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Hurricane Ruth: The Power Of The Blues ... Feels Like A Hurricane

 A l b u m   D e t a i l s

Label: Hurrican Ruth Publishing
Released: 2012.02.13
Category: Blues
Producer(s): Andon T. Davis
Media type: CD
Web address: www.hurricaneruth.com
Appears with:
Purchase date: 2014
Price in €: 1,00

 S o n g s ,   T r a c k s

[1] Roll Little Sister (LaMaster/Davis/Engel/Lumsden) - 3:34
[2] I'm Gonna Get Evil (LaMaster/Davis/Engel/Lumsden) - 5:35
[3] The Power of the Blues...Feels Like a Hurricane (Diana Lumsden) - 4:04
[4] Let Me Change Your Mind (LaMaster/Davis/Engel/Lumsden) - 6:14
[5] Mississippi Queen (Corky Laing / Felix Pappalardi / Leslie West) - 3:22
[6] No Worries (LaMaster/Davis/Engel/Lumsden) - 4:03
[7] I Want To Take You Higher (Sylvester "Sly Stone" Stewart) - 4:47
[8] The Lesson (LaMaster/Davis/Engel/Lumsden) - 5:06

 A r t i s t s ,   P e r s o n n e l

Hurricane Ruth LaMaster - Vocals
Gary Davis - Bass Guitar, Vocal Harmony
Jim Engel - Drums, Vocal Harmony
David Lumsden - Lead Guitar

Andon T. Davis - Producer, Slide Guitar

Michael Krayniak - Engineer, Mixing
Steve Stokes - Engineer
Blaise Barton - Mastering
Cindy Huffman - Artwork
Julie Huffman - Artwork

 C o m m e n t s ,   N o t e s

Recorded between November 26, 2011 & November 27, 2011 at Strobe Recording; mixed at Rax Tax; mastered at Joyride Recordings.

Hurricane Ruth created their own brand of blues which they call power blues. It has been described as raw, emotional, and dynamic. The "power" seeps into everything they do, from their original music to their live shows. The epitome of power blues is Hurricane Ruth herself. Ruth is a captivating performer, who will grab your attention from note one and never let you go! Willie Dixon once told Ruth "she was the only hurricane he could appreciate".

Hurricane Ruth LaMaster started performing professionally in 1979, and found instant success. She acquired the name Hurricane Ruth from the fact that no one believed that such a large sound could come out of such a small woman! Ruth has performed with Maynard Ferguson and his orchestra, Adrian Belew, and Louis Belson. Ruth has opened for John Lee Hooker, B.B. King, Willie Dixon, Taj Mahal, Ramsey Lewis Trio, Sam & Dave, and Fenton Robinson. Ruth is joined by David Lumsden (lead guitar), Gary Davis (bass guitar), and Jim Engel (drums). Hurricane Ruth is a "power"ful blues experience that you won't soon forget!


Hurricane Ruth blows in as a force 5 hurricane with her power blues and support by a trio of musicians who are ready to keep the hurricane moving. Hurricane Ruth is Ruth LaMaster and she is joined by David Lumsden on guitar, Gary Davis on bass and Jim Engel on drums. Ruth provides the powerful vocals that match up with the band's big rock and blues sound. Recorded mostly live in the studio in the Windy City, the band is filled with energy and is ably led by the dynamic LaMaster.

The CD begins with "Roll Little Sister", a rocker built on the Stones "Dance Little Sister" theme. After the opener I felt this could be an 80's hair band led by a blues woman. It's a jumping tune we've heard in other places but it's a lot of fun and the delivery is big and bold. No pun intended, but LaMaster is apparently a master of this stuff. A stinging slow rocking blues follows; "I'm Gonna Get Evil" has a great big, stinging guitar solo and Hurricane Ruth testifying as to the bad things she is going to do to her man.

"The Power of the Blues...Feels Like a Hurricane" begins with the big guitar intro and Ruth then gets into it with the guitar, she trading her vocals licks off with Lumsden's axe. More big 80's rocking guitar solos abound here once again. Slow blues is up again next with "Let Me Change Your Mind" and Ruth is more than up to the task. She gets down and dirty, really breathy and lustful- well done. But then we get "Mississippi Queen" and it sounds like just another cover band who can't hold a flame to the original. I was hoping Ruth would give it a new and different spin, but it's not much of a change up. "No Worries" returns the set list to the blues and Hurricane Ruth is again in her element. Dirty guitar licks, a nice beat and her gritty vocals meld well together here.

Next up is Sly Stones' "I Want To Take You Higher". I love the minute-plus long guitar intro and later solos that are excellent and Ruth handles the vocals a lot better than the Mountain song; she comes off as a lot more real here than in the other cover. "Shouting" through late 70's and 80's rock song is in her wheelhouse. Lastly we have "The Lesson" which is an in-your-face sort of slow blues with a poignant guitar lead. I like this track a lot, too. Great power guitar and gutsy vocals.

It's got some 80's rock sound to some of it and the "Mississippi Queen" cover seems a little misplaced, but the real criticism I have is that we only get 8 songs to listen to here. I know that was all albums had in the old days, but it seems to be done just as the band is getting started. But it's powerful and has a lot of energy. Ruth's vocals are really good and so is Lumsden on lead guitar. Hard rocking blues fans will find some great tidbits to enjoy here.

Steve Jones
Copyright - Blues Blast Magazine 2010

Ihren Namen trägt Hurricane Ruth nicht zu Unrecht: Mit der Urgewalt eines Wirbelsturms tobt sie auf ihrem Debütalbum durch die Bluessongs. Das Quartett aus Springfield nennt ihren Musikstil Power Blues. Sängerin „Hurricane“ Ruth LaMasters, Gary Davis (bg, voc), Jim Engel (dr, voc) und Gitarrist David Lumsden spielen auf „The Power of the Blues“ mit einer Intensität, die dieser Bezeichnung aller Ehre macht. Ruths Gesang merkt man ihre Verehrung für Powerfrauen wie Koko Taylor, Aretha Frankling oder auch Tina Turner an: Ob es um rockende Nummern wie den Operner „Roll Little Sister“, Mid-Tempo-Balladen wie den Titelsong oder beim Slowblues „Let Me Change Your Mind“ geht: Nirgendwo lässt die Spannung nach, mit der sie die Lieder aus den Boxen prallen lässt. In dem Zusammenhang kann man Willie Dixon verstehen, der vor Jahren die Sängerin mal als den einzigen Hurrikan bezeichnete, den er begrüßen würde. Und ihre Band - vor allem der vorzüglich aufgelegte Lumsden mit seiner schreienden Gitarre unterstützen sie dabei. Heraus kommt ein Album mit acht Titeln, dass Hurricane Ruth einen Platz in der Liste der bemerkenswertesten Bluesladies des Jahres sichern sollte.

Dixie Peach - 09 Oktober 2012
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