This is the album to start with on Wet Willie, and their real best-of, a surging, forceful concert recording of white Southern soul and blues-rock at its best. The band holds its own alongside outfits like the Allman Brothers -- no, this isn't the kind of history-making set that At Fillmore East by the latter band constituted, but it is a great show presenting this group and its members at their very best.
The playing is hard and muscular, the singing rich and expressive, and they have serious fun with numbers like "Red Hot Chicken" (stretched to ten minutes) and do a nice, laidback "Macon Hambone Blues," surrounded by crunchy renditions of pieces like "Airport." What's more, they switch effortlessly from a lean, guitar-centered blues-rock to a much funkier, sax-driven sound -- maybe it was that diversity that prevented Wet Willie from really breaking big outside of the Southeast. The vibes they were picking up from the audience on New Year's Eve at the Warehouse in New Orleans make this a compelling concert document.
by Bruce Eder
1. That's Allright (Arthur Crudup) - 7:03
2. She Caught The Katy (And Left Me A Mule To Ride)t (Taj Mahal, Yank Rachael) - 3:21
3. No Good Woman Bluest (Milton Larkin, Sr.) - 3:39
4. Red Hot Chicken (John Anthony, Jack Hall, Jim Hall, Ricky Hirsch, Lewis Ross, Wick Larsen) - 10:17
5. Airportt (John Anthony) - 3:32
6. I'd Rather Be Blindt (Leon Russell) - 3:49
7. Macon Hambone Blues (John Anthony, Jack Hall, Jim Hall, Ricky Hirsch, Lewis Ross) - 9:47
8. Shout Bamalamat (Otis Redding) - 4:06
*Jimmy Hall - Harmonica, Percussion, Alto Saxophone, Vocals
*Rick Hirsch - Lead Guitar, Vocals
*John Anthony - Keyboards, Percussion, Vocals
*Lewis Ross - Drums, Percussion
*Jack Hall - Banjo, Bass, Composer, Vocals
*Jai Johanny Johanson - Congas
1974 Wet Willie - Keep On Smilin'