Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Jason Elmore & Hoodoo Witch -- "Tell You What"

"Tell You What" is the second release by Jason Elmore & Hoodoo Witch--it follows and builds on their debut, 2010's "Upside Your Head." The band came together in 2008 in Dallas, Texas, and they have been building a following every since. I really liked "Upside Your Head"--I thought Elmore had the potential to become a big-time guitar player, and I liked his singing voice. This time out, both Elmore's guitar playing and singing are out of sight--and "Tell You What" is a huge leap forward.

The band is still a trio--Elmore on guitar and vocals, Chris Waw on bass, with Mike Talbot now on drums, replacing Beau Chadwell, who played drums on the first cd. Guests this time out include Tommy Young on Hammond B-3 and Ron Jones on horns. Jim Suhler is on slide guitar on Rory Gallagher's "Country Mile," and Kirby Kelley is on lap steel on William Bell's "You Don't Miss Your Water." Elmore wrote eight of the 12 tracks, and there are four covers: the two previous mentioned, along with Sean Costello's "Don't Pass Me By" and Buck Owens' "Buckaroo."

Everything gets underway with "Sharecropper Shuffle," a nice upbeat instrumental. "Southbound" is a heavyweight blues-rock number. "Cold Lonely Dawn" was the first song that caught my ear--an eight minute R&B ballad. It sounds great in a set of Texas blues by Anson Funderburgh and Jimmie Vaughan. "When The Sun Goes Down" is a great country-rock blues. "Bottom Feeder" is an ominous grinding number where Elmore can show off his singing, and "Dirt Ain't Enough" is a minor key slow blues with a nice touch of Jimi Hendrix in the guitar work. "Buckaroo" is another of my favorites--here the band shares the love for Buck Owens & The Buckaroos, one of the great country bands of all time. "Country Mile" is a rip-roaring triumph. Top track on the cd. Elmore and Suhler   
push each other and literally burn the house down. "Don't Pass Me By" is a fine effort, with good guitar work and good singing. "Good Foot" is a slower jazzy song, giving Elmore a chance to show his versatility on guitar. "She Fine" is a Texas swing number, well done. Elmore and company close the set with the Otis Redding, William Bell penned classic "You Don't Miss Your Water." Kirby Kelley's lap steel here is terrific.  

Everything here is smooth, swinging and energetic. The playing and singing are all first-rate. This is a great cd, and I see a great future ahead for these guys. This cd is dedicated in memory of Bugs Henderson.

You can buy this cd at most major retailers. Go to to read more about the band, see their concert calendar, or to view videos recorded live from the road.