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Tad Robinson - A New Point of View

Severn Records
Run Time: 46:40

Tad Robinson is a throw back, a hearkening to years gone by to an era when soul and R&B and soul blues weren’t muddied with sampled beats and the hard pounding bass or the overtly sexual and derogatory lyrics that sometimes bombard us when we throw on a contemporary R&B station these days. Robinson takes us back to when the church and the secular were a very fine line. He takes us back to the days when R&B still had rhythm and the blues in it. With some of the finest pipes in the business and purest timbre, you’ll not get a finer soul-blues release from 2007 than A New Point of View, which is twice nominated for a BMA this year in the soul blues categories.

With two covers and nine originals, Robinson demonstrates prowess as not just a vocalist but as a relevant song writer and harmonica player as well. Robinson’s band is not a bunch of slouches either. He has the great bandleader Willie Henderson (Tyrone Davis, Chi-Lites) arranging his horn section that sounds like its straight out of Memphis’ Hi Records years, just see track seven “Two of A Kind Blues” and you’ll know what I’m talking about. Anchored by some of the most soulful and funky guitar playing I’ve heard in awhile in the form of long time partner Alex Schultz and rounded out by the solid rhythm section of Scott Gomes (bass) and Robb Stupka (drums) and Victor Williams (percussion). This album smokes from beginning to end.

“Long Way Home” the album’s opening cut helps us reminisce to the soul of 70s Gamble & Huff Philadelphia; drenched in horn punctuation, funky fuzzy guitar, and string laced choruses. Then, Robinson turns around and slams us with the ample Johnnie Taylor cover “Ain’t That Lovin’ You (For More Reasons Than One).”  Robinson displays his wide range of influence by delivering the 70s Atlantic signature Tyrone Davis riff on “You Get to Keep the Love,” and delivers it with no less authority than the originator’s influence. On, “More Good Than Bad” Robinson walks the fine line of church and secular backed by the gospel-grooved organ of Kevin Anker.  The knock out punch is delivered on the Chicago traditional slow blues burner in “Broken Hearted Man.” The song demonstrates the tight arrangement of the band at the bridge, as it switches to a call and response that conjures Muddy Waters’ “Rolling Stone” and then driving back into the groove. Schultz shows some jazzy slick guitar riffs as well. The horns become a little invasive in the song, but nothing to fret over. Robinson has already nailed the door to the coffin but provides a solid burying blow with the “When You’re Ready,” which probably could’ve been an Al Green B-side in the Hi Records days. He takes you home with the final track full of funk that can barely keep you in your seat called “Back For More,” which leaves you wanting more. I’ve not been able to take my ears away from such a wonderful soul-blues CD. This guy surely knows the music just as good as anyone. He’s studied and polished as they come and lets everyone know that though Johnnie Taylor and Tyrone Davis have gone on, their legacies are in good hands as long as Tad Robinson is around.

Keep up with Tad Robinson on MySpace and at his website This album is available at all major record outlets

Ben Cox is a Blues Songwriter, Musician, DJ and Journalist.

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