Reviewed by Harry Kaplan
It is rare that I focus on a band name. But this is an exceptional case. That name is totally bad ass. Three women who don’t belong to anyone. They are their own people and damn sure have their own way of doing things. This is certainly one of the most creative and thought provoking names to come across this guy’s desk.  (more…)
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Reviewed by Harry Kaplan
Finally, an album that is the proper length. Strange Conversation clocks in at 38 minutes, the sweet spot. This is the blues having a three-way with jazz and country. All three partners are equal participants that work towards the greater good of the group. No, this isn’t Animal Farm. This is about the interrelationship of three pieces working perfectly in concert. Mandy is also full of surprises. Just when I think the album is going in one direction, it takes a sharp turn and changes course. Let’s add a little bit of Motown to the mix.

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Reviewed by Harry Kaplan
Was it a concert? Yes and no. There was live music being played, but it was so much more than just a garden variety concert. It wasn’t a lecture, but it sure had some elements of a lecture. In fact, Thomas said that being at Center Stage was the next best thing to being in one of his classes that he teaches at Johns Hopkins University. Professor Dolby pulled the curtain back so we could all witness the genius and the creative process of a legend and pioneer in rock music. When I am at a loss for words, I default to the simplest form of writing. It was a wonderful evening, let’s leave it at that.  (more…)

Reviewed by Harry Kaplan
Wild! Wild! Wild! is such a brilliant breath of clean air. This is triple distilled, 100 % pure country music. Is it 1978 or 2018? Not sure just by listening to this album, but when my smartphone started beeping, I knew I was back in 2018. This is one of the few albums where it is difficult to write and listen. The conundrum is that the music is so appealing, I only want to immerse myself. That is a good predicament to be in.  (more…)

Reviewed by Harry Kaplan
This is the follow up to 2016’s These American Blues. That is not an easy proposition. To top that or even tie it, would take something special. Well Levi rose to the occasion, as he always does. This album is definitely more rock oriented, where These American Blues was a little more soul and folk based. It is a perfect transition into a new journey. I thought These American Blues was as good as it gets. I was mistaken. I’ts All Good is as good as it gets, so far. (more…)

Reviewed by Harry Kaplan
A refreshing change in the sound for Lucero. Don’t get me wrong, I love all of their material over their long career. Having said that, I like variety. I also enjoy seeing the evolutionary process of the artist. As I have said before, it is not sustainable for an artist to keep making the same album over and over. There are a few exceptions to this rule (Son Volt and The Ramones come to mind), but even the artists don’t want to just stagnate and not strive for musical growth.  (more…)