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Train Keeps a Rolling (with Brian Auger)

Jeff Golub

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Album Review

That guitarist Jeff Golub was able to record Train Keeps a Rolling at all is something of a miracle. In 2011, the optic nerves in the guitarist's eyes mysteriously and inexplicably collapsed, leaving him blind and in need of a guard dog. In September of 2012, while trying to catch the subway in New York, Golub fell onto the tracks as a train was approaching. He was clipped and dragged for a distance, but amazingly, other than cuts and bruises, he was unhurt. This makes the occasion of his 12th studio offering a special one. To mark it, his longtime co-producer Bud Harner suggested that he collaborate with one of his personal heroes, British keyboard giant Brian Auger. They enlisted drummer Steve Ferrone from Auger's Oblivion Express and bassist Derek Frank, who had also worked with the keyboardist. Various tracks are augmented by guests, including a four-piece horn section, percussionist Luis Conte, and vocalists Christopher Cross, Ambrosia's David Pack, and Alex Ligertwood (former Oblivion Express and Santana frontman). The program opens with a bright, funky reading of Lalo Schifrin's "The Cat" that accents the intuitive interplay between the B-3 and Golub's guitar playing. There are three Auger compositions too, including a new reading of the slinky jazz-rock nugget "Happiness Is Just Around the Bend" with Ligertwood reprising his Oblivion Express vocal role. More outstanding are the punchy, horn-drenched funk of "Shepherds Bush Market," which Auger wrote specifically for the date, and the previously unissued "Isola Natale," with its jazzy Latin groove. Pop rears its head in a sophisticated read of Paul Carrack's "How Long," beautifully sung by Cross, and ramped up soul-jazz appears in an instrumental take on Curtis Mayfield's iconic "Pusherman," with a terrific horn chart and a monster B-3 solo. Golub shines throughout, but particularly on the ironically dubbed title track, which commences as a frenetic tropical salsa before giving way to steamy, Latin-fused jazz-rock. The only weak spots here are in the workmanlike version of the Police's "Walking on the Moon" and the Mose Allison-influenced read of Willie Dixon's "I Love the Life I Live"; both could have been left off without consequence. By and large, however, Train Keeps a Rolling is proof positive that you can't keep a great musician down; it is inspired, kinetic, and chock-full of fine playing and arranging.

Customer Reviews

Brilliant-Great Music

Wow just listened to all the preview tracks two amazing artists Jeff Golub's great guitar work and Brain Auger probably one of the best Hammond B3 players there has been. Look forward to getting the Album and hopefully they may do a show in Dallas.

Tony London

Train Keeps A Rolling

If you love classic guitar riffs and the B3 organ then this is the album for you. Jeff is in rare form and the collaboration with Brian Auger takes this to a whole new place. Just finished my first listen and loved The Cat, J & B, Isola Natale, and Pusherman. Can't wait to see the show in NYC.

KZ

Back to Soul Jazz

Album after album Jeff has the ability to put out fresh sounding music. As much as I love Jeff playing the "Blues", it's good to see him venturing back to "Soul Jazz" were he reinvents his sound with yet another great release. This album contains great tunes from songs with "Beat Jazz" flair to "Classic Soul". Brian Auger on the Hammond B3 or Fender Rhodes is a perfect partner for Jeff's new adventure. Guest vocalists and another dimension to this album and some tunes have a Steely Dan type of edge to them. A very solid performance by Jeff and Brian and a tour that I am really looking forward to.
Kevin B.

Biography

Born: April 15, 1955 in Akron, OH

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '90s, '00s

In the '90s, guitarist Jeff Golub's blend of jazz, R&B, and pop earned him a reputation for being one of the edgier, more tasteful players in the crossover jazz/NAC/smooth jazz field. Although some of Golub's recordings were played on smooth jazz stations extensively, he was quoted as saying that he refuses to play outright elevator music, and to be sure, Golub's solos gave the impression that he is essentially a soul-jazz improviser at heart. The Ohio native (whose influences included Wes Montgomery,...
Full Bio
Train Keeps a Rolling (with Brian Auger), Jeff Golub
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