This debut album from maybe the most stellar undiscovered guitarist and stylist around. Boy Wells, aka Mark Schultz presents us with twelve original songs showcasing his blues, funk, country and rock roots. His vocals are heart felt, his lead guitar work is s-weet! Jazzy, bluesy, and masterful. And he plays slide and acoustic just as well.
A friend and protégé of the late, great guitar legend Danny Gatton, Wells made his bones with countless gigs, many road miles and uncounted hours in the studio, and now steps into the spotlight to share all that he knows and feels about music and life as well as his instrumental prowess, touch and emotive power.
The album opens with a New Orleans funk/jazz tune that hooked my ears up from the git-go, "Mr.Coluzzi", next is the screamin’ blues "World Weary and Blue" , track three is a southern rocker, “Bring It Back” before we get an instrumental improv on "Marcel Marsupial" which, believe it or not, is what the album art is all about, Mark’s hand, broken finger and all from a boyhood accident playing baseball.
The title track is another southern rocker, before we get to my absolute favorite tune on this great players album; “Love In Vain” features blues guitar mastery, and an almost Tom Waits, blues kind of feeling complete with a moaning sax and the guitar answering, it’s an old feeling tune about an emotion as old as the world. Just a fantastic track, and makes the album worth it even if you don’t like all the other great songs here.
Take a listen to this studio out take for a peek at the talent we are talkin’ about.
“Tova” is another of my favorites, a finger pickin’ acoustic guitar instrumental that makes you realize the Boy Wells is no one trick pony. On the two closing
bluegrass/country-flavored tracks, "Tin Winter" and "Traveller," Boy Wells takes the listener on a beautiful musical journey, accented by his tasteful and masterful guitar work.
A special bonus on the Blue Skies Calling CD is the inclusion of a CD-ROM featuring a one-hour guitar lesson given to Wells by Danny Gatton. "I played a 1955 Les Paul of Danny's for over 20 years," says Boy Wells. "Danny called me before he died and asked me to put a vocal tape together for his label at the time. He needed a singer after his singer, Billy Windsor, had passed. He remained a friend, a good one all those years. This lesson was in the late '70s; it's me and Danny in the living room of his house on Holly Lane in Indian Head, Maryland. It's killer stuff."
As a reviewer I hear an awful lot of music from artists I haven’t had the good fortune to have heard before, so are very good, others are passable professionals that can give you a good part of an hours entertainment. This album is the first in awhile where I was just shocked by the talent on display. Pick this album up, that’s all I can tell you. Get it now the Blue Skies Calling you.
Copyright © 2011 Robert Carraher All Rights Reserved