Wednesday, March 1, 2000

New traditionalist

Posted By on Wed, Mar 1, 2000 at 12:00 AM

If you’re a fan of the Chicago blues sound, particularly the sound of Muddy Waters, then you’re likely to enjoy this album quite a bit. "Steady Rollin’" Bob Margolin, known and respected for his years of sideman work accompanying the late Muddy Waters, has both paid his dues and earned all the credentials necessary to be taken seriously by blues purists and others who consider it their duty to be keepers of the flame of tradition. Anyone who shared the stage with Muddy as a band member has definitely earned the right to be called "Authentic Blues Man" – for those who require such authentication before they can open their ears.

Fortunately, Margolin
doesn’t lock himself into the box of Days Gone By, at least not completely. Although Muddy’s influence on both his guitar playing and singing style can be heard coming through strong as a bull in a china closet, the song "Ice and Fire," though tied closely to traditional blues, still has more of a contemporary feel than some of the other tunes which come straight out of Muddy’s bag of blues. "Hard Feelings" and "Not Dark Yet" are two others that exhibit the ground that Margolin has covered since his days with Muddy. In all, Margolin both upholds and expands tradition admirably here.

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