portrait of this blog's author - by Stephen Blackman 2008

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

This from the truly Wonderful Willard's Wormholes this morning ,a dn he is right the inheritance of people covering Bobby starts with Jimi but progresses here to Mr Johnson. Wow! I love it when you discover another rarely gifted guitarist! Check this!

JEF LEE JOHNSON The Zimmerman Shadow (2009)

The Zimmerman Shadow 
The Blues Via Dylan

I was pre-disposed to like this album, being a big fan of guitarist Jef Lee Johnson’s debut album, Blue(HERE). His resume as a session guitarist is rich (Ronald Shannon Jackson, among others), but his releases sometimes sound more like a young popsterwith a blues edge than a veteran black experimenter with a gifted avant-guitar touch. The Zimmerman Shadow, an off-beat 2009 Bob Dylan covers album, is another outside-the-box release for Johnson. It sounds live in the studio, and runs the gamut from free improv to slightly jazzy renditions to near-pop expression – all cloaked in the guise of an after-hours studio jam band. Somehow, all of this sounds OK when applied to Dylan’s material. Not unlike Hendrix’s re-interpretations of Dylan’s work, Johnson takes the melodies and filters it all though his own blues sensibilities – in the end, offering a complete reinvention based on Dylan’s source code. The 8 minute, “Highway 61” has slight echoes of Hendrix, mostly in JefLee’s vocal phrasing, while “As I Went Out One Morning” uses the John Wesley Harding tune’s melody to anchor a moody, quiet and expansive 11 minute exploration that lapses into an improv/feedback jam. Dylan fans may or may not be amused. Johnson fans will savor this as another example of his back-handed approach to career decision-making.

I Am A Lonesome Hobo (5:33)
Highway 61 Revisited (8:18)
As I Went Out One Morning (11:35)
Knockin‘ On Heaven’s Door (1:35)
Idiot Wind (7:57)
Ballad Of A Thin Man (4:45)
Blind Willie McTell (5:11)
One More Cup Of Coffee (4:09)
Knockin‘ On Heaven’s Door (2:47)
From A Buick 66 (6:39)
Not Out Of The Book (0:21)
Knockin‘ On Heaven’s Door (3:44)

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