Hyde and Seek                                                                                                                                              HS2014 Little-know San Francisco Bay Area harmonica blower Neil Barnes has long had a talent for producing recordings on which he surrounds himself with some of the region's finest musicians.  Billed as Bar-B-q Barnes, he cut a series of sessions between 1980 and 1982 with such players as guitarists Ron Thompson, Junior Watson, Luther Tucker, Mississippi Johnny Waters and Sonny Lane, pianists Little Willie Littlefield, Sid Morris and Mark Naftalin, bassist Bill Stuve and drummer Francis Clay- of which the Barnes composition Blues For Breakfast, featuring Thompson's vocals and Littlefields piano, is especially memorable.  Barnes issued 15 tracks from that period in 2007 on a CD titled This Was Then, Now.    Barnes recorded a new CD earlier this year at San Francisco's Hyde Street Studio titled Hyde and Seek.  Thompson is back on hand to lend some slashing slide guitar to ensemble arrangements, as well as deliver an impassioned vocal rendition of the 1953 Faye Adams hit Shake A Hand.  San Diego's Earl Thomas handles the majority of the lead vocals on the nine-song set, singing in powerful, low tenor tones with precise enunciation.  Oakland singer Lady Bianca duets with Thomas on an effusive, gospel-styled reading of Bridge Over Troubled Water and on a rousing remake of the 1983 gospel classic Rough Side Of The Mountain by F.C. Barnes and Sister Janice Brown.  She also plays piano and contributes backup vocals in harmony with Tia Carroll.  Barnes himself weaves clear-toned, melodically rich mouth harp in a manner that brings to mind Lee Oscar of War.  Organist Reverend Paul Smith, bassist Oshmin Oden (Bianca's son) and drummer Winfred Williams complete the personnel.    There's only one 12-bar blues in the set, Don't Let The Devil Ride, which is actually a gospel blues that was penned by reverend Oris Mays and popularized by Brother Joe may.  Among other selections on this outstanding, highly electric disc are Allen Toussaint's When Can I Come Home and Tears, Tears and More Tears, Joe Droukas' Heart Like A Locomotive (previously recorded by Paul Butterfield) and Cage The Elephant's Ain't No Rest For The Wicked.  ” - Lee Hildebrand

Living Blues Magazine

THIS BLUES HAS SOUL by Dan Forte (c) 2015; reprinted by permission of the author; from Vintage Guitar Magazine. Blues harpist Neil Barnes is one of the greater San Francisco area's best-kept secrets. His 2007 CD, This Was Then, Now, is a compilation of a 45 and EP he released in the '80's, along with some previously unreleased live material. For having such a small recorded  output, he sure knows how to get results in the studio. As producer, his concept here was to focus on the soul/gospel side of the blues, with a dash of New Orleans spice.  On guitar is Ron Thompson, another Bay Area fixture and one of the best blues guitarists anywhere, straight or slide. Vocals are handled by Earl Thomas and Lady Bianca, with the latter's piano teaming with Rev. Paul Smith's B-3 for that perfect church vibe. The solid but supple rhythm section section of bassist Oshmin Oden and drummer Winfred Williams complete the ensemble, with everyone singing and playing live in the room at San Fran's famed Hyde Street Studios, used by acts as diverse as James Brown, the Grateful Dead, Herbie Hancock, and Green Day. Closing with Allen Toussaint's "Tears, Tears, And More Tears" (besting Lee Dorsey's original hit), it's hard imagine achieving results like this any other way.    ” - Dan Forte

