Blues Bits

Blues Boy Music is pleased to present not only established masters, but also the latest generation of blues players, such as the fine guitarist Kimberly "KC" Allison. Originally from Kansas City, but now based in California, Allison is a well-grounded player who has a formal degree in jazz guitar from The University of Southern California. Allison plays both jazz and blues, and sometimes performs as half of A -n- E Jazz Duo with acoustic bassist Gerry Easley. She was a 1998 nominee for an L.A. Music Award as "outstanding guitarist. " What brought Allison to the attention of the BluesBoy is a very nice CD credited to Kimberly Allison and Friends and entitled "Old, New, Borrowed and Blues." The album consists of five instrumental and five vocal numbers, mostly originals by either Allison or her songwriting partner Charles Thomas. "O, N, B & B" has a full but uncluttered sound, with judicious use of keys, horns and/or harp at various points in the proceedings. Allison offers up tasty leads that are either clean and precise, or gritty and fat, as the occasion demands. She concentrates all her energies on her playing, and leaves the vocal chores to one or another of her friends. The Blues Boy is now playing four of the album's tracks in The Shack of Blues, including a couple of down and dirty blues, one associated with Z.Z. Hill called "Open House At My House," featuring vocals by Mr. Blues, and an original, "No Woman, No Dog, No Best Friend Blues," with Morris Beeks (and Baxter The Wonder Hound) on vox; another Beeks vocal track, the horn driven double-entendre swinger "I Want To Park My Hot Rod;" and the instrumental "Portland Boogie." There are other noteworthy cuts, as well. I'm particularly partial to the instrumentals, such as the off-kilter "Four Down Jump," which is spiced by James Murphy's harp; "I 35 South," which takes you straight to the heart of Texas for some SRV-style blues; and the fusion-y "Turn Up The A.C." with its big old funky baritone sax courtesy of Jennifer Hall. The covers of songs by Junior Parker ("Next Time You See Me") and Jimmy McCracklin("Just Got To Know") are p.d. smart, too, if you ask me. Allison's website address is
Picks for the past year:
New Artists
1. Taylor & Martinez - "Taylor & Martinez" (Hi)
2. Mary Taylor - "Victim Of Love" (JPS)
3. Big Gilson - "Cab Driver Blues" (Top Cat)
4. North Mississsippi All Stars - "Shake Hands With Shorty" (Tone-Cool)
5. Kimberly Allison - "Old, New, Borrowed And Blues" (Starliner)
-Michael Dixon *Blues Bits* News from the *Blues Boy Music* Front
WRBC Director of Blues Music
Lewiston, ME