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Mike Morgan and the Crawl with Lee McBee: I Like the Way You Work It!

Dallas-based roadhouse rockers Mike Morgan & The Crawl are greatly aided by the rough-hewn vocal charms of Lee McBee on I Like the Way You Work It! (Black Top 1154; 54:47). A gutsy guitarist who has led The Crawl since 1986, Morgan has made some keen choices for frontmen over the years, notably charter member Darrell Nulisch. In the Kansas City-born McBee, he has found a classic double threat-soul-stirring vocalist who also plays some suitably raunchy blues harp. They make a formidable team on raw boogies like “One of a Kind,” “Somebody Help Me” and the title track and on jump blues shuffles like “The Hammer” and “See Me Runnin’.” Morgan stretches out in a jazzy T-Bone Walker-ish vein on the instrumental “Flyin’ High” and on the mellow organ trio blues “Martinis For Two.” And he goes country alongside second guitarist Shawn Pittman on the Merle Travis-flavored instrumental “Chasin’ Casey.” The phenomenally soulful McBee hits his emotional peaks on the slow blues “I Wanna Know” and the tough shuffle “All My Life.” This here is one of the great working roadhouse blues bands out there right now.

Originally Published