Vintage Guitar Magazine

NEIL BARNES Hyde And Seek (Neil Barnes Music)   Veteran blues harpist and producer Neil Barnes released Hyde And Seek on CD in 2015. The 9 track CD is an all star blues-rock album featuring the cream of the crop of San Francisco Bay Area blues greats including singer Earl Thomas, Lady Bianca (piano, vocals) Rev. Paul Smith (organ), Ron Thompson (guitars) and much more, all backing up Barnes on his wailing harmonica. For the most part, Hyde And Seek is mostly a hard hitting blues rock set but a heartfelt cover of “Bridge Over Troubled Water” (subtitled here as “A Song For Jill”) adds another dimension to the album. There’s just one original here, written by singer Earl Thomas, with the CD mostly featuring tracks penned by Oris Mays, Allen Toussaint and the above mentioned Earl Thomas. Speaking about Hyde And Seek, Barnes explains, “I wanted to move forward with a gospel blues release because these particular songs resonate with me. I can only begin to tell you how excited we are to share Hyde & Seek with the world. This is a unique collaboration of world class musicians.” Music fans take note: Hyde And Seek is one of the coolest blues-rock albums of the decade. www.NeilBarnesMusic.com ” - Robert Setven Silverstein

MW3E.com

Hyde And Seek – featuring Earl Thomas, Lady Bianca. Ron Thompson & Neil Barnes Self-produced CD 9 songs – 42 minutes www.neilbarnesmusic.com San Francisco-based producer Neil Barnes came up with the idea for this concept album, which features gospel-tinged blues as it fuses together some of the best musical talent the Bay Area has to offer. A skilled, but under-recorded harmonica player, Barnes fell in love with all of the tunes contained here and assembled the talent to put them out for the world to hear. A student of Charlie Musselwhite, he fronted the band Bar-B-Q Barnes and the Rib Tones in the ‘80s before an acoustic duo career, but he’s remained primarily in the background. He’s acquired some pretty powerful friends along the way, however. He recruited three-time Grammy nominated vocalist/keyboardist Lady Bianca, former John Lee Hooker bandleader Ron Thompson, a guitarist with seven stellar CDs of his own, and West Coast soul blues superstar Earl Thomas to join him in the famed Hyde Street Studio — where James Brown, Green Day, Herbie Hancock and the Grateful Dead all laid down tracks — to bring this work to fruition. They’re aided by the Rev. Paul Smith — who’s worked with Ike and Tina Turner, Bill Withers and Natalie Cole — on organ and a top-notch rhythm section: Oshmin Oden on bass and Winfred Williams on drums. Tia Carroll, another Bay Area treasure, provides backing vocals on two songs while Barnes adds harp throughout. Available through CDBaby and iTunes, the disc opens with Bianca and Thomas sharing vocals for the powerful “Don’t Let The Devil Ride.” Penned by the Rev. Oris Mays, it may be familiar to some blues fans, having been previously covered by Lurrie Bell. The steady shuffle provides a good clue as to what will follow: A heaping helping of solid blues with a positive message. Thomas takes command for the slow tempo “Heart Like A Locomotive,” a Joe Droukas original, which delivers a message of faith brimming with positive images of love in a relationship affected by separation. Next up, Thomas and Bianca team to deliver “Ain’t No Rest For The Wicked,” an uptempo number first delivered by the rock band Cage The Elephant, before the band put their own spin on the Simon and Garfunkel ‘60s chart-topper, “A Song For Jill (Bridge Over Troubled Water).” The harmonica-and-keyboard lead-in take it straight to church with Bianca leading the choir. The first of two Allen Toussaint tunes on the CD, “When Can I Come Home,” Allen Toussaint follows with Thomas taking command. He yields vocals to guitarist Thompson for the familiar “Shake A Hand,” giving a churchy feel to what was a hit for Faye Adams in 1953. The ensemble dips into the catalog of Malaco/Atlanta International Records gospel superstar, the Rev. F.C. Barnes for “Rough Side Of The Mountain” before the Thomas original, “Just One Word.” Another Toussaint standard, the syncopated, uptempo “Tears, Tears And More Tears,” concludes the set. This is a great CD on many levels. The musicianship and messages shine. And if you’re not a religious or spiritual person, have no fear: Despite the gospel flavor, the religious message always bubbles beneath the surface in a way certain not to offend. Play it loud and enjoy! For a free track off this great album, check out our May Blues Overdose feature on soundcloud at https://soundcloud.com/bluesblast Reviewer Marty Gunther has lived a blessed life. His first experience with live music came at the feet of the first generation of blues legends at the Newport Folk Festivals in the 1960s. A former member of the Chicago blues community, he’s a professional journalist and blues harmonica player who co-founded the Nucklebusters, one of the hardest working bands in South Florida.” - Marty Gunther

