February 2015

Hans Theessink Fifty Years on the Road


Submitted by Iain Patience

For the past fifty years or so Hans Theessink has been on the road, an international blues-trail that has taken him from his hometown of Enschede in the Netherlands through the USA, UK, Australia and most of Europe. Each year brings fresh challenges and his well-known Birthday Bashes have spawned CDs, DVDs and become a regular feature in his touring calendar, taking him back home to his base in Austria's capital city, Vienna. Theessink started out as a 9-year-old kid with a Mandolin, an instrument that introduced him to playing and which eventually led to his picking up a guitar a few years later.

At around the age of 12 or 13, he taught himself his first few basic guitar chords, having previously taken Mandolin lessons. Initially he concentrated on the music of the time, sixties folk-inspired stuff from Pete Seeger, Donovan, Dylan, Woody Guthrie, The Kingston Trio and Joan Baez.  He was turned-on to blues after hearing the picking of Big Bill Broonzy on Radio Luxemburg, a chance encounter he describes ‘was a key experience' in his musical development:
'At the time I didn't know it was blues but I liked what I heard, beautiful fingerpicking (sounded like three people playing at once), great singing and lots of emotion.' Theesink recalls.

Before long, the teenage Theessink had discovered the work of Mississippi John Hurt, Leadbelly, Lightin'Hopkins, Elizabeth Cotton, Sleepy John Estes, Brownie McGhee, Fred McDowell and a raft of others. It would be true to say he never looked back.

Joe B. Maudlin Will Not Fade Away

Joe B. Maudlin (Centre).jpg

Submitted by Don Graham

Bassist with the Crickets, Joe B. Maudlin, has died of cancer in Nashville,Tennessee at age 74. He passed away just days after the anniversary of the death of Buddy Holly, his former boss (Februrary 3, 1959.) Mauldin, like Holly was a Lubbock, Texas, native, and took over bass duties from Larry Welborn just after the Crickets recorded their initial single, 1957′s ‘That’ll Be the Day’. Together they would release a string of hits in quick succession after ‘That’ll Be the Day’ topped the charts including ‘Oh, Boy!,’ ‘Maybe Baby,’ ‘Peggy Sue’ and ‘Rave On,’  and that was only through 1958. “It did feel like everything was happening super fast,” Mauldin later was quoted as saying.

Good Times Jim Galloway

Good Times Jim Galloway.jpg

Submitted by Sandy Graham

Jim Galloway aka ‘Jimmy G’ is certainly no stranger to the concert stage or recording industry. It was this incredible ability of songwriting, performing and front man for the CBS Record deal in 1990 for The White Heat ‘we never heard of you either’ album went on to sell more than 130,000 units in Canada and worldwide.

From the first opening track, ‘Drown in the River of Doubt’ this engaging singer/songwriter had me hooked. Reminiscent of Jesse Colin Young, JD Souther and American Beauty Grateful Dead tunes, it is hard to believe this is a Canadian lad, offering up a bit of the South and a bit of rock ‘n’ roll.

‘Sun’ is a refreshingly clean track, that shows the talent of this singer’s voice and offers up wonderfully optimistic lyrics; then ‘These Are the Good Times’ gets funky in a John Martyn kinda way, once again focusing on the great lyrics and solid production you can’t help but smile.’Morning Rain’ sounds like early Boz Scaggs with a really full rock production showing how versatile this artist is; ‘Say Goodbye’ starts off with acoustic guitar and the haunting vocals with a saddened end to summertime or love lost.

‘Leavin’ In September’ shows the influence of rock with Jim Galloway excelling in strong vocals, while ‘Where Do We Go From Here’ asks the eternal question when love hits the rocky road and you have to decide where to to go from here, tasty piano parts and sweet harmonies make this song soar in production.

Phil Woods: Out of the Woods

Phil Woods Photo Credit Tom Marcello

Submitted by Bill King

Photo Credit: Tom Marcello


Saxophonist Phil Woods now 83 years old has had a long and varied career.  His early studies at Juilliard led to playing with Jimmy Raney, Charlie Barnet, Dizzy Gillespie, Quincy Jones, Benny Goodman and a host of others, along with leading his own bands.  In 2007, Phil received a "Jazz Master" award from the National Endowment of the Arts. Woods' recordings have been nominated for seven Grammy Awards and have won four.

1975 Images: "Best Large Jazz Ensemble Performance".
1977 Live from the Show Boat: "Best Instrumental Jazz Performance, Individual or Group".
1982 More Live: "Best Instrumental Jazz Performance, Individual or Group".
1983 At the Vanguard: "Best Instrumental Jazz Performance, Individual or Group".

I had a great conversation with Phil about his music and history behind it the summer of 1991.

BK:  The way you play alto saxophone summarizes the history of the instrument. With many of the notable players long gone, do you find yourself being an influence on the up and coming group of younger players?
Phil:  I like to think that I’ve been able to advance the alto tradition. I always remind them to listen to everybody.  Make sure you listen to Benny Carter, Johnny Hodges, Eric Dolphy and all the others.  I guess I’m a conduit in that sense.  I’ve been doing it forty years. I should stand for something.

Proudly Canadian Lighthouse

Lighthouse 1992.jpg

Submitted by Cashbox Canada
Source: Wikipedia

Lighthouse is a Canadian rock band formed in 1968 in Toronto which included horns, string instruments, and vibraphone; their music reflected elements of rock music, jazz, classical music, and swing. They won Juno Awards for Best Canadian Group of the Year in 1972, 1973 and 1974.