Already receiving many positive reviews "Keep It Hot" is becoming a popular cd. Frank Thompson, the guitarist for The Hollywood Combo, (whose cd can also be found on cdbaby) said, "the first song is killer!" Mike Hayward wrote and played guitar on track #1, with the song dedicated to the memory of Chicago great Magic Sam. Another guitarist said all the gals in his house listen to "Everybody Calls Me Sweetheart". He said, "they love the voice".
Mike Hayward also does a fine job singing and playing guitar with T-Bone Walker's classic "The Hustle (Is On). Lots of nice guitar on this cut and throughout the entire cd by blues veteran Mike Hayward who loaned his services from The Red Light Revue Band out of Portland, Maine.
"Memphis" is an instrumental that the drummer Pepper learned somewhere along way with the years of doing club gigs. Tenor sax man Matt Kennedy does a wonderful job with this tune. Making it a bit of his own after just hearing Pepper hum a few bars to him in the studio. "Memphis" has that old time sway feel to it. It is quickly becoming a dance favorite. Couples are getting up on the dance floor almost as immediately as the tune starts. A sure sign of a hit song. Matt shines on a number of cuts especially his soulful solo on the Willie Dixon's tune, "My Babe".
Tom O'Connell plays harp on each and every cut. He was invited for the first night of the recording session, but was having such a good time he never left. Tom enjoyed the 1950's room sound that can be duplicated at Pip Walter's Track Farm Studio in Cape Elizabeth, Maine. That is one reason why Tom chose to record the traditional tune "Shake Yo Boogie" for this cd. Tom's collection of vintage amps fit right in nicely with the "unslick" feeling wanted by Executive Producer Reliquiae Paprika. Tom laid it down on track 9 and 10 as well. Give them a listen.
Pepper brought in a ringer Pete Masterton to do the bass work on the cd. Pete provided the foundation to make the whole project happen. His opening notes on tract 2 and 7 set just the right tempo and tone. That is Pete singing on tract 9 handing the bass guitar over to Pip Walter.
As Pepper often says that a band starts with a piano player, so it is no wonder Pepper brought in two of his favorite guys. Mark Gunter was a member of The Sensations for years. Each member of the band has helped carry his Hammond B-3 in and out of many a club. Playing the studio keyboard Mark is featured on "South American Maracas". Something New Orleans about that song. It was once said that after all, New Orleans is the northern most Southern American city! Joe Hanley does Pepper's favorite solo on the entire album with his work on "My Babe". Joe was in the session just one night, and just found his place on each tune. A couple of real pros here.
So go ahead and buy The Sensations "Keep It Hot". It will make a fine addition to your cd/record collection. And buy it if you are in a band. Lots of good tunes here to learn and play on your own club gigs.
Check out the artist's website:
1. Magahett's Mood
2. Jook Joint Woman
3. You Call Everybody Sweetheart
4. Shake Yo' Boogie
5. South American Maracas
6. Kiss Me Baby
7. The Hustle (Is On)
9. Rainin' In My Heart
10. Tryin' To Get To You
11. My Babe