John’s Blues Picks Nov 2015 – Harmonica Shah
Harmonica Shah If You Live To Get Old, You Will Understand (Electro-Fi/Outside) | Harmonica Shah on Facebook
Harmonica Shah’s latest report from the relationship wars lands on November 17 and again features the stellar backup cast of Jack de Keyzer, Julian Fauth, Alec Fraser & Bucky Berger. Seward ‘Harmonica’ Shah is from Detroit and perhaps it’s his background there that led him to come up with such unconventional songs. They don’t follow bar lines at all, being mostly made up on the spot but they do fit perfectly into the golden age of Chicago blues. It takes band members of this calibre and experience to make it all work and after five discs, this combination runs like a well-oiled machine.
On the first song, “Baby, You Have Got To Change”, Shah is having difficulty relating to his woman now that she has her own job at GM. “I Just Don’t Want You No More” doesn’t need much explanation lyrically but the solos are just superb: Shah’s amplified harp first, then two choruses of Jack on slide and finally Julian on piano. “(What’s done) Deep Down in The Dark (Will Come to the Light)” has just Julian on a superb piano accompaniment. Only Shah could come up with “Congratulations, That New Love You’ve Got Is My Wife”. It’s a stomping band track. The title track is the closer and it’s a slow blues thanking his younger wife for looking after him (and having his three kids).
Shah’s talent for improvising such excellent blues is perfectly matched by this all-star band, it doesn’t get much better than this.