AND THE TRAFFIC
MAKE IT EASY
MAKE IT EASY–WHEN DID YOU STOP TRYIN–LET YOUR TEARS FALL BABY–GET BACK TO LOVIN–SATISFIED–WADE IN THE WATER–BUILT FOR COMFORT–WRONG SIDE OF LOVE–CHAD MO’ SHUFFLE–LOW DOWN DOG–HINDSIGHT–LOVE THE WORLD
Toots Lorraine and the Traffic are a cool breath of fresh air on the contemporary blues scene today. They show a deep passion for the preservation of classic West Coast jump blues and good ole Chicago blues. For their latest album, Toots and the Traffic channeled that vintage sound into “Make It Easy,” featuring a blend of covers and originals that all pay tribute to the ancestors of the blues.
Toots has that perfect blend of sugar-and-spice in her vocals that fits in well with this material. Check out the opening title cut, the jazzy “Make It Easy,” with big fat chromatic harp from Aki Kumar. Chad Dant gets in some fine guitar grooves over Toots’ vocals, as she tells a no-good lover to “Let Your Tears Fall, Baby.” She gets downright torchy and right to the heart of the matter on the slow-burn of ” let’s Get Back To Lovin, the only thing we do right!”
Toots does some hi-octane testifyin’ on another swingin’ band original, “Satisfied,” with guitar from Chris “Kid” Andersen. She plays a woman who realizes she made a mistake “the very second I let you go,” and is now on “The Wrong Side Of Love, lookin’ back at you.” This one is built around a sweet, stop-time, slow groove. She swears “I won’t be your Low Down Dog no more” over Aki’s chromatic, and closes the set with a universal call for peace, love, and understanding, the haunting “Love The World.”
Our favorite was easy. Aki’s harp intro gives way to Toots’ telling everybody that “I got everything a good man needs,” and is sho’ nuff “Built For Comfort, not for speed!”
It is always refreshing to have a band that knows the history of the blues, and it’s even better when you have a fine, fine singer such as Toots Lorraine and a backing band as talented as The Traffic to carry this bidness on. “Make It Easy” is an easy set to enjoy, for sure! Until next time…Sheryl and Don Crow.