Scott Albert Johnson’s new record “Going Somewhere” literally starts with a bang–a big drum groove–that is soon capped with feverish amped harmonica whose lines pay homage to the blues tradition without ever directly invoking it. Throughout this record, on every track of which Johnson sings lead, plays harmonica, and produced or co-produced–he also wrote or co-wrote every track except for covers of Peter Gabriel’s “I Don’t Remember” and Brett Winston’s “Haunt My Dreams”–the songs are memorable, the singing intense, and the harmonica new and powerful, often in surprising ways. It’s a great record if you’re into rock n’ roll; in fact it’s the most daring rock harmonica record since the early 1990s, when Blues Traveler came along to shake everybody up with a completely different take on the instrument.
Tag: Scott Albert Johnson
In the last couple of months, I have been privileged to acquire a huge stack of harmonica records from some of the best players in the world. Mike Stevens, the mind-boggling Canadian virtuoso, dropped a stack of 5 CDs on me that include styles ranging from bluegrass to rock to African. (Yes, I know there’s more than one style of African music, but I’m not knowledgeable enough about all those styles to name them accurately.) Peter Ruth sent me a couple of CDs; Scott Albert Johnson sent me his latest, which is truly a new, compelling take on rock harmonica. And acoustic harp monster Grant Dermody is about to drop his latest on me. Sheesh. Too many great records, not enough time to review them all at once.
So stay tuned for a batch of reviews coming soon to this site, starting with Scott Albert Johnson’s. By the way, if you like rock music and harmonica, just go out and buy Scott’s record right now. I’ve listened to it about 4 or 5 times straight through, and it’s one of the most original takes on rock harmonica that I’ve heard in years. My formal review will be more detailed than that, but that’s the advice.