Glenn Patrik - Nuthiní But a Thang
11 songs; 52:54 minutes; Meritable
Style: Modern Electric Blues
With a straight razor stuffed in his boot and a guitar slung across his back, this journeyman guitarist, Glenn Patrik, has journeyed his way across America and the globe from gigs to jams to an appearance at the W.C. Handy Awards (now known as Blues Music Awards). Along the way he has played with a pantheon of Blues greats from Mississippi to Bankok, from L.A. to N.Y.C. and all points in between.
In search of musicians of whom he had only heard, Patrik says, "Iíve spent the last forty somethiní years tryiní to show up early, look sharp, and deliver the guitar/vocal sound that the boss was lookiní for." Now, the singer, songwriter and guitarist is the boss, having just released his second independent CD on Shakehouse Records.
The Las Vegas resident has spent over four decades Bluesing since performing his very first show at age eight for a crowd of 3,000 people in his hometown of Kansas City, Kansas. Says his website, "Glenn Patrik brings a lifetime of struggle and soul, joy and pain and hard-driving blues playing to" ten originals of the eleven tracks on "Nuthin' But A Thang!"
There may not be any new ground broken here, but at least Glenn Patrik and his band know what the Blues are and donít take the all-too-frequent detour down a "Rock" road. His Blues pedigree becomes evident from the first enjoyable notes of track one, "Donít Call Me Daddy." The band swings up-tempo: bass and drums popping and the organ holds the bottom while Patrik expertly plays a few bars of Blue notes on guitar. Then the lyrics: "I canít finance your life, and you know I ainít lookiní for a wife ... Donít Call Me Daddy!" Yeah, baby; thatís the Blues.
Patrikís partners are Ron Anaman - bass/vocals, Rusty Hall - keyboards, Thomas "Freight Train" Walker - drums/vocals. Additional assistance is provided by Pat Rizzo - saxophone on one number, Wayne Smith - bass on four cuts, and Nancy Franklin and Joseph Planett add vocals.
Track two slows the tempo slightly and features both a piano solo and a bass solo mid song while Patrik croons to his lover reaffirming words of his affection in "Donítcha Know."
Being from Kansas City practically requires a cover of the classic song. Here, Patrik and crew lay down their own arrangement. It doesnít really improve on the original, but it seems to set up the listener for the blistering guitar opening of track 4ís deep Blues, "The Bossman."
After a couple of missteps in the middle of the CD, the set closes strong with the last two numbers. "Last Night" is a grooving, intricate instrumental with accompanying live party sounds (like quiet chatter and a cocktail shaker). Hallís organ gets deft workout leads while Patrik plays chords, then they switch mid-song.
For my money, "Other Side of Town" is the real winner of the set. Kicking off with some BB King sounding guitar, the mid-tempo song is replete with full band and background vocals. I will be playing this one on my radio show this week!
After 40 years on the Blues journey, Patrik has reached another milestone. His CD come across as joyful and fun loving, and if you are not having any fun on the highway, then you are missing the trip.
Reviewer James "Skyy Dobro" Walker is a noted Blues writer, DJ, Master of Ceremonies, and Blues Blast contributor. His weekly radio show "Friends of the Blues" can be heard Thursdays from 7 - 8 pm and Saturdays 8 pm - Midnight on WKCC 91.1 FM and at www.wkccradio.org in Kankakee, IL
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