This is how it is. Ike Turner sings like a good-time Captain Beefheart, and his guitar playing stings like inhaling lemonade. He's also one of the legends of popular music, whose course might have been different if it hadn't been for him. On this disc he plays like a man half his age and with a lust for life akin to a man fifty years younger.
Sure, the contemporary touches get in the way, and whilst the music is some way from down home, it has a lot of the qualities that made that music so great. Besides, Ike Turner knows that because he was there, and nothing can take that away from him.
In fact, on the likes of his own "Tease Me," the issue's irrelevant. Turner's a hungry man, figuratively speaking. He doesn't have any qualms about laying that feeling on the listener, and when he and his band nail Fats Domino's inimitable lilt on "Goin' Home Tomorrow," the fact that he doesn't quite hit the vocal has the odd effect of making the performance even more appealing. It's nice to know he's subject to the same human failings as the rest of us.
Lack of range isn't one of these, and Turner and the band do a cover of Horace Silver's "Senor Blues" that'll have the purists feeling queasy. For the rest of us, it's testament to how broad that river of music can be.
What it comes down to is that this is the sound of a man revelling in the years and having himself a high old time. Any qualms we might have just don't seem to matter, and only the very meanest hearts would want to deny him that right.
Gimme Back My Wig; Caldonia; Tease Me; Goin
Ike Turner: lead vocals, guitar, piano. The Kings Of Rhythm: Mack Johnson, Leo Dumbecki,
Ryan Montana: horns; Seth Blumberg, Joe Kelly: guitars; Ken Frizelle: harp; Paul Smith, Ernest
Lane: keyboards; Kevin Cooper: bass; Bill Ray, Matt Long, Harry Jen Frizelle: drums. Audrey
Madison: backing Vocals (7); Lenny
All About Jazz & Jazz Near You were built to promote jazz music: both recorded and live events. We rely primarily on venues, festivals and musicians to promote their events through our platform. With club closures, shelter in place and an uncertain future, we've pivoted our platform to collect, promote and broadcast livestream concerts to support our jazz musician friends. This is a significant but neccesary effort that will help musicians now, and in the future. You can help offset the cost of this essential undertaking by making a donation today. In return, we'll deliver an ad-free experience (which includes hiding the bottom right video ad). Thank you.
Get more of a good thing
Our weekly newsletter highlights our top stories and includes your local jazz events calendar.