Blues Bytes


May 2011

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Too Slim and the Taildraggers
Underworld Records

Too Slim

Shiver (Underworld Records) is the 16th album release for Too Slim and the Taildraggers in a storied 25-year history. Too Slim (Tim Langford) is not only a master of slide guitar, but he’s also a composer of the highest regard. He’s penned 12 winners for his latest effort, touching on not just blues, but blues/rock and Americana. The Taildraggers (drummer Tommy Cook and new bass player Polly O’Keary) are as potent as ever, providing powerhouse musical support, with O’Keary helping out in the vocal department as well.

Even though the opener, “Stoned Again,” starts out innocently enough with some acoustic slide, the song quickly shifts gears and Langford plugs in and rips some amazing electric slide. The following tune, “Daddies Bones,” is a stunning change of pace, with Langford recounting a chilling tale of a missing father, punctuated with some piercing lead guitar and brisk Hammond B-3 from guest Joe Doria. The rocker “Can’t Dress It Up” is a biting take on reality TV, aided by the Texas Horns.

Curtis Salgado contributes his amazing vocals to the inspirational “Everybody’s Got Something,” and also sings the intro track, “I Heard Voices.” “Workin’” is a barbed gripe about the current economic plight of the everyday working man. “She Sees Ghosts” is a humorous tale about a dog who sees things that others cannot. “As The Tears Go By” is a tasty blues/rocker that would have been a good fit on an SRV recording. The title track features Langford’s son, Austin Elwood, on lead guitar as father lets it all hang out on vocals for this remorseful rocker about wrong decisions and bad choices.

If you’re a Too Slim and the Taildraggers fan, chances are better than average that you already have this disc. If you’re unfamiliar with this talented artist, Shiver is a great place to start the learning experience. You will be pleased to discover a supremely talented performer and composer who ranks with the best that blues/rock has to offer.

--- Graham Clarke


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