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Don't Explain

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Audio CD, September 27, 2011
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (September 27, 2011)
  • Original Release Date: 2011
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: J&R Adventures
  • ASIN: B005FLX2WC
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (264 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,108 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Sinner's Prayer
2. Chocolate Jesus
3. Your Heart Is As Black As Night
4. For My Friends
5. Don't Explain
6. I'd Rather Go Blind
7. Something's Got A Hold On Me
8. I'll Take Care Of You
9. Well, Well
10. Ain't No Way

Editorial Reviews

2011 collaboration between Los Angeles based singer/songwriter Beth Hart and Blues guitarist Joe Bonamassa. Produced by Kevin Shirley (Joe Bonamassa, Led Zeppelin, Black Crowes), the album features Hart's interpretations of 10 soulful Blues songs, with Bonamassa on guitar and his ace band filling out the tracks. Beth collaborated with Bonamassa and Shirley on choosing songs, and the final set list features numbers made famous by artists including Billie Holiday, Aretha Franklin, Bill Withers, Ray Charles, Delaney & Bonnie, Tom Waits, Etta James and others.

Customer Reviews

All I can simply say is - I just love this CD!
J. France
Coupled with some very tasteful guitar work by Joe Bonamassa and a great selections of songs by other great artists, this CD really stands out.
Joe's guitar work and Beth's voice are INCREDIBLE!
Amazon Customer

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

181 of 186 people found the following review helpful By poppyrock13 on September 30, 2011
Format: Audio CD
I never (and I mean never), take the time to write a review for any Cd's I buy, and I have bought a bunch (over 700, had over 500 records at one time, and a couple hundred cassettes). I couldn't play a musical instrument to save my life, but I have listened to a lot of music in my 50 years on this planet. With all that said, I understand that my opinion probably doesn't mean all that much. But I did want to say that I love this recording. Been listening to it non-stop for five days now. If you like blues rock and/or soul R & B, you will probably like this. Hate to use the word wonderful...but that is what this release is. Wonderful, full of life, and just plain good, from start to finish. I just hope Joe B. and Beth get together again. Because her vocals, and his guitar work are a real "match made in heaven," as they say, and us poor working folks haven't got a whole lot to look forward to these days. I bought this Cd on Monday, and today is Friday...it has been a good week. Might give yourself a lift, and check this one out.
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79 of 85 people found the following review helpful By John Stracey on September 26, 2011
Format: Vinyl
Beth Hart is one of the most powerful female blues/rock singers to emerge since Janis Joplin and she recently recorded a new album in collaboration with guitar maestro Joe Bonamassa entitled 'Don't Explain'. After crossing paths out on tour and previously working together making 'No Love On The Street' for Bonamassa's recent `Dust Bowl' album, it soon became apparent to Bonamassa that his guitar would provide the perfect foil for Hart's vocals. Almost inevitably Don't Explain was recorded earlier this year at Village Recorders, West Los Angeles in California, drafting in Kevin "Caveman" Shirley to produce & mix an album full of soul covers interpreted as only Hart & Bonamassa could, giving new blood to classic songs!

'Don't Explain' showcases Beth Hart baring her heart and soul on vocals & Joe Bonamassa playing guitar as only he can, delivering classic songs from a golden bygone era that belonged to divas like Billie Holiday, Aretha Franklin and Etta James coupled with more contemporary numbers worthy of inclusion. Backing band is the same Bonamassa successfully assembled for his album 'The Ballad of John Henry' featuring Anton Fig (drums & percussion), Blondie Chaplin (guitar) & Carmine Rojas (bass) with Arlan Scheirbaum joining them on keyboards.

