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Change In the Weather

Eric Lindell

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Album Review

Although he was not born in Louisiana, Eric Lindell follows Marc Broussard's career path as a young and soulful guitar-slinging upstart with his heart in the R&B of the '60s and his soul in New Orleans. This pastiche of an album released in 2006 collects and remasters the audio for music that has been previously available on tiny, poorly distributed local imprints. Despite its stitched-together origins, the disc holds together remarkably well as a cohesive statement, primarily due to Lindell's low-key yet impressive talents as singer, songwriter, and bandleader. Latin influences such as the percussion (courtesy of War's Harold Brown) and trumpet on "Sunny Daze," along with a reggae lilt on "It Won't Be Long," "Casanova," and "Two Bit Town," bring Caribbean sunshine to the sound. The opening "Give It Time" recalls Traffic in its "Dear Mr. Fantasy" chords, but the tune — like many on his Alligator Records debut — snakes around a soulful, gospel-styled, slow-burning vibe that is best described as rootsy. Lindell is loose and seems like he's having a ball throughout. That enthusiasm bleeds into the album's upbeat approach, especially on such frisky, party-ready tunes as "Feel Like I Do." He brings the horns and female backing vocals for an Otis Redding-inspired "All Alone," one of the many examples where Lindell's relaxed yet convincing vocals carry the song. Like much R&B, there aren't many guitar solos and only the sax takes the lead on most instrumental breaks. But the album connects with hummable songs less concerned with individual talents than with the musicians' contribution to the overall groove. As laid-back and casually inviting as a crisp spring day, Lindell kicks off his career for this blues imprint with an impressive and frothy release that shows he's just starting to reveal the full extent of his talent.

Biography

Born: 1969 in San Mateo, CA

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '90s, '00s, '10s

Born in 1969 in San Mateo, California, blues guitarist Eric Lindell spent much of his youth in nearby Santa Rosa and Forestville. Although he worked as a baker by day, Lindell turned his focus to music in the evenings, honing his chops as a competent vocalist and guitarist by playing in bars around Sonoma County. He produced his debut album, Bring It Back, in 1996, and in 1999 he won the John Lennon Songwriting Competition with his original piece "Kelly Ann." That same year, Lindell decided to move...
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Change In the Weather, Eric Lindell
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