"BOSS OF THE BOOGIE"
Blues From The Vault- BP014
Review from Leicester Bangs, Aug.,2011 http://www.leicesterbangs.co.uk/aug11-9.html
Rob Rio - Blues From The Vault (BOSS Productions) Boogie-woogie piano-powered rock ‘n’ roll has spent a number of years at the peripheries of popular music since its late ‘50s heyday. In the UK, thanks mainly to Jools Holland, his Later show, and his willingness to put his Big Band on the road, there’s been something of a comeback, and we can only hope that the man some call the "Boss of the Boogie", Rob Rio, get’s his fair share of trickledown recognition and sales.
Having plied his trade with rock and blues giants like Mick Jagger, Canned Heat, Muddy Waters and Charles Brown, Rio understands the importance of a polished performance, but without sacrificing excitement and spontaneity. “Blues From The Vault” is a wonderful collection of recordings. Urgent, thrilling, bundles of fun with a timeless quality – these songs could have been cut any time in the last 50-odd years – but the listener in equally aware that they’re hearing a supremely talented musician at the top of his game.
There are copious highlights, from the ‘educational’ “Down The Road A Piece” to the rolling version of Sidney Bechet’s “Preachin’ Blues” and Tampa Red’s “It Hurts Me Too”, with Rio’s resonant voice bringing out the hurt to good effect. Considering “Blues From The Vault” is a collection of previously unreleased material recorded between 1986-1990, I think his 1992 collection “Bankin’ On The Boogie” has just made its way to the top of my ‘wants’ list.
BOSS Productions, P.O. BOX 8302, CALABASAS, CA 91372 (818)999-2437