Blues Blast Magazine, Issue 9-23 June 4, 2015

  Original e-mail review from Ron Haney to John_InHouston PR: More frequently than not these days new blues releases tend to fall into a homogenous mix of over-produced, over distorted and even over-played attempts to showcase the artist’s “blues-ness”. I am, and have always been, of the opinion that if someone is a true blues they don’t need to try so hard to convince listeners of their authenticity. This can muddy the music and come off as just what it is...an attempt to convince someone of something that just isn’t there naturally.   Neil Barnes, on his latest CD release, Hyde and Seek, has gathered a group of musicians and vocalists that are so true to the genre they couldn’t hide it if they wanted to. From the first track, Don’t Let the Devil Ride, to the last, Tears, Tears and More Tears, the listener is taken on a blues pilgrimage that exemplifies what the genre is all about while at the same time embracing the essence of other powerful genres like gospel, rock and even R&B.   It’s so refreshing to hear a group of players and artists just simply do their material without trying to convince us of anything. When the true authenticity and God-given gifts are present and allowed to speak forth no convincing is necessary. The music, message and delivery stands for itself.   This project sets the standard for all other blues artists (of any particular sub-persuasion) to mark time and essence. Sit down, put it in your player and set aside time to absorb what is coming out of your speakers. You will be transported on a journey far to rare in today’s music. Not a total blues fan? No problem, there is something here for lovers of many styles of music. But, most of all, let the music and the message of each song drive. Once you return, you will certainly know you have been some place special.                                                                                                                             Ron Haney- Take One Creative www.take1creative.com P.S. By the way, John...you are precisely correct...this project is cross-over material if there ever has been one. Personally, I like the mixture of soulfulness, rockin', honest approach to the entire album. The gospel influences, in my opinion, will do much to drive the cd into a number of other niches, as well. Thanks for turning me on to this group of artists. It's great to know they are out there keeping it real and keeping it going. I feel like I just found a one hundred dollar bill in an old suit! Ron” - Ron Haney

— E-mail Review to John_InHouston PR

Hyde and Seek Featuring: Earl Thomas, Lady Bianca, Rev. Paul Smith, & Ron Thompson Neil Barnes Music Producer Neil Barnes put together this gospel blues ensemble because he finds this music especially moving. He hand picked the first few participants and the rest of the project just fell into place. All of the band members have a background in gospel music. Earl Thomas is the emotive West Coast singer who performs with his band The Blues Ambassadors. The Rev. Paul Smith, Hammond B-3, has played with Ike and Tina Turner, Bill Withers, and Natalie Cole. Ron Thompson the legendary guitarist and former bandleader for John Lee Hooker has seven albums of his own. Pianist/vocalist Lady Bianca has worked with everyone from Willie Dixon to Van Morrison and has six albums including three that have been Grammy nominated. The rhythm section includes Oshmin Oden, bass; and Winfred Williams, drums. Producer Barnes who, in the early 1980’s, performed as Bar-B-Q Barnes and The Rib-Tones proves he hasn’t lost his touch as he plays harp throughout the recording. Barnes selected to record at the famous Hyde Street Recording Studio in San Francisco which gave the session some additional inspiration. The song selection was a collective effort. The opening track “Don’t Let the Devil Ride” was written by the late Rev. Oris L. Mays. The song also appears on Lurrie Bell’s 2012 recording “The Devil Ain’t Got No Music”. Thomas and Bianca share the vocal. “Heart Like a Locomotive” was written by Joe Droukas and appears on his 2006 recording “Bare Branches”. Thomas sings lead but is joined by both Bianca and Tia Carroll who sing the background vocals. It was first recorded by Paul Butterfield in 1986. “Ain’t No Rest for The Wicked” was written by the rock band “Cage The Elephant”. Once again the vocal is shared between Thomas and Bianca. “A Song For Jill” was originally titled “Bridge Over Troubled Waters” and written by Paul Simon. This version is based on Aretha Franklin’s cover which won a Grammy Award for Best Female R&B Vocal Performance in 1972. Bianca sings lead but is joined by Thomas. “Shake a Hand” was written by trumpeter and bandleader Joe Morris and an R&B hit single for Faye Adams in 1953. The lead vocal is performed here by Ron Thompson. Singing backup are Thomas, Bianca and Carroll. “Rough Side of The Mountain” is from the Rev. F.C. Barnes, no relationship to Producer Barnes, and was recorded in 1990 on an album with the same title by the Rev. Barnes and the Rev. Janice Brown. Again the vocal is shared between Thomas and Bianca. “Just One Word” is written and sung by Thomas. “Tears, Tears and More Tears” and “When Can I Come Home” were written by Allen Toussaint and originally recorded by Lee Dorsey in 1970 and 1982 respectfully. These are sung by Thomas. This band of world class musicians is stellar throughout the recording. Without producer Barnes’ knowledge and direction this album could never have been completed. Better seek this one out.   Richard Ludmerer” - Richard Ludmerer

