Credited with influencing both Jimi Hendrix and Buddy Guy, Shorty has been electrifying audiences for five decades with his supercharged live shows and his incendiary recordings. Through the years, Shorty has performed with blues and R&B luminaries like Ray Charles, Sam Cooke, B.B. King, Guitar Slim and T-Bone Walker. Although he had recorded a handful of singles for a variety of labels, it wasn’t until the 1990s that the wider world opened to one of the blues’ most exciting performers. His albums since then all received critical acclaim, and his legendary live performances have kept him constantly in demand all over the world. His 2004 Alligator debut, Watch Your Back, became the best received, best selling album of his career. With his new CD, We The People, he’s prepared to continue what he’s started, taking his music, and his fans, to deeper places and even greater heights.
Guitar Shorty delivers a moving and soulful statement with We The People, featuring some of the most fire-coated fretwork he has ever laid down and the most thought-provoking songs he’s ever recorded. He’s playing with a passion and dedication almost unmatched in today’s music scene. Always a celebrated live performer and now a top-selling recording artist as well, Guitar Shorty will no doubt find that We The People will once again make him the people’s choice.
Produced by Wyzard and Brian Brinkerhoff, We The People finds Guitar Shorty singing and playing with ferocious urgency and a fierce righteousness. We The People burns with heavy rock and roll fire from start to finish, putting Shorty’s infectious energy and guitar pyrotechnics on full display. And more than ever before, his songs tell the story of the harsh realities of everyday life in terms both stark ("We The People"), pointed ("Cost Of Livin’") and poignant ("Down That Road Again"). What he began with Watch Your Back, Shorty accelerates with We The People, creating an album that is as memorable for its menacing guitar work and defiant vocals as it is for its incisive and wide-ranging stories.
"I've been to hell and back, I'm still looking good / I've found the fountain of youth, I've got the blues in my blood," sings Guitar Shorty on "Blues in My Blood"--one of the more autobiographical tracks, albeit one he didn't write, on his second Alligator album in three years. After working for decades with little to show for it, Shorty makes up for lost time, charging through unapologetically tough blues rockers such as "Sonic Boom," "Can't Get Enough" (not the Bad Company tune), and "What Good Is Life?" with the rough-and-tumble enthusiasm of someone half his 67 years. There are few surprises here--Shorty's throaty voice pummels through these tunes, pausing only long enough to make room for his fat, fluid leads to slice into the powerhouse rhythm section. Subtlety is not Shorty's strong point, and even when he accompanies himself on "Cost of Livin'" with just guitar and a tapping foot, it sounds like he's a caged tiger before feeding time. The title track concerns the average laborer's tough life, but this is primarily a blues album tied to the usual subjects of nefarious women doing Shorty wrong. In fact, his ex's phone prefix in "I Got Your Number" is 666. But nobody need look for profound lyrical insights when Shorty slings his molten guitar, pouring his psychedelicized solos like lava over anything in his path. Just push play and get out of the way. --Hal Horowitz