The Sirens Records


SR5003: 8 Hands on 88 Keys    -- Chicago Blues Piano Masters


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CD:SR5003  

"It isn't often that four Chicago piano virtuosos convene for a marathon recording session, but this one must have been a riot, judging by the sheer fervor of the performances. Each artist sounds utterly unlike the rest, with Barrelhouse Chuck laying down relentless boogie rhythms, Detroit Junior accompanying his fat chords with moans and cries, Pinetop Perkins luxuriating in unbelievably slow and sultry tempos and Erwin Helfer ripping through blues, boogie, and jazz numbers at a breakneck pace. Together, these great Chicago originals play down-home music that's about as unvarnished as it gets."

Howard Reich, Chicago Tribune March 3, 2002

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Press / Music CD Reviews

"8 Hands on 88 Keys turns out to be one of the year's best sets of piano blues, thanks in no small part to the sense of camaraderie among the players. Perkins lets loose with some of his best vocals in ages on 'I Almost Lost My Mind,' with Helfer providing perfect, understated accompaniment on keys, while Junior offers an instrumental highlight on the countryish original 'Ella.' An extraordinarily warm recording in more ways than one."

Kenneth Bays Blues Revue August 2002
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"This set showcases the front line of Chicago's living blues pianists at the height of their current powers … it should provide a bracing rebuttal to curmudgeons who insist that 'authentic' Chicago blues are a thing of the past."

David Whiteis, Living Blues May 2002
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"It isn't often that four Chicago piano virtuosos convene for a marathon recording session, but this one must have been a riot, judging by the sheer fervor of the performances. Each artist sounds utterly unlike the rest, with Barrelhouse Chuck laying down relentless boogie rhythms, Detroit Junior accompanying his fat chords with moans and cries, Pinetop Perkins luxuriating in unbelievably slow and sultry tempos and Erwin Helfer ripping through blues, boogie, and jazz numbers at a breakneck pace. Together, these great Chicago originals play down-home music that's about as unvarnished as it gets."

Howard Reich, Chicago Tribune March 3, 2002
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"Every track on this album is a gem and serves to remind how this music can sound when played by those who were born with the music in their soul and in their hands. Highly recommended."

David Nathan, www.allaboutjazz.com
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