Making A Scene

HYDE AND SEEK (NEIL BARNES’ latest project)- V.A. “ More BBQ, blues & gospel with Neil Barnes & Friends… “ Mondharmonicaspeler / producer Neil Barnes is een veteraan van de San Francisco Bay Area Blues scene. Hij haalde zijn muzikale kennis in de late jaren ’70 voor 99% bij Gary Smith, die hij de “Godfather” van de blues in de baai van SF noemt. Zijn andere belangrijke inspiratiebron is Charlie Musselwhite, van wie hij thuis nog harmonica lessen kreeg. Barnes’ harmonica stijl is vooral beïnvloed door de Chicago “groten” en artiesten als Paul Butterfield, Muddy Waters, Charlie Musselwhite, Lee Oscar, The Band (Levon Helm), Robert Montes en Bob Gomes (Montes en Gomes spelen samen in de “Jackson Street” met Dave Gonzales). Van 1980 tot 1982 waren er in de kelder van een club in San Jose, CA, de  ‘Joshua's Blue Monday Parties’. Hier trad Barnes en de “Bar-B-Q Barnes & the Rib-Tones” op, met Hap Scott (bas / zang), Larry Calley (lead gitaar), Robert (drums), Bob Gomes (B3) en Sid Morris (piano). Soms waren er ook gasten aanwezig als Sonny Lane, Johnny Waters, Francis Clay en Luther Tucker, die mee jamden en die op die avond voor de “extra’s” zorgden. Neil Barnes geraakte er bevriend met Sonny Lane en met wie hij wel eens samen speelde. Verder werkte Neil Barnes ook als akoestisch duo samen met gitarist Greg Hartman. In 1980 nam Barnes onder zijn eigen label ‘RibTone Records een 45 toeren single op met twee eigen composities: “Blues For Breakfast" / "Close Call". Hij nam deze single op met Little Willie Littlefield als pianist, met Ron Thompson als zanger en slide gitarist, met Junior Watson als gitarist en met als ritme sectie Bill Stuve (bas) en Robert Montes (drums). Later volgen er nog meer albums met nog meer eigen werk en met een gewijzigde band. De nieuwkomers zijn Sonny Lane (gitaar), Bob Gomes (B3), Hap Scott (zang) en de legendarische Mark Naftalin (piano). Voor zijn laatste project “Hyde & Seek” trok Neil Barnes naar de West Coast en vroeg er aan bevriende, gerespecteerde muzikanten om mee te doen met zijn sessies. Hij kon zo in de opname studio rekenen op Earl Thomas (zang), Lady Bianca (piano, zang), Rev. Paul Smith (Hammond B3), Ron Thompson (gitaar, zang), Oshmin Oden (bas) en Winfred Williams (drums). "Hyde & Seek" bevat bewerkingen van songs van New Orléans’ veteraan Allen Toussaint en enkele (rock) gospel klassiekers. Het eerste nummer van de sessies ”Don’t Let The Devil Ride” van Rev. Oris Mays, is een krachtige blues song gezongen door Lady Bianca en Earl Thomas. Al direct staat Neil Barnes’ harmonica centraal en vullen de grooves de kamer. Wat daarna volgt is een rustig positief nummer, Joe Droukas’ ”Heart Like A Locomotive”, dat een boodschap van geloof en liefde brengt. Ook de rocker ”Ain’t No Rest For The Wicked” die hierna iedereen wakker schudt, wordt zoals de opener, gezongen door Bianca en Thomas. Het wordt daarna opnieuw