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Crawdaddy, The: Luxury Muscle
Richard The Crawdaddy Dance Luxury Muscle new music review

Crawdaddy, The: Luxury Muscle

American Blues/Funk/Roots Music
Rating: 4.5/5.0

Of Richard 'The Crawdaddy' Dance, blues guitar legend Albert Collins once spoke, 'Mr. Crawdaddy, I dig your style. It's like Memphis, New Orleans, and Muscle Shoals all livin' in the same man!' The description is apt for Dance who has a solid grasp on American roots music from rock to blues, from funk to fonk, from cajun to soul. As well he should. The Crawdaddy, born and raised in the American south suckled on Dr. John and the Neville Brothers. Yet, his influences are international as he has traveled the south to Dubai, Brisbane, Athens, Munich and all points in between. Along the way he's shared the stage with musicians as diverse as BB King, Tina Turner, Count Basie, Stevie Nicks, Lyle Lovett and a host of others. While show and stage has been his venue forty plus years, Richard Dance has been laying his musical roots down in the studio. Luxury Muscle is his second studio release.

On Luxury Muscle Richard Dance happily indulges his history and reveals his first love: sincere organic American roots music. Twelve songs unfold on this disc comprised of five originals from Mr. Crawdaddy and seven covers. The originals display Dance's deft handling of his musical peers with Happy Fonk Day to You being my favorite.

The covers not only reveal Dance's influences but also his diverse musical foundation. Johnny Guitar Watson (What the Hell is This?) and Jimi Hendrix (Stone Free) show us some inspired interpretive blues fret work. See Saw written by Steve Cropper and Don Covay for Aretha Franklin display Crawdaddy's love for classic R&B. Covay appears again with cowriter Ron Miller for the Wilson Pickett song Three Time Loser, one of the best songs on Luxury Muscle

Blues-based hard rock is not lost on Crawdaddy as he covers Bad Company's Rock Steady with definite bend towards soul. Yet, Dance's real skill may be when he presses his on influence on known song. Thankfully, Crawdaddy has the musical chops and history to pull it off. Hendrix's Stone Free has inherent free form quality, and Dance manipulates it with entertaining acumen. Equally entertaining is his version of Ray Charles's Let's Go Get Stoned as the movement can be as leisurely as one who has just toked up. But, the most intriguing, and some might say most perplexing piece, is his arrangement of ZZ Top's Arrested for Driving While Blind. You'll know it when you here it, but after that, well, be prepared to smile from ear to ear. It's a dandy.

And that may just sum up Luxury Muscle: this is a fine work which displays Richard 'The Crawdaddy' Dance's love for the best of American roots music. Dance handles every song with appreciative love and dedication. Quite recommended!

In Short

Luxury Muscle is a fine work which displays Richard 'The Crawdaddy' Dance's love for the best of American roots music. Dance handles every song with appreciative love and dedication. Quite recommended!

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