Monday, April 14, 2014

RECORD REVIEW: Robert Randolph "We Walk This Road"

We Walk This Road
Warner Brothers

I just found this piece
in a file containing 
some of my old
old reviews not
sure how it slipped
through the cracks.
Well, better late
than never. Right?

Described (by me) as the "Jimi Hendrix” of pedal steel, Robert Randolph released his 2001 debut record, Live at the Wetlands, the (then) 23-year-old electrified the music world with his unique blend of authentic, funky R&B and traditional blues. Although his subsequent records, Unclassified (2003) and Colorblind (2006) were geared more towards reaching a mainstream audience, Randolph returns in 2010 with We Walk This Road, a record that brings him back to his early gospel / blues roots.

Produced by Grammy-winner T-Bone Burnett (Elvis Costello, The Wallflowers, Counting Crows), We Walk This Road is an all-star effort featuring session appearances from the likes of Leon Russell, drum legend Jim Keltner and the slide guitar work of Ben Harper as well as songwriting contributions from Bob Dylan (“Shot of Love“), Prince (“Walk Don’t Walk”) and John Lennon (“I Don’t Want to be a Soldier Mama”).

Highlights include the downhome gospel-flavored “Traveling Shoes” (featuring the signature falsetto back-up vocals of longtime bassist Danyel Morgan), the aforementioned Dylan penned “Shot of Love” and “I Still Belong to Jesus” which possesses the rich, full-bodied flavor of Fleetwood Mac circa 1977.

Simply put, We Walk This Road is honest, pure and refreshingly inspirational. Make no mistake, Robert Randolph is back and Jesus and I both agree that this one is the real deal.

-Christopher Long
(July 2010)

Robert Randolph 

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