rustiger met “The Bridge Over Troubled Water” (1970) klassieker van Simon & Garfunkel, die hier herwerkt is als ”A Song For Jill”. Op het album staan twee covers van Allen Toussaint. De eerste is een gospel ”When Can I Come Home” en wordt ingeleid door Barnes’ harmonica en het toetsenwerk van Bianca / Rev. Paul Smith. De andere Toussaint song is een klassieker, een uptempo, rockende gospel en afsluiter ”Tears, Tears And More Tears”. Joe Morris schreef de vredige slow ”Shake A Hand”, Ron Thompson doet (enkel op dit nummer) de zang en Faye Adams maakte er in 1951 een hit van. We hebben nog een geestelijke die in de sessies aan de beurt komt, nl. Rev. F.C. Barnes en zijn”Rough Side Of The Mountain”. Ook deze gospel swingt en werkt aanstekelig, zeker als Lady Bianca soloot. Dan blijft er nog een bluesy Earl Thomas nummer over ”Just One Word”, dat met het einde van het album in zicht, alles heel rustig inleidt. Earl Thomas doet nog eens de zang heel soulful, terwijl Smith op orgel ingetogen zijn grooves wegblaast en Barnes met zijn harmonica aanvult en verder afwerkt. De nacht doet daarna verder zijn werk.  Als je een Grammy winnares (Lady Bianca) in de studio verzamelt met nog meer fraais als de leider van de band van JL Hooker (Ron Thompson) en Rev. Paul Smith (Ike & Tina, Bill Withers), dan slaagt een project als dit van Neil Barnes “Hyde And Seek”, bijna probleemloos. Laat je op deze BBQ verleiden met heerlijke gospel en blues, want dit zal zeker smaken! Eric Schuurmans www.rootstime.be   Album tracks: 1”Don’t Let The Devil Ride” [Oris Mays] - 2”Heart Like A Locomotive” [Joe Droukas] - 3”Ain’t No Rest For The Wicked” [Matt Shultz, Lincoln Parish, Brad Shultz, Jared Champion, Daniel Tichenor] - 4”A Song For Jill” (Bridge Over Troubled Water) [Paul Simon, Aretha Franklin] - 5”When Can I Come Home” [Allen Toussaint] - 6”Shake A Hand” [Joe Morris] - 7”Rough Side Of The Mountain” [Rev. F.C. Barnes] - 8”Just One Word” [Earl Thomas] - 9”Tears, Tears And More Tears” [Allen Toussaint] – Produced by Neil Barnes Line-up:Earl Thomas: vocalsLady Bianca: piano, vocalsRev. Paul Smith: Hammond B3Ron Thompson: guitar, vocals (6)Oshmin Oden: bassWinfred Williams: drumsNeil Barnes: harmonicaTia Carroll: backup vocals (2,6) Discography:1980 : Bar-B-Q Barnes & the Rib-Tones: “45 Session” (single): Blues For Breakfast / Close Call - 45 rpm, with Little Willie Littlefield, Ron Thompson, Junior Watson & Bill Stuve (no longer available as single, but available on the "This Was Then, Now" CD)1981 : Bar-B-Q Barnes & the Ribtones: “EP Session”1981 : Bar-B-Q Barnes & Friends: Compilation CD (Includes both the 45 and EP Sessions)1985 : Bar-B-Q Barnes & Friends: “This Was Then, Now” - with Little Willie Littlefield, Ron Thompson, Bill Stuve, Mike “JR” Watson, Sonny Lane, Luther Tucker, Francis Clay  & Johnny Waters (a collection of studio & live recordings)    2014 : Hyde And Seek ” - Freddy Celis

