Gotta Keep Rollin’
Marquee Records/Vizztone 2014
Review by David Bowling
Rob Stone traces his musical lineage back to the post World War II Chicago blues but he has modernized those roots into a energetic fusion of blues and rock.
He honed his craft as the harpist for drummer Sam Lay’s band during the mid-1990’s. He formed his own band during 1998 and is now about to issue his fourth album as a band leader titled Gotta Keep Rollin.’
The vocalist/harmonica player is accompanied by his long-time band mates Chris James (guitar), Patrick Ryan (bass), and Willie Hayes (drums), plus such guests as saxophonist Eddie Shaw and pianist David Maxwell.
The album is a combination of originals and classic covers. The album blasts off with a forceful rendition of Johnny Jones’ “Wait Baby.” This leads to forceful covers of Billy Emerson’s “Move Baby Move,” “Willie McTell’s “Cold Winter Day,” and Cornelius Green’s “It’s Easy When You Know How.”
Stone, James, and Ryan comprise a formidable writing team as they combine their talents on six compositions. Songs such as “Lucky 13,” “Anything can Happen,” “Strolling With Sasquatch,” and “Blues Keep Rollin’ On” are all fine examples of modern day blues as they create deep textures for Stone’s voice and harmonica.
Rob Stone is a straight-forward, no-nonsense blues artist. Gotta Keep Rollin’ is a fine example of modern day blues and deserves a listen.