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So Many Roads
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Performer Notes
  • SO MANY ROADS: LIVE IN CONCERT contains 3 previously unreleased bonus tracks.
  • Personnel: Otis Rush (vocals, guitar); Jimmy Johnson (guitar); Sylvester Boines (bass); Tyrone Centuray (drums).
  • Recorded live at Hibiya Park, Tokyo, Japan on July 20 & 29, 1975. Includes liner notes by Steve Tomashefsky.
  • Personnel: Otis Rush (vocals, guitar); Jimmy Johnson (guitar); Tyrone Centuray (drums).
  • Liner Note Author: Steve Tomashefsky.
  • Recording information: Hibiya Park, Tokyo, Japan (07/20/1975/07/29/1975).
  • Photographer: Marc de Jonghe.
  • This album, recorded live in Japan in 1975, features legendary Chicago axe-slinger Otis Rush in top form. While the personnel, which includes drummer Tyrone Centuray, bassist Sylvester Boines, and rhythm guitarist Jimmy Johnson, takes a back-seat to Rush's playing and singing, there is a good deal of fascinating instrumental interplay, especially from Centuray and Boines. Still, there is little doubt that this is Rush's show. The southpaw's mastery of the fretboard is on full display as he tosses out tricks--fluid, vibrato-rich phrasing, crying and stinging high ends, sounds transformed with feedback and effects.
  • The set includes a number of fine covers, including Willie Dixon's "I Can't Quit You, Baby," B.B. King's "Gambler's Blues," and Kenny Burrell's slinky groover "Chitlins Con Carne" (which, in its heavily amplified, near-rock version here, is one of the record's highlights). Rush's passionate vocals and the notoriously intense building-and-falling architecture of his solos get ample breathing room on these cuts, and the inspiration he draws from his appreciative audience is clear. This set is especially recommended for guitarists, who will find a veritable treasure trove of licks to study throughout.
Professional Reviews
Down Beat (2/96, p.49) - 4.5 Stars - Very Good/Excellent - "...[Rush] wrings tense, trembling notes...as though his life were on the line....The vivid cry of his guitar lines and forceful chordal strokes find agreement in his smooth yet anguished singing everywhere on the program. In his feverish quest to express himself, Rush even pushes beyond the standard protocol of blues and embarks on jazzy solo flights..."

Musician (11/95, p.93) - "...Heard in a lean quartet format, backed by a strong band..., Rush is at his jazziest, twirling out clotted, unpredictable licks hither and yon. His straining, impassioned singing is in near-top form as well..."
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