Rootstime.be

Neil Barnes - Hyde and Seek   Laat ik maar gelijk met de deur in huis vallen, wat een geweldige album is dit concept album geworden. Het idee van Neil Barnes om een in gospel gedrenkte blues plaat te maken is meer dan uitstekend geslaagd. Met medewerking van tal van gasten als bijvoorbeeld Lady Bianca , Earl Thomas, Rev Smith en Ron Thompson blijft het niveau overal onwaarschijnlijk hoog. Ondanks dat de gospel nooit ver weg is overheerst dit niet. Dit album vraagt er gewoon om veel en luid te worden gedraaid. Een hemels album in vele opzichten.   TRANSLATION: Neil Barnes - Hyde and Seek   Let me fall right in the door at home, what a great album turned this concept album . The idea of ​​Neil Barnes tomake an impregnated in gospel blues plate is more than excellent succeeded. With the cooperation of numerousguests such as Lady Bianca, Earl Thomas , Rev. Smith and Ron Thompson , the level remains high throughoutunlikely . Although the gospel is never far away dominated not. This album is asking just to be turned many and loud. A heavenly album in many respects. ” - Max Joop Jan Van Der Ree

TASTE OF MUSIC - RUDOLF MUSIC

Four out of five stars The tracks of Hyde and Seek gifts the listener wiht subtle harp melofies which feeds the soul wiht delicious blues flavor and seasoned hints of gospel on each track. ” - Dew Allen-Wiuff

Mississippi Blues Club Magazine

015: STAVOLTA SIAMO CON NEIL BARNES… Stavolta siamo con ‘Hyde and Seek‘, l’ultimo progetto del produttore e armonicista Neil Barnes. Un concept-album, registrato al famigerato studio di Hyde Street a San Francisco, che vanta tra i clienti James Brown, Green Day, Herbie Hancock e i Grateful Dead. Barnes ha radunato i migliori talenti della Bay Area, tra cui Lady Bianca, Prima Signora di Oakland al pianoforte e alla voce, il chitarrista Ron Thompson, ex bandleader di John Lee Hooker, e il cantante Earl Thomas, gigante del soul blues. Il titolo dell’album gioca a nascondino, scherzando con la sede della sua realizzazione . Ma c’è poco da tenere nascosto, è un piccolo prodigio di blues contemporaneo, screziato di jazz, rock e gospel. D’altronde, con un equipaggio del genere era difficile passare inosservati. Appuntamento come sempre fissato per le 21.00 di giovedì sera fino alle 22.30. A cura del grande Edoardo Fassio. ➜LA PAGINA DI CB: radioflash.to/programmi/catfishblues Translation: 015: THIS TIME WE ARE WITH NEIL BARNES ... Neil_BarnesStavolta us with 'Hyde and Seek', the latest project of producer and harmonica player Neil Barnes. A concept album, recorded at the infamous study of Hyde Street in San Francisco, which features among thecustomers James Brown, Green Day, Herbie Hancock and the Grateful Dead. Barnes has assembled the best talent in the Bay Area, including the White Lady, First Lady of Oakland onpiano and vocals, guitarist Ron Thompson, former bandleader of John Lee Hooker, and the singer Earl Thomas,giant soul blues. The title of the album playing hide and seek, joking with its place of realization. But there is littleto keep hidden, it is a small marvel of contemporary blues, flecked with jazz, rock and gospel. Moreover, with a crew like that it was hard to go unnoticed. Appointment as always set for 21.00 on Thursday evening until 22.30. Edited by the great Edward Fassio. ➜LA PAGINA CB: radioflash.to/programmi/catfishblues ” - Edoardo Fassio

