Omar Kent Dykes and Jimmie Vaughan: Jimmy Reed Highway

By: Sarah Moore

On The Jimmy Reed Highway (Ruf) is a tribute to the late blues musician who some say is as important to the Southern blues tradition as Robert Johnson. The Rolling Stones and many other '60s British blues acts cite the man as a major influence on their music. Modern day bluesman, Omar Kent Dykes performs Reed classics including "Big Boss Man" (famously covered by The Dead) and "Bright Lights Big City," both songs on the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame's 500 Songs that Shaped Rock and Roll list. Ex-Fabulous Thunderbird and brother to Stevie, Jimmie Vaughan plays guitar and sits shotgun on this road trip to bluestown.

Dykes' grizzly vocals and Vaughan's solid electric blues are rounded out by esteemed guest musicians Delbert McClinton, James Cotton, Lou Ann Barton and Gary Clark Junior. The Texas blues sound is achieved with loads of fluid harmonica and a neck nodding electric rhythm. The disc was created in a freewheeling, fun way, and that feeling comes through the speakers. This is not to say the playing is sloppy or the production choppy. Rather, the finesse Reed's playing style and compositional skill comes across in their relaxed attitude. The disc includes Reed originals as well as two tracks by Dykes and Steve Callif honoring the influential bluesman.

JamBase | Down South
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[Published on: 1/17/08]

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IPowrie Fri 1/18/2008 06:27AM
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This sounds sweet. Sounds like a record I need to go out and get. Long live the blues.



rikigo starstarstarstarstar Sun 9/28/2008 01:37AM
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I just wanted to say that I've been re-discovering Jimmie Vaughan and listened to this album for the first time this afternoon at sunset (as it's Spring in Sydney) ...with the doors wide open and the volume cranked up and jamming along with Telecaster in hand was perfect!

Thanks Omar, Jimmie, Kim, Delbert, James, Lou Ann, Gary & the team's a treasure. Thanks for the liner notes as they do help those without any guide-posts to 'feel' your sentiments. Kindest, ;-R