Jason Vivone/The Billy Bats / Bio
"The Kansas City Blues Society is probably very happy to have Jason Vivone and The Blues Bats representing them. After all, these guys do stick to the dusty blueprints set down decades ago by the musical forebears they love and admire. So they come out with their own independent release that sees them paying homage to the visionaries instrumental in their artistic vision of how the blues should be approached. Of course that’s a good thing but can be overlooked when there are blemishes in the mix."
"And it couldn’t get off to a better start with the John Lee Hooker tinged “I Hear A Heartbeat” that sees Vivone displaying some blistering slide chops on his cigar box guitar that screams Hill Country and that could make the North Mississippi All-Stars sit up and take notice. And while the second tune “Baby Fat” knocks the adrenaline level down a peg or two, the pilot lights get quickly lit up in the following track “The Nina, The Pinta, The Santa Maria” that waves the Elmore James flag loud and proud."
"Only nine tracks make up this CD and it clocks in a little more than half an hour. Still it is enough of a hypodermic shot of the blues and there are some musical passages that could be considered re-writes of blues gems from the past. “Black Lone Ranger” seems lifted from Muddy Waters’ “Hootchie Cootchie Man.” It is up to the number “One Hot Mother” to steer towards more original waters and Ben Hoppes banjo is a welcome addition in the ensemble as opposed to a guitar cranked to the max."
"The melancholy of “Photograph” is not too bad of tune. At least the band doesn’t stay in this groove for too long as they bust loose with “Do The Nod” that rests on a Bo Diddley bedrock of rhythm. It leads into “Liquid Diet” where band seems intent on taking on the role of blues."
"The plus side of this independent release is these guys try their best in creating roots music without any regards for mainstream success and more power to them. Some numbers like the opening tracks would no doubt go down for a Saturday night crowd looking for a good time."
"Jason Vivone makes sure to stay far away from the blues rock clichés. Maybe he will hit his stride as a songwriter and come up with material that will shine from beginning to end. He’s capable of doing it."
Gary Weeks Marietta GA
Nicotina says HI!
- Band Members:
- Vivone (guitar, cigarbox, harp) Ben Hoppes (banjo), Matt Bustamante (drums) Jeremy Clark (bass) Paula Crawford (percussion,g
- Artist Name:
- Jason Vivone/The Billy Bats
- Home Page:
- Active Since:
- Blues / Roots / Singer/Songwriter
- Kansas City, MO
- Elmore James The King of the Slide Guitar
- Little Feat
- Taj Mahal
- Buddy Guy
- Ry Cooder