Review: Bob Corritore – Taboo

Posted on: Sunday, Jun 22, 2014


Bob Corritore – Taboo

(Delta Groove Music: DGPCD163)

An all-instrumental blues harmonica release may be seen as a bold move by some, but the sheer quality of the tunes and playing on this latest release from Bob Corritore ensures that it is most enjoyable! The Chicago-raised, Arizona-based Corritore is a very busy man . . . as well as playing the blues, he runs the Rhythm Room venue in Phoenix, presents a weekly radio show and also is an acclaimed producer.

His stature has risen steadily with a string of fine releases, including the excellent “Knockin’ Around These Blues”, in the company of veteran Chicago guitarist John Primer; as well as also collaborating with Tail Dragger and featuring on some of The Mannish Boys output. Here he has assembled a top class group of musicians, including Jimmie Vaughan, Junior Watson, Fred Kaplan, Richard Innes . . . and many more!

Corritore has penned nine of the 12 tracks on “Taboo”, which run the full gamut of the blues, but in  no way does he totally hog the limelight, preferring to play in a powerful but tasteful manner on a variety of moods and grooves . . . and indeed harmonica master Charlie Musselwhite, in his sleeve notes, observes how Corritore keeps the CD interesting all the way through . . . as he says, no mean feat for an all-instrumental release.

Needless to say Corritore is a fine player, with a big tone and the highlights are plentiful . . . from the opening cover of “Potato Stomp” to the closing “Bob’s Late Hours”. The afore-mentioned opener has some quite blistering trademark Junior Watson guitar, and indeed, he plays on all tracks bar two; he hits a lowdown Texas groove on Ruckus Rhythm”, with rolling piano from West Coast legend Fred Kaplan and the ‘in the pocket’ rhythm section of Richard Innes and Kedar Roy.

The appealing rumba of the title cut “Taboo” is really nice, and it leads into the driving Chicago shuffle of “Harp Blast”, where Corritore and band ‘doff the cap’ to the genius of the great Little Walter; a nice touch is the track for Kid Ramos, the Latin-flavoured “Fabuloco (For Kid)”, who is now thankfully doing well after serious health issues.

“Shuff Shuff” is another standout, with some great harmonica and Jimmie Vaughan laying down some ace rhythm guitar work and neat solo; and corking saxophone solo from Doug James – the track also featuring Hammond B-3 of the highest quality from Papa John DeFrancesco.

Well worth checking out – particularly for all blues harmonica fans out there!


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