firewood and the blues

Lew Jetton, little Mike And Kathryn Hettel.


Well, It’s been since last August that I posted anything here. That being said, September was an epic month that I got everything done that needed doing.

1: got my youngest daughter, Sarah, married off to a nice guy with a cool family in a great setting.

2: got all the firewood for the season delivered, stacked and tarped.

3: listened to a lot of very cool blues music.

First, let’s start off with what I see as the most important. My lovely daughter Sarah married William Wells the sixth in a very fun ceremony with an outstanding reception that lasted into the night, all at the Chinook Winds casino/resort. Great times for all involved. The rooms all looked out over the Pacific Ocean with back door access to a sidewalk, lawn, beach grass berm and the beach. What a view, what a great setting.

This has been in the works for over a year, so it was an excellent ending to what was a challenging, planned event. Kudos to all involved.

Second on my list was the firewood. After the trip to Veneta, loading the firewood, then the trip home, it was time to unload, stack and cover. This was my job. At the beginning, I had some help with the unloading and stacking from my very generous ex-wife, but the rest was up to me.

I started with a new release from Little Mike. I have followed Little Mike since he was on Blind Pig Records with his original band The Tornadoes. They had been together for decades and have backed up some of the Who’s Who of the blues world. Most currently, they backed up Pinetop Perkins And Jimmy Rogers on a re-release of “Genuine Blues Legends”.

Little Mike has been around for a long time. He played with the Muddy Waters band before Pinetop joined the Tornadoes and the new band was formed.  It is nice to note that Little Mike took his guitarist Troy Nuhumko and drummer Cam Cobb with him on the  adventure with the new label, Elrob Records. This was the first release that I played as I donned my red and white dew rag and leather gloves to attack my firewood. Twelve very fun tunes that made the work fly by.

Next up was a cool release by Lew Jetton and 61 South. The release is lots of fun with several upbeat contemporary blues tunes and, I might add, some very nice ballads about rain and the feeling it brings out. I liked it a lot and have listened to the entire release several times. I later learned that Lew Jetton is a local weather guy in Southern California. I always thought that being a meteorologist in southern California would be a piece of cake. Then I thought of how hard it would be to say sunny and warm every day and keep it interesting. I suddenly don’t know how they do it!

The last release that saw my firewood dwindle to the last few pieces in the back of the truck is the newest by NW award winner Kathryn Hettel. It is titled “Cookin’ In The Kitchen With Dinah. A Tribute to Dinah Washington “. First, I have always loved the music of Dinah Washington. When the Blues Palace was on the air, I would frequently add a Dinah Washington tune to add a little class to the set. One of my favorites is “Blow Top Blues”, It helped explain that crazy girlfriend from the seventies. This release was three years in the making and features great musicians from the Seattle/Snohomish areas in Washington including Kevin Sutton on guitars, (unbelievable slide on Gamblers Blues), Joe Doria on an incredible B3, Sandy Carter on pedel steel, and a host of others brought together on Charles Hiestand charts inspired from the original recordings.  This is a release to own if you love Dinah as much as I do.  Hettel has the voice and sassiness that really brings the songs alive. Critical Sun Records has a bonified hit on their hands.

The wood is unloaded, stacked and blue tarped. I have already needed a few armloads to warm the abode as we are starting to get some kind of cool nights. I guess that’s to be expected in October here in the Pacific NW.

A reader of this blog asked me why I don’t have any negative reviews. The answer is simple. If I do not like a release, I don’t write about it. Plain and simple, I follow the Thumper Principle here. And I quote… If you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all.

Makes perfect sense to me.





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