Title - 'Sweet Release'
Artist - Reese Wynans and Friends
For those not in the know, Reese Wynans is best known as keyboard legend and member of Stevie Ray Vaughan & Double Trouble.
Indeed, Reese was in that iconic band from 1985 until Vaughan's tragic death in 1990.
Releasing his first solo album in his 50-year career, Sweet Release (out March 1st, 2019 via J&R Adventures / Mascot Label Group / Provogue Records) is produced by Joe Bonamassa and features incredible guests such as: Kenny Wayne Shepherd, Warren Haynes, Vince Gill, Keb' Mo, Doyle Bramhall II, Bonnie Bramlett, Sam Moore, Chris Layton and more!
2. 'Say What!'
3. 'That Driving Beat'
4. 'You're Killing My Love'
5. 'Sweet Release'
6. 'Shape I'm In'
7. 'Hard To Be'
8. 'Riviera Paradise'
9. 'Take The Time'
10. 'So Much Trouble'
11. 'I've Got A Right To Be Blue'
12. 'Soul Island'
To say that the entire 13-track album (whose title is a nod to Boz Scaggs’ acclaimed catalogue that Wynans was a big part of) is a celebration of the music that influenced Reese and so many others is beyond putting it mildly.
For Sweet Release, from the opening chords of 'Crossfire' on through the melodic solo piano output of the final cut, 'Blackbird,' is not only a massive showcase of love and devotion and thanks to SRV & Double Trouble via their songs, but other bands of the genre such as the Allman Brothers, bluesmen Otis Rush and Tampa Red.
Also backed here by his Double Trouble bandmates Tommy Shannon and Chris Layton, based on the stunning musical quality of this album, quite why its taken this long for Wynans to bring out solo work is beyond me.
Tracks such as the aforementioned 'Crossfire' (with lead vocals here from Sam Cooke) meld seamlessly with cuts such as 'Say What!', 'Shape I'm In' (all of which feature Kenny Wayne Shepherd on guitar, the latter on vocals also) and both 'Hard To Be' (with Joe Bonamassa on Baritone guitar) and one of my own personal favorites here, the quite infectiously brilliant SRV blues jam 'Riviera Paradise' (with both Bonamassa and KWS on guitars!)
Doyle Bramhall II takes center stage with lead vocals and guitar on Otis Rush's foot-tappin' gem 'You're Killing My Love,' whilst the title track features a melding of vocals from such notables as Vince Gill, Keb’ Mo’, Warren Haynes, Bonnie Bramlett and more.
Bonamassa has long been a fan of Wynans’ work, urging him to create a solo album and championing the project as producer.
"Reese inspires me every day,” Bonamassa professes. “He encouraged me and was the heart and soul of the entire session. All the guest artists performed brilliantly and totally brought their best stuff from the very down beat."
"It was not lost on Reese nor me how blessed we were to work with such talent. All I know is what I know ... I love the man... He is as gracious and a gentleman as he is talented and an icon.”
Over the last five decades, you might have discovered Wynans forging his path with the early nucleus of the Allman Brothers Band or taking the stage with Boz Scaggs or, most likely, saving the ’80s blues scene with Stevie Ray Vaughan’s Double Trouble.
But, no matter where you first heard him, or how long you've been a fan of his work, Sweet Release is an album that is, without a shadow of a doubt, a must have in your record collections.
And yes, I said record collections as this gorgeously heartfelt and blues honest album will also be released as a wondrous 2LP vinyl set!
Amazon CD Purchase Link