Tuned In To Music

Reflections from a lifetime

Review: Stevie Ray Vaughan & Friends, Solos, Sessions & Encores

As most everyone knows, Stevie Ray Vaughan is one of the truly great guitar players of the past 50 years.  Since he was killed in a helicopter crash in 1990 his back catalog has been picked over srvobsessively to market what one would have thought was every last scrap of unissued material in the vaults.  Apparently not.  “Solos, Session & Encores” presents Vaughan in the context of either playing with or supporting other musicians and it’s worth the price of the CD not only because so much of it is so good, but because there is a surprising amount of excellent previously unreleased material here.

Six of the CDs fourteen tracks are previously unreleased and five of those six are live tracks.  They include a wonderful version of “Oreo Cookie Blues” with Lonnie Mack recorded live on New Year’s Eve at the Fox Theatre in Atlanta, a storming “Albert’s Shuffle” with Albert Collins recorded at the 1988 New Orleans Jazz Fest, and an outstanding version of “Change It” with Stevie’s brother Jimmy Vaughan taken from a 1985 Saturday Night Live performance.  If there was this much good stuff in the vaults it gives us hope that there may be more.  Maybe much more.  It’s hard to imagine there ever being too much Stevie Ray Vaughan.  When he was on, he could routinely electrify an audience both in person and on recording in ways that very few others can on even their best nights. 

Among the previously released material is a blistering live recording of “Goin’ Down” with Jeff Beck and an unexpected version of “Pipeline” with surf guitar king Dick Dale.  Unfortunately Vaughan and Dale didn’t record it together as Vaughan added his guitar to a track that Dale had already laid down.  The disc ends with David Bowie’s “Let’s Dance” which fits in with the concept of the album but sounds sterile and mannered after the raw excitement of many of the other tracks on the disc.

“Solos, Sessions & Encores” is both a surprising and welcome addition to Stevie Ray Vaughan’s body of work on CD.  Surprising because it has so much first rate previously unreleased material, welcome because it’s Stevie Ray Vaughan and Stevie Ray will light you up.


12/05/2007 - Posted by | CD reviews, music, music reviews


  1. very interesting, but I don’t agree with you

    Comment by Idetrorce | 12/15/2007 | Reply

  2. A very worthwhile investment of 20 bucks and great to hear SRV in a different way. Whatever he does will always be a pleasure to hear.

    Comment by Saxmandodge | 03/15/2008 | Reply

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: