of Mr. Hendrix. There is no faulting this at all.

The best thing about this concert is that Gary is joined onstage by Mitch Mitchell and Billy Cox for three of the twelve songs he and his band played that evening. No word as to why it was Billy and not Noel Redding. (ha, ha)

It would appear that Gary was mostly a fan of the first Jimi Hendrix Experience album as all but three of the songs were from "Are You Experienced?" and one of those three was a less than a minute noodling written by him.

It's very hard to really review this album for me. What should be considered? Gary's playing? Gary's attention to Jimi's details? During the seventy three plus minutes, Gary deftly recreates the guitar lines that Jimi recorded originally in the late 1960's. For the vast majority of the time, there is almost even no tonal differences, at least for the untrained ears. What I found lacking was Jimi's signature noodling on during his live performances. The setlist seemed to be a bit, lacking as well, but as stated right before they played "Voodoo Chile," it would appear that he played all the Jimi tunes he knew. So it really is hard to fault him for that.

In a very special part of the concert, the last rhythm section Jimi had during his life came and played "Red House," "Stone Free," and "Hey Joe" with Gary. This might be one of the coolest things that could happen at a show honoring Mr. Hendrix. Not that I'm the Billy Cox and Mitch Mitchell source, but I do not know of them doing this at any other time, much less appearing on record to do so.

All in all, this is a fun show to listen to, but if you're like me and trying to get into Gary Moore, this isn't the place to start. This is a concert where he honors one of his heroes and doesn't really show himself.

Genre: Rock
Year: 2012

1) Purple Haze
2) Manic Depression
3) Foxy Lady
4) The Wind Cries Mary
5) I Don't Live Today
6) My Angel
7) Angel
8) Fire
9) Red House
10) Stone Free
11) Hey Joe
12) Voodoo Chile (Slight Return)

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