Lucky Peterson – Live In Marciac/ July 28th 2014 – Jazz Village (CD + DVD) JV 570076.77, 75:29 (Distr. by Harmonia mundi) ****:
(Lucky Peterson – guitar, organ, vocals; Marvin Hollie – keyboards; Shawn Kellerman – guitar, vocals; Raul Valdes – drums; special guest Joe Satriani – guitar track 14)
Like many blues performers, Lucky Peterson began playing a classical instrument (French horn). But this was someone whose destiny to perform blues was ordained as a young child performing on Ed Sullivan, The Tonight Show and What’s My Line. He had a solo album in 1969 as a five year old. His first creditable band experience was with Etta James, Bobby “Blue” Bland and Little Milton. As a solo performer he has recorded with several labels including Alligator, Verve and Blue Thumb. In 2014, Peterson signed with Jazz Village Records. His latest release is a CD + DVD set, Lucky Peterson – Live In Marciac/ July 28th 2014.
The opening track of this set is deceptive. After a slow, bluesy solo, “Boogie Thang” (with Shawn Kellerman playing lead guitar and handling vocals) erupts with rocket-fueled boogie glory. The frenetic play is interrupted with a welcome to the Jazz In Marciac Festival. After a flashy introduction, Lucky Peterson takes the stage. With prominent Hammond organ licks, Peterson electrifies “Funky Broadway”, doing proper justice to Wilson Pickett The band is rocking with unbridled fervor. The selection of numbers is unusual. Johnny Nash’s “I Can See Clearly” is hardcore gospel blues. The extended nine-and-a-half- minute jam is funky and exhibits a high note of showmanship. At the 4:50 mark, Peterson launches into a soulful organ solo. He joins himself in a synthesized jam before the band finishes up. The funky approach continues on “It Ain’t Safe”, but with a Sunday morning church feel. In slower tempo, “Trouble” is a ballad with r & b sentiment.
The mood picks up with some Chicago-style blues on “Lock Out Of Love”, as Peterson moves to guitar. The jagged runs and lusty vocals amp up the crowd. This harder edge continues on another original composition “Make My Move On You”, which features a breathtaking guitar solo. In a heartfelt tribute, Peterson does a 1:38 tribute to Stevie Ray Vaughan’s “Pride And Joy”. Initiating another change of pace, “Nana Jarnell” exudes a quieter late night resonance, but still exhibits intensity. Peterson is equally skilled at guitar and organ. A “solo” two-minute organ intro (“Goin’ Down Slow”) morphs into an explosive, rocking soul number, “Jody’s Got Your Girl and Gone”. Peterson has the crowd in the palm of his hand and doesn’t let up. “Boogie Woogie Blues Party” is a wild romp (like a Little Richard jam) and he finishes with all of the fanfare of a great performer. For the encore, Peterson invites Joe Satriani to the stage for a mind-blowing rendition of the signature electric guitar song, “Johnny B. Goode”. Satriani simply tears it up bringing a spirited concert to a memorable close.
The accompanying DVD is a no-frills crisply shot video of this same set. It is great blues music.
TrackList CD + DVD: Boogie Thang; Funky Broadway; I Can See Clearly Now; It Ain’t Safe; Trouble; Lock Out Of Love; Make My Move On You; Tribute To Stevie Ray Vaughan; Nana Jarnell; I’m Still Here; Goin’ Down Slow; Jody’s Got Your Girl And Gone; Boogie Woogie Blues Party; Johnny B. Goode – “Encore”