Review: Texas Slim – That’s Who I Am

Posted on: Wednesday, Apr 23, 2014

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Texas Slim –  That’s Who I am

(Feelin’ Good Records: 024)

Texas Slim is his name and yes, he is a long, lean gunslinger from Texas (born in Dallas, in 1963, his family and friends know him as Robert Sullivan) and has been playing the blues for well over twenty years now and from the highly enlightening sleeve notes of Norman Darwen; we are reliably informed that he is also a well recognised artist playing regularly across Europe and his home country America, he continues to sharpen and hone his musical edges wherever he plays, especially so, in the clubs and pubs in and around the areas of his home town Dallas and Fort Worth.

This is his third album for the Feelin’ Good label and the 16 numbers here retain all the verve, vigour and raw enthusiasm found on his earlier recordings. Long time musical associates helping TS; guitar and vocals, to create this alluring and inviting music are; Bill Cornish; bass, Kenny Stern; drums and Brian ‘Hash Brown’ Calway; harmonica.

TS and the band successfully capture the same happy go lucky, live rocking spontaneous grooving atmosphere that Hound Dog Taylor famously displayed way back in the seventies, in fact due to the high level of energy infused into the performances only eight of them contain any overdubs. Virtually all the numbers are no holds barred solid blues rockers and moaners, with only just enough time between them for you to get your breath back.

Considering the singular fact that Dallas is very much inland some of the numbers such as; the Lonnie Mack and Albert King inspired “Attack of The Mosquitoes” and the Freddie King inspired “Rock Hauler”, contain some wonderful examples of tumbling surfing riffs that effortlessly segue into manically hypnotic sixties drumming while over the top the racing and screaming guitar of TS bestrides the crests of those waves.

The restless and breathless heads down Lightin’ Hopkins inspired “Lightnin’ Boogie” is driven by fasted paced foot-tappin’ drumming with a searing wasp stinging, raw boogie guitar riding scattergun! The pace is somewhat more relaxed and lyrical with the sweetly soaring and satisfying “Trouble Knockin’”, a slowburning shuffling slide driven carpet slider. The pace is yet again picked up with the splendid Frank Frost composition “Jelly Roll King “, a joyously swinging harmonica led shuffler that TS supplies some tasty twanging to.

The slowburning “Too Wild To Tame”, allows TS to bend those strings to heartbreaking effect while a melancholy and lonely drum and bass traipse along in the background.

This is indeed a bumper collection of varied and sparkling blues numbers that will entrance and entertain all that hear it.

Highly Recommended!

BRIAN HARMAN

www.feelingoodproductions.com

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