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Rick Derringer: Blues Deluxe

Veteran rocker Rick Derringer dips deep into a blues bag on Blues Deluxe (Shrapnel BB 20392; ). A one-time member of the ’60s pop band The McCoys (you remember “Hang On Sloopy,” don’t you?), Derringer gained guitar hero status in the ’70s with Johnny Winter And, a kind of heavy metal blues band for its time. He continued producing and playing rock music through the ’80s and ’90s and easily makes the transition into the blues-rock idiom with spirited bent-string renditions of “Let the Good Times Roll,” Howlin’ Wolf’s “Killing Floor,” Jimmy Reed’s “Bright Lights, Big City,” Sonny Boy Williamson’s “Checking Up On My Baby,” Freddie King’s instrumental classic “Hideaway” and Big Bill Broonzy’s “Key to the Highway.” He even revives Johnny Winter and classics like “Still Alive And Well” and “Funky Music,” rendered here with a bluesy edge. But of course, that great ’70s band always had a lot of blue notes going on.

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