Peter “Blewzzman” Lauro Review

April, 2013

Reprinted with Permission from www.Mary4Music.com

By Peter “Blewzzman” Lauro,  Blues Editor

Although Deb Landolt did have a prior release as Long Tall Deb And The  Drifter Kings, “Raise Your Hands” is officially her first “solo” release.  Now by no means does that mean she’s alone. As a matter of fact, while  assembling the band for this project, the long, tall and talented Deb went with  a “more the merrier attitude”. She pretty much assembled the number of – as well  as quality of – musicians you’d commonly see at a two day blues festival.

Joining Deb Landbolt on lead & background vocals are: John Popovich on  Fender Rhodes, organ & piano; Sean Carney, Dave Clo, Damon Fowler, Colin  John, Matt O’ree, Brent Pennell, JP Soars, Jimmy Thackery and Bart Walker on  guitar; Melvin Powe and Chuck Riley on bass; Jan Roll and Chris Peet on drums;  Shaun Booker and Philip Pemberton on lead vocals; Big Llou on step out vocals;  Nikki Scott on lead & background vocals; Michelle Swift on background  vocals; Victor Wainwright and Reese Wynans on organ; Lynn Williams on  percussion; Mark Earley on baritone & tenor sax; Rich Lataille on alto &  tenor sax; Doug Wolverton on trumpet – all of whom are collectively known as the  Roomful Of Blues Horns; and a half dozen or so of the aforementioned musicians  collectively referred to as the Handclapper’s Union on…..yep, you guessed it – hand claps.

“Raise Your Hands” features two covers and ten original tracks  co-written by Deb and several members of a collaboration group affectionately  referred to as the “Wednesday Night Music Club”.

The word “train” in the title usually indicates you should expect to hear  some smokin’ rhythm and “Train To Tucson” has just that. The discs best  drum work from Jan Roll has this train rollin’ at just the right speed.  Additional fuel aptly provided by not one, not two, but three guitarists – Sean,  Dave & Colin.

“Coa Breeze” should be mandatory listening for all aspiring female  vocalists. With the band in a very relaxed mode, Deb puts on a singing class for  anyone interested in learning the perfect usage of vocal range.

After continually hounding her about finding a man and settling down, I’m not  quite sure how happy Deb’s mother was when she told her that she’d set a date to  get “Married To The Blues”. As Deb sees it, The Blues are an ideal mate.  The Blues don’t care if she stay’s out all night or if she’s wrong or right. The  Blues don’t care when her money’s all run out or if she’s down and out. The  Blues don’t care if she sees other men or even where she’s been. Deb’s vocals –  lead and background – are just one of many of this tracks’ highlights. Others  include: Big Llou, as the preacher, performing the marriage; and three  guitarists – Matt, Jimmy & Bart – doing blistering solos.

Those powerfully, yet sultrily sung ballads – with a strong horn section  that’s intense when it needs to be, yet subtle enough to blend in with the  soothing sounds of the organ – always, always win me over. “Finally Forgot  Your Name” is one of those songs. Melvin, Jan and John are magnificent on  rhythm; the Roomful Of Blues Horns are being the Roomful Of Blues Horns… no  further explanation necessary; and Deb, along with some background help from  herself and Michelle, is pure perfection on lead vocals. The number eight suits  this song well. It’s the eight track you just might replay about eight times…I  did.

Even though it’s one of the covers, I couldn’t wait to hear “Muddy  Jesus”. It features Deb, on lead vocals, teaming up with all of my good  friends from Southern Hospitality: Damon & JP on guitar, Chris on drums,  Chuck on bass and Victor on organ. As expected, it delivered. Damon & JP are  as good a tandem guitar duo as these ears have ever heard. Add their monster  rhythm section and Deb belting out some Gospel style blues and you’ve got one of  the discs best tracks.

The disc closes with one of it’s most beautifully done songs, “New Coat Of  Paint”. It’s a short two and a quarter minute ballad that I was wishing was  about triple the time in length. On it, Deb and John are absolutely masterful  together on vocals and piano.

Other tracks on “Raise Your Hands” include: “What Would A Good  Woman Do”, “Hush Your Mouth”, “Let’s Get Lost”, “The Last Time”, “Raise Your  Hands” and “To Find His Home”.

To find out more about Long Tall Deb Landolt just go to her website… www.LongTallDeb.com. While you’re  there, please take a minute to tell her that the Blewzzman sent you and that  he’s very excited about seeing her at the Rum Boogie Cafe, in Memphis, next  week.

Peter “Blewzzman” Lauro Blues Editor @ www.Mary4Music.com 2011  Keeping The Blues Alive Award Recipient