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October 1999

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Buy Kid Ramos' CD today

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Kid Ramos
Kid Ramos

Kid RamosThe third, self-titled solo outing from Kid Ramos is a superb release from an often under-appreciated guitar player. The Fabulous Thunderbirds' guitarist is in magnificent form throughout this disc, serving up his usual razor sharp blazing licks and even handles vocals, quite adequately I might add, on the last track.

Unlike a lot of artists that produce themselves, "The Kid" has produced a band album and is more than willing to share the spotlight with a collection of other gifted artists. Backing him up are some of the best blues musicians in the business today. The four main vocalists --- Kim Wilson, Lynwood Slim, Janiva Magness and James Harman --- each add their own unique stylings to their featured tunes. Cesar Rosas of Los Lobos fame, turns in a startling cover of "300 Pounds Of Joy" that would have made Howlin' Wolf proud. Piano and keyboard duties are split among Gene Taylor, Rob Rio and Dave Mathews. Rounding out the rhythm section are Stephen Hodges and Richard Innes trading off tracks on the drums. Last, but not least, Willie J. Campbell plays bass on all selections.

The James Harman Band of the 80's (Harman, Ramos, Taylor, Campbell and Hodges) are reunited here for two Harman penned tunes, "Walk Around Telephone Blues" and the slow burnin' "Helsinki Laundromat Blues," which will make you yearn for an album from that incredible lineup.

The other standout tracks on this CD are "The Jig's Up," "Fiddle De Dee," and two instrumentals, the swinging "Cold Chicken And Beer" and, believe it or not, a tribute to American Bandstand's theme song entitled "Bandstand Boogie."

Touching on many different styles of blues, Chicago, Memphis, Texas and California, this CD is brilliantly paced and stylishly produced without being pretentious or formulated. This CD will most certainly be remembered as one of the truly great blues albums of the 90's.

--- Steve Hinrichsen

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