'Don't Explain' immediately has Hart pleading for mercy, probably just as Ray Charles would have imagined when he first wrote 'Sinner's Prayer', and the thought invoking Tom Waits song 'Chocolate Jesus' is so sassy, it would not sound out of place sung in a Parisian nightclub! Next cue piano for a flawless rendition of Melody Gardot's sultry jazz ballad 'Your Heart Is As Black As Night' and add slow blues guitar to make it complete.
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35 of 37 people found the following review helpful By S.Lancial on September 27, 2011
Format: Audio CD
I've been a Bonamassa fan since the Bloodline days and never heard of Beth Hart so I took a chance it would be pretty good and it is AMAZING. The band plays great and plays what the music calls for,sort of has a old school vibe with a new school sound to me and Beth's vocals are perfect for it,I just hope this isn't the only disc they release together.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I am an electric blues fanatic and as such... fell in love with Joe's "Blues Deluxe" which gave me great hope for a new source of hard to find string bending electric blues in the image of Stevie Ray Vaughan, Albert King, Buddy Guy, Otis Rush, etc. I became very disappointed as the CD's that followed were nowhere near that caliber or neighborhood of blues. I even skipped buying Joe's last few CD's completely. But... for some reason I finally gave in and bought "Don't Explain" even though from what I read... and what I heard in mini-second sound bites... I knew it wasn't in the "Blues Deluxe" category...

Man! Am I glad I bought it! This CD can without a doubt be called beautiful music. Beth Hart has a voice that blasts out from the deepest bowels of her soul and grabs the listener by their heart. Joe supports this titanic talent with all due respect that a voice like this deserves. Out of ten songs nine are winners. (I'm sorry... but "Chocolate Jesus" should have... to put it plainly and directly... been left off this CD. In the liner notes Beth says: ""My take on it is less of the chicken coop blues that he did, (Tom Waits) and more of a sassy, French café style." I don't know about you, but the one thing I wasn't looking for on a Joe Bonamassa CD was "FRENCH CAFÉ STYLE MUSIC"!)

There are many great songs and performances on this CD... but none better than the absolute **CLASSIC** performance on "I'D RATHER GO BLIND"! This is an eight-minute-five-second tour de force. Beth's voice, heart, and soul is poured out with such powerful elegance... that you can't help playing it over and over. The combination of Beth and Joe on this awe inspiring song made me dream of them doing the National Anthem together on some titanic event such as the Super Bowl or World Series.
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17 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Jeanie on September 27, 2011
Format: Audio CD
Blues rockers Beth Hart and Joe Bonamassa collaborate on this offering of soul covers and the result is pure magic. Considering the quality of the originals this was a gutsy project. It's a delightful mix of soul, blues, rock, jazz and gospel. Beth burns with passion and sings her heart out and Bonamassa's playing is impeccable.

From the opening track of the bluesy Sinner's Prayer with the great guitar riff and Beth's out of this world vocals you know you're in for a treat. Some of the songs are sultry ballads with string arrangements and beautifully haunting guitar. The tongue-in-cheek Chocolate Jesus is pure fun. For My Friends is a powerful blues rocker. I'd Rather Go Blind is amazing - emotive vocals and guitar build to a crescendo. Something's Got A Hold On Me is upbeat times a hundred - some real gospel/soul - and if it doesn't make you want to dance, you must be dead. I'll Take Care of You is a beautiful ballad with a brilliant guitar solo at the end that catapults the energy level. Well Well is incredibly catchy and the only duet on the album.

It's hard to pick highlights because the entire album is a highlight. Beth's vocals are outstanding, sassy, fun, versatile and always right for the song - whether she brings out all the power and rasp of her voice or sings as smooth as silk. Joe's playing is stunning, flawless, pitch perfect and nuanced. The vocals and musicianship are really unparalleled. This is a masterpiece and I can only pray there will be more to come from this partnership.

The covers are as follows: Sinner's Prayer (Ray Charles w/BB King), Chocolate Jesus (Tom Waits), Your Heart is as Black as Night (Melody Gardot), For My Friends (Bill Withers), Don't Explain (Billie Holiday), I'd Rather Go Blind (Etta James), Something's Got a Hold on Me (Etta James), I'll Take Care of You (Brook Benton), Well Well (Delaney and Bonnie), Ain't No Way (Aretha Franklin).
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