Blues Bytes


April 2014

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Arthur Migliazza
Laying It Down
CD Baby

Arthur MigliazzaArthur Migliazza began playing his neighbor’s piano as a young child, and was prodigious enough that his parents got him piano lessons. A teacher introduced him to jazz and blues and he began playing along with old blues recordings. As a teenager, he met Ann Rabson at a music workshop in West Virginia and Rabson became his mentor. He began moving toward the boogie woogie style, and represented Arizona in the IBC in 2010, making the finals that year and more recently, representing Washington State.

Migliazza recently released a fantastic CD, Laying It Down (CD Baby), that will be absolute delight to fans of boogie woogie piano. Employing some of the Northwest’s finest musicians, Migliazza rips through a dazzling set of nine covers and four original tunes, putting his own personal spin on the genre and pumping new life into an already lively style of music.

Migliazza takes on classic tunes from Albert Ammons (“Boogie Woogie Shuffle” and “The Boogie Rocks”), Meade Lux Lewis (“Honky Tonk Train Blues”), Hersal Thomas (“Suitcase Blues”), and W.C. Handy (“St. Louis Blues”). He also gives a nod to New Orleans with several tunes, including Fats Domino’s “I’m Ready,” Huey “Piano” Smith’s “Rockin’ Pneumonia & the Boogie Woogie Flu,” Paul Barbarin’s “Bourbon Street Parade,” Louis Prima’s “Sing Sing Sing” (combined with the early 60’s hit, “Bumble Boogie”), and a Professor Longhair tribute, “Professor Calling Me,” that incorporates Fess’ “Tipitina” riff.

Migliazza’s own songs are equally top notch. The opener, “Overture,” has elements of jazz, classical, funk, and the Crescent City blended together, and accented by Jeff Fielder’s wah-wah guitar. “Thank You Blues” has a moody, after-hours vibe, and “Love You Mama” is a Chicago-styled song of love and appreciation to his mother.

Laying It Down is an amazing release. It’s energetic, vibrant, joyful, and exuberant, just like the music itself.

--- Graham Clarke
Read Graham's blog


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