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Grapefruit Moon
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Performer Notes
  • Tributee: Tom Waits.
  • Recording information: Hoffman Studios, CA.
  • Although Southside Johnny (born John Lyon) is most readily associated with fellow New Jersey native Bruce Springsteen, GRAPEFRUIT MOON finds the rock veteran taking on the songs of the Boss's more eccentric kindred spirit--Tom Waits. With his charmingly rough-hewn voice, Southside Johnny is a natural for the Waits canon, though he puts his own bluesy stamp on every tune. Highlights of the set, which at times reaches back to Waits's 1970s lounge-lizard material, include a jazz-tinged, piano-led version of the melancholy "Yesterday Is Here" and a spare, sauntering take on "Walk Away," a track that also features Waits himself on vocals.
Professional Reviews
Down Beat (p.96) - 3.5 stars out of 5 -- "LaBamba employs a rainbow of timbres from the big band palette and relies on classic orchestration devices that make this towering excursion sound like the soundtrack to a Hollywood spy thriller..."

JazzTimes (p.102) - "[S]urely most captivating is a hell-invades-heaven, gravel-pit pairing of Johnny and Waits on 'Walk Away,' with Waits' trademark scratch and howl now sounding like a twisted wire hanger left to rust in a hailstorm."

Mojo (Publisher) (p.119) - 4 stars out of 5 -- "Johnny Lyons' dream of setting Waits and Kathleen Brenna's often cinematic songs to an exciting, big-band backdrop has been realised in full."
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