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Happy Hosting, Happy New Year - Rob Ellen
Singer, guitarist and bandleader Peter Veteska was born in Manhattan in 1959 and started playing guitar round the age of 12, learning through listening to the likes of Derek & The Dominoes and The Allman Brothers. Almost a decade later, he packed up playing and only returned to it after a quarter of a century had elapsed. As he puts it, “I was the new kid on the block yet I was in my early 50s”. Perhaps it is because of this that his music sounds both fresh and lived-in. He’s a blues player now, as such tracks as the opening ‘Don’t Wanna Leave Memphis’ and the cover of ‘T-Bone Shuffle’ easily prove, though one happy to draft in funk (try ‘In Demand’), vintage rock and roll (Fats Domino’s ‘Blue Monday’ and ‘Don’t Cheat On My Lady’), tough rock as on ‘Alibi’, and jazz – ‘For All We Know’. It’s an energetic approach, with the sound of the basic four-piece Blues Train augmented by the meaty sax playing of Danny Walsh and the Hammond playing of Jeff Levine, and ‘Rodeo (No BS)’ puts it quite plainly that what we can expect from Peter and company is a blues show. There is a fine duet between Peter and Vanessa Vause on ‘Getting Closer Now’ (which also has some nice harp playing from Gary Neuwirth), and the declamatory title track has shades of blues-rock, whilst the CD closes out with the back to basics acoustic blues of ‘Worried Life Blues’.
No massive pretensions about this one, just good solid blue-collar blues and a little rock, and the whole album certainly well worth a listen.
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