CATFISH BLUES - Edorado Fassio

Featured Blues Review 2 of 5 Neil “Bar-B-Q” Barnes and Friends - This Was Then, Now Self-Produced 15 songs; 61:46 minutes Styles: Traditional Electric Blues, Chicago Blues Tech experts are excited about a projected tipping point called the “singularity,” at which technology becomes so advanced that it can literally build and program itself. Will there ever be a point in the evolution of blues music when albums can almost compose themselves? Surely not, but that’s the interesting question proposed by the title of Dublin, CA’s Neil “Bar-B-Q” Barnes on his time-capsule album, “This Was Then, Now.” Of the fifteen 1980 - 82 vintage recordings, the five originals are excellent, solid blues offerings with an all-star studio line up. Too bad there wasn’t more of those to include. The last nine are covers recorded live in the early 1980s at various venues in the blues scene of the San Jose/ Santa Cruz CA area known as The "South Bay." One live highlight, however, is Luther Tucker singing and playing guitar on “Worried Life Blues.” Almost all of the covers are familiar to blues fans (e.g. “Got My Mojo Working,” “Sleep in a Hollow Log,” “The Mess Around,” and “Same Old Blues”). One could argue that the “blues singularity” has been reached, but Barnes explains: “The sound quality of the live recordings is a bit raw, but are included because I am fond of the songs and the musicians who performed them. I think the energy still comes through.” Indeed it does, but, again, the best offerings on this CD are the five originals. Three pack a wallop stronger than Autumn 2012’s Hurricane Sandy: Track 03: “One More Pallbearer”--Oct. 31st Halloween and Mexico’s Day of the Dead are upon us, and this song provides the perfect atmosphere. Vocalist Hap Scott laments: “It’s going to take one more pallbearer to put you in your grave. Six will put you in the ground; it’s going to take one more just to stifle your sound!” Barnes’ harp and Bob Gomes’ Hammond B-3 organ are frighteningly good beside guests on guitar Mike “Jr.” Watson and Sonny Lane. Track 04: “Bayshore Backup”--This perky instrumental features Mark Naftalin on piano, Bill Stuve on stand-up bass, guitarists Sonny Lane and Mike “Jr.” Watson, and Robert Montes on drums. Everyone is in full form, clapping and jiving along to the rhythms of San Francisco’s South Bay area. “Bayshore Backup’s” only flaw is that it’s too short, clocking in at three minutes--just when any dancers might be busting their biggest moves! Track 05: “Married Man Eyes”--People know the look, especially if they themselves are hitched: “You can see it in their eyes when the weekend comes. You start discussing your plans; they tell you they can’t come. They don’t want to hear about those good times--that girl got them on the run!” Be sure and listen closely to the opening commentary and the very end, because they’re the best parts. This reviewer would like to nominate “Married Man Eyes” as 2012’s funniest blues song! Other featured guest musicians are Ron Thompson – vocals and slide guitar, Little Willie Littlefield – piano, Francis Clay – drums, and Johnny Waters – vocals and guitar. The live tracks feature Barnes, Greg Hartman, Lex Silva, and Barnes and the Rib-Tones: Sid Morris, Hap Scott, Larry Calley, Bob Gomes, and Robert Montes. Overall, Bar-B-Q Barnes’ efforts are far above average; they knew how to play real-deal blues.Reviewer Rainey Wetnight is a 33 year old female Blues fan. She brings the perspective of a younger blues fan to reviews. A child of 1980s music, she was strongly influenced by her father’s blues music collection.  ” - Rainy Wetnight

Blues Blast Magazine