Raoul and the Big Time – Hollywood Blvd

Written by Joe Taylor

July 12, 2016

If you dig the 50’s swing sound mixed with it some Rock and Roll and Jazz, you will truly dig this recording. Raoul put together a solid package of 12 unique sounds that big you back to a time of freedom, exploration, and a youthful energy that runs through a labyrinth of experiences that you need to go through to get to that next level of living.

“Nothin’ going to take me down”, starts off strong with a confident swagger that challenges the world, to come and get me. That swagger takes us down to “Hollywood Blvd”, where we get to relax by a poolside and sip on cold lemonade on a scorching day.

“Someday”, is a great Bobby Blue Bland tune that comes off very slick and polished. Then you get to become a “High Roller”, with your gold tooth flashing and your pencil thin moustache, cheesing out over a craps table, feeling grittier than cat’s tongue on sun burnt skin. You then pop an “Amphetamine” and start jumping all over a juke joint with your swing baby. Rock On!

Unhappily, “Get out of my life woman”, is an angry cry to find your freedom and single life again, while you push your woman as far as way as possible. The instrumental, “Left Coast Fred”, seems to find happiness again with another great swing feel to it.

The 1967 classic, “Why am I treated so bad”, originally done by The Staple Sisters, is redone with Rauol. He brings back the current lineup of the Staple Sisters to resurrect this nearly 50 year old gem.

If you have ever been in an empty dark pub at about 4am, with one or two shot too many, and are listening to a weary band, most likely you are now listening to “Tired”. For anyone out there who has pulled all nighters at a pub, this is a very familiar song. Then, somehow you wake up without a hangover and you feel that ray of sunshine falling on your heart, you realize you are love struck with a beautiful woman. She can walk down the street with a swagger that can get most men hollering and whistling. The only problem is that she is, “Spoken for”.

The last instrumental is “Curtis Charm”. He is the most romantic barfly you can only meet through a haze of very thick beer goggles. Rauol doesn’t leave you there; he lets you walk through the final song, “In the shadow of the pine”. It is a very sweet Bluegrass tune that has you swaying in the forest with a very close friend, as you watch the sun slowly setting on this very colourful and soulful CD.

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