Showing posts sorted by date for query jennifer westwood. Sort by relevance Show all posts
Showing posts sorted by date for query jennifer westwood. Sort by relevance Show all posts

Saturday, June 8, 2024

#687 : Jennifer Westwood & the Handsome Devils - Mad Man's World (

2024 – Maverick Ranch

Release Date : June 17, 2024

By Phillip Smith; June 8, 2024


Original source :

Almost nine years have passed since Jennifer Westwood and the Handsome Devils released Greetings From This Town. I listened to that record heavily for a very long time. Mad Man’s World, their latest album is a fantastic ten-track recording. It was very much worth the wait. I absolutely love Westwood’s voice. It sounds magnificent as she pours it over an amalgam of Detroit Soul, Muscle Shoals, and American Roots music. With Westwood fronting the band on vocals, the Handsome Devils are comprised of Westwood’s husband Dylan Dunbar on guitar, bassist Chuck Bartels, drummers Ron Pangburn and David Below, percussionist Brandon Husken, keyboardist Lucky Haskins, horn players Joshua James and Jimmy Smith, and backing vocalists Susan Marshall and Reba Russell.

Mad Man’s World opens up in a vibrant Latin western-scape “Viva Terlingua”. This homage to Jerry Jeff Walker has all the brilliance of an Ennio Morricone spaghetti western score. Title-track “Mad Man’s World” follows up in a bluesy Dap-Kings fashion topped with horns and swirling keys, as Westwood calls out the systematic misogyny which has plagued the world since the beginning of time.  My ears perk up even more when Dunbar serves up a Clapton-esque guitar solo. He then pulls me tightly in to “Bulletproof” with his lingering, blues-soaked licks. From a delicate and vulnerable beginning, the song emerges as an anthem to overcoming one’s obstacles. I was gob-smacked when I heard their cover of The Parliaments’ 1967 hit “(I Wanna) Testify”. Written by George Clinton, this track is kept funky and fueled with Sixties soul. The infectious melody of “Bad Luck Charm” beckons me in to a melancholy masterpiece about bad luck and heartache. “How am I Supposed to Live This Way” brings the album to its close with a driving rhythm and cornucopia of sound. It truly is a grand finale.  

Jennifer Westwood and the Handsome Devils’ Mad Man’s World is undeniably great from beginning to end. It’s one of my favorite albums I have heard this year.       



For more information about Jennifer Westwood, visit the website at


Follow the link below for more PhillyCheeze reviews featuring Jennifer Westwood:


Saturday, June 17, 2017

Joseph Veloz - Offerings

2017 – JMVelozs
By Phillip Smith; June 17, 2017

It’s a rare treat when a bass player’s talent takes top billing, as Joseph Veloz does.  This Detroit area musician who has played with many greats over the years, such as Lucky Peterson, Matt “Guitar” Murphy, Mississippi Heat, James Armstrong and Joanne Shaw Taylor, joins forces on his new album, Offerings, with guitarist Shawn Kellerman, keyboardist Jim Alfredson , and drummer Andrew “Blaze” Thomas.  As if that’s not enough, he is also accompanied by very special musical guests Lucky Peterson, Biscuit Miller, Greg Nagy, and Jennifer Westwood & Dylan Dunbar (Jennifer Westwood and the Handsome Devils).   

The funk rolls in on a blast of cosmic keys and thumping bass, straddling a bombardment of badass guitar from Kellerman for the instrumental “Just Jammin’”.  A wave of musical delight washes over me as this one plays on.  Featuring the signature sounds of Lucky Peterson on vocals, “Jukin’ and Shakin’” shifts into high gear for a refreshing blast of spirit-lifting, feel-good, high-energy blues. Alfredson’s performance on the organ is simply amazing.  Biscuit Miller lends his fabulous voice to the infectious soulful groove of Eddie Kirkland’s “Good Good Day”. 

Being a huge fan of Jennifer Westwood and the Handsome Devils, I immediately fell in love with the outstanding cover of Dolly Parton’s “Jolene”.  Westwood’s vocal delivery is beautiful and iconic.  Kellerman dishes out huge doses of searing slide guitar, which opens up for a dazzling guitar solo from Dunbar.  This is a terrific track indeed.   

Veloz closes this eight song treasure out a breakneck performance on Prince’s “Kiss” with Joey Spina (Whitey Morgan and the 78’s) on the mic.  The creativity in Veloz’s musical arrangements and production choices are the icing on the cake of his extraordinary talent as a bassist.  And that’s what makes Offerings such a blast to hear. 


Saturday, December 5, 2015

Jennifer Westwood and the Handsome Devils - Greetings From This Town

2015 – Jennifer Westwood and the Handsome Devils
By Phillip Smith; Dec 5, 2015


I have nothing but good things to say about Detroit band, Jennifer Westwood and the Handsome Devils.  Their debut album Greetings From This Town is an intoxicating Memphis-meets-Nashville blend of rock, blues, and country.  Lead vocalist Jennifer Westwood is joined by guitarist Dylan Dunbar, bassist Jeremy Mackinder, pianist/organist Jarrod Champion, and drummer Matt Stahl.

Westwood’s sultry yet powerful vocals instantly draw me in on “Bad Luck Charm” a rockin’ track sweetened by Dunbar with luscious guitar licks.  I’m quite drawn to “Living on the Fringe”, a relatable country song about just getting through the day.  Westwood has such a pretty voice; it reminds me a lot of Linda Ronstadt, especially on this track.  “Nobody’s Business” is one cool as hell post-break-up song.  Champion lays down some ominous chords on the organ while Dunbar serves up a funky dose of cowboy surf guitar.  

Westwood and the Handsome Devils put their own spin on R.L. Burnside’s “Skinny Woman” with “Redneck Man”.  Westwood and Dunbar nail this duet to the tree as they belt the song out with conviction and true grit.  Dunbar dishes out a magnificent guitar performance on this one too.   Other stand-out covers include Eddie Rabbit’s “Driving My Life Away” and the Stones bluesy classic from their Exile on Main Street album “Ventilator Blues”.

There’s something magical about Greetings From This Town.  It is an absolutely wonderful listen and music for the rustic soul.