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Jeff Healey Adventures In Jazzland Review

Album. Released 2007.  

BBC Review

Fans of Healy’s more hard-edged guitar work should give this a whirl to sample the...

Tim Cunningham 2007

Breezing along like a lazy summer afternoon, Adventures in Jazzland takes you on a nostalgic trip back in time to the Roaring 20s and Swinging 30s when everything jazz was hip and the height of sophistication.

It’s hard to picture the Jeff Healey that most would be familiar with at his prime in the genre of traditional jazz but this, he states, is his true love and he now devotes his time to exploring the music from this classic era. Jeff originally stormed onto the music scene back in the late 80s as a true blues/rock man with his sensational debut album See The Light and a stint in the movies as the blind guitarist in Road House, staring Patrick Swayze. The Jeff Healey Band went on to release a number of rocking albums and his virtuosity on the guitar is made all the more amazing by the fact that he lost the use of his eyes at a very early age and plays in a unique style with his guitar lying on his lap.

Overall this album is a delight to listen to with tasty embellishment from a select bunch of seasoned jazzers who are able to breathe new life into some great old tunes. Healy is not content to simply lay down sweet jazz lines on his axe though, and displays his multi-instrumentalist abilities by blowing some tasty trumpet and valve trombone as well. He even delivers great performances vocally to add a further feather to his cap. “Bugle Call Rag” and “Poor Butterfly” highlight Healey’s prowess on horns and tracks like “Indiana”, “Emaline”, “Someday Sweetheart” and “You’re Driving Me Crazy” all add to the vintage vibe.

This is not just an album for the jazz purists though and fans of Healy’s more hard-edged guitar work should give this a whirl to sample the depth and diversity of a rare and exceptional talent.

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