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Take the Gamble

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Album Review

This good-natured and spirited set by blues guitarist/singer Dave Gross mostly focuses on the jump blues style of the 1940s, even though the majority of the selections are his originals. Gross has a versatile style that ranges from Charlie Christian to early rock & roll, and his group sometimes ventures into 1960s R&B/soul ballads, though usually not for long. There are some fine solos along the way from saxophonist Doug James, cornetist Al Basile, and Dennis Gruenling on harmonica. The personnel changes from track to track, with Duke Robillard guesting on guitar during three numbers. The swinging instrumental "Swingin' on All Six" and a romping "After You've Gone" are high points, although every selection is enjoyable and Gross' good-humored vocals are fun. Take the Gamble will appeal to several large and overlapping audiences; recommended.

Take the Gamble, Dave Gross
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