Review: John Ginty – Bad News Travels

Posted on: Tuesday, Nov 5, 2013


John Ginty – Bad News Travels

(American Showplace Music: ASM3008)

Here’s quite a rarity these days, a Hammond B-3 led release, featuring New Jersey native John Ginty, who has toured and recorded with a host of people including The Dixie Chicks, Santana, Bad Religion, Matthew Sweet and was an original member of Robert Randolph and the Family Band. He also regularly sits in with The Allman Brothers Band.

On “Bad News Travels” he plays Hammond B-3, Vintage Vibe electric piano and acoustic piano; with Dan Fadel (drums), Paul Kuzik (bass), Mike Buckman (bass and guitar), Chuck Wood (percussion) and Cris Jacobs (acoustic guitar and backing vocal). He is also able to call on some very fine guests including Albert Castiglia, Todd Wolfe, Warren Haynes and Neil Casal on guitar duties.

He has penned all ten numbers here himself, with the album produced by Ben Elliott, who has worked with Keith Richards and Eric Clapton. It’s a mix of soulful blues, some funk and rockier songs, dominated by his very fine keyboard work. Several tracks are instrumental, including the opening “The Quirk”, with some dynamite guitar from Albert Castiglia, who lays down some powerful solos. He also features on the next track up, “Black Cat”, a more laid-back soulful affair . . . almost in vintage Santana territory, and very nice indeed.

Todd Wolfe lays down some fiery blues licks on “Peanut Butter”, jousting with Ginty’s keyboards – the guitar work having shades of the late, great Albert King. The gorgeous “Mirrors” sees Gov’t Mule and The Allman Brothers Band man Warren Haynes lay down some superb guitar as Ginty features both on organ and piano – it’s a stand-out for me. Castiglia again is present on both vocals and guitar on the funky “Damage Control” and also “Elvis Presley”, a doff of the cap to the ‘Elvis is alive’ theory, and a most amusing one, with more stinging guitar.

The rousing and soulful “Trinity”, with Cris Jacobs on guitar rounds off this most enjoyable  release . . . it’s a sort of Memphis meets The Blues Brothers breakneck instrumental to start with, then goes into a mellow middle section, with Jacobs and Ginty both taking solos . . . before the pace is taken up again.

This may be hard to get hold of, but is highly recommended for all Hammond lovers out there!


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