After years as a road warrior, including stints with blues maestro Johnny Copeland (and B.B. King, Stevie Ray Vaughan, and Robert Cray along the way), Latin music stars such as Johnny Pacheco and Johnny Colon, as well as jazz bands, circus bands, and Midwest territory dance orchestras, trumpet player and composer Ben Bierman has come up with a take on the blues all his own. These nine original compositions incorporate a wide range of influences and an open-minded approach that goes far beyond the traditional 12-bar form.
Some Takes On the Blues is a very personal record that beautifully combines thoughtful composition and an improvisational vibe, and just as importantly, it’s a fun and pretty album that’s great at a party and for chilling at home. The record also features Ben’s work as a multi-instrumentalist, playing guitar, piano, and bass, as well as his lyrical trumpet.
See the booklet here.
- Bolero Blues (4:24) A fun and funky Latin boogaloo-inspired jam with percussionist Willie Martinez.
- Carmel Meets Shrader (4:05) A Count Basie-Kansas City style 12-bar blues duet with Nashville guitarist Andy Reiss.
- Pretty Blues (3:54) A mellow multi-section composition that includes a 32-bar blues.
- Leo’s Rag (2:08) A finger picking solo guitar rag.
- Valeria Street Blues (3:15) An old-school slow blues with Andy Reiss and drummer Terry Silverlight.
- Let’s Chill One (5:00) A chill-vibe 48-bar blues with percussionist Emanuel Bierman.
- AC Shuffle (3:26) A country blues-style duet with Bierman on guitar and trumpet.
- Blues for WC (2:59) A mellow and pretty multi-strain solo piano blues composition with W.C. Handy in mind.
- Dum Dee Dim (3:47) A multi-section piece that changes feels constantly, including cha cha chá, a 6/8 feel, rumba, and swing. Percussionist Willie Martinez makes it work.
Total time: 33:12