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In Memory of Michael Bloomfield

4.6 out of 5 stars 9 customer reviews

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Audio CD, October 15, 2002
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Editorial Reviews


Track Listings

Disc: 1

  1. Interview
  2. Killing My Love
  3. 59th Street Bridge Song
  4. Stop
  5. Next Time You See Me
  6. Interview
  7. I Got a Mind to Give Up Living
  8. Interview
  9. Groovin' Is Easy
  10. Peter's Trip
  11. The Ones I Loved Are Gone
  12. It's About Time
  13. Jimi the Fox
  14. Mary Ann
  15. Interview
  16. Blues With a Feeling
  17. Interview
  18. Blues for MB

Product Details

  • Audio CD (October 15, 2002)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Alliance
  • ASIN: B00006LA1W
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #249,666 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

There are some musicians that are unique. Why do other singers try to cover Aretha Franklin's hits? They just end up sounding stiff. Why try to imitate the tone of Sonny Rollins, the bare bones melodicism of Miles Davis? You will just sound thin in comparison.
Michael Bloomfield's guitar solos had a passion as unique as Aretha's. His tone was as fat and as pure as Rollins' or Davis' tone. He was able to play all the variations of the blues like no one I have ever heard. He did not necessarily play fast but you felt like he was playing with everything he had. When he was on his game he was able to encompass everything I felt in that tone of his and play my blues away. Many guitar players take up residence in the upper register of their guitars and never leave. Michael played the whole range of possibility. Listen sometime to the way he enters on "I've got a mind to give up living" from East-West. Some of his playing, like on East-West or The Live Adventures of Bloomfield and Kooper set standards by which I judge other players.
Why try to cover someone like that? In the case of Robben and Patrick Ford, the reason seems to be the desire for more people to discover, hear and appreciate Bloomfield's music. Like myself, they first heard Bloomfield as teenagers when his albums were coming out. Robben has never lost his admiration for Bloomfield's playing.
The other reviews tell you what you need to know about who is playing on this CD and what stands out. About that I will only say two things: it is sweet to hear such a FAT horn section again (does no one make soul-blues albums anymore with great horn sections?) and the guitar playing by all is fabulous.
My one note of caution- these guys do not capture Bloomfield.
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By A Customer on October 22, 2002
Michael Bloomfield's ignominious passing in 1981 was almost a forgone conclusion. His continuing struggles with drugs and eventual demise, however, did not reflect how bright his light could shine in the late sixties and early seventies. As Patrick Ford says in the liner notes of this great CD, "When Bloomfield was on, there was no one better." The Ford Blues Band, with guests Robben Ford and Chris Cain are more eminently qualified to cover these tunes than anyone to present this tribute. In tandem with last year's "Tribute to Paul Butterfield", the Ford Blues Band has cemented their already venerable reputation as the torch carriers of Butter's and Bloomers' legacies.

The twelve cover tunes and one original tribute song are sprinkled with four snippets from an interview Dan McCloskey conducted with Bloomfield. Some of this interview can also be heard on Columbia's vinyl release, "Bloomfield: A Retrospective", long out of print. In the same way this CD has Bloomfield telling his early recollections of hearing the blues in Chicago, playing with Paul Butterfield, the early days of the Electric Flag and the universal appeal of the blues.

The performances are stellar. On one hand, there is painstaking attention directed to recreate songs like "Killing My Love", "Groovin' Is Easy", "Stop" and on the other, the players allow themselves to stretch out on "Feelin' Groovy" (with a brief nod to East-West at the coda) and "Mary Ann".
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I'm beginning to think the Ford Blues Band are in the tribute business. Two tribute albums in a row, and they're both hands down winners! First it was last years tribute to Paul Butterfield. And now his bandmate Michael Bloomfield. Both of these excellent artists were Robben Ford and his brothers biggest musical influences growing up in the 60's. For this tribute the Fords brought on board the very talented Chris Cain to join the band on guitar and vocal chores. Cain also cites Bloomfield as a big influence on his playing. They pour their hearts and souls into this project. Bloomfield was one of those players that was better suited as part of an ensemble. His solo albums, in my opinion left a lot to be desired. But put him in a live setting or in a band like Butterfield Blues or the Electric Flag, and you'll find one of the most brilliant and imaginative guitar players there ever was. Luckily, the music from this tribute is taken mostly from his band projects. One of the best tracks here is a remake of Paul Simon's "59th St. Bridge Song" (Feelin' Groovy) from the Live Adventures Of Bloomfield and Kooper. They did a killer version of this back then, and the Fords, notably Robben goes even farther and lays down some of the tastiest guitar playing of his long career. A great mix of retro 60's pop music mixed with cutting edge blues guitar, and it all works beautifully. Another great track is the Electric Flag's "Groovin' Is Easy". This is easily one of my favorite "feel good" rock songs of the 60's. It has an excellent big band sound, and the Fords lay down some of the tastiest horn lines you'll ever hear. They really do this one justice. The horns are great throughout, but the real star here is obviously the guitar.Read more ›
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Tremendous CD.Bloomfield is among the best players ever but never received the recognition that was his due.His best works-like Super Session- are blues icons.Guitar players already know that he was smoking.The Ford Band gives a fine tribute. Chris Cain-tremendous in his own right-shines here, doing dead on Bloomfield.Robben Ford-mega cool player- stays Robben, but gives his best blues playing that I know of-and I have eveything he put out.The house band and guitarist just smoke.This disc pays major respect to Mike and through hearing these contemporary awesome players maybe some people who are heretofore unfamiliar with Mike will pick up on him.Mike stands right there with the "giants of the white respectful musicologists of black hot electric blues guitarists from another generation school of guitar"-he's right up there with early Clapton, Green,etc. Get this CD to both immerse yourself in Michael and also to hear the best of the new breed at play-then go get some original Michael -like the live Al Kooper set -and really dig in.
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