2018 – Ghetto Surf Music
By Phillip Smith; March 9, 2019
There’s a certain essence to the music of Billy Hector. He writes great songs, his guitar performances rock the house, and his voice is made for the blues. I love his work. This New Jersey blues artist has topped himself once again with his latest album, Some Day Baby. It’s not just the blues which Hector is a master of, but the man also knows his way around funk and soul in a tremendous way as well.
Once I hear the horns regally lead “Wizard of Babylon” in on the first track, I know I’m in store for a delightful listen. Hector’s guitar sizzles as the groove kicks in. With Winston Royce on bass guitar, and Val Romaine on drums, title track “Some Day Baby” is absolutely fabulous. It’s magnificently punched up with horn accompaniment from Tom Labella and John Martin, and magically charged with an energy much akin to that of the Red Hot Chili Peppers taking on Stevie Wonder’s “Superstition”. Another favorite is the George Clinton-esque, funk-infused “Butt Naked and Funk”. Bassist Erik Boyd and drummer Rich Monica pair up for the rhythm section on this wonderful jam. There’s an unavoidable intoxicating rhythm which draws me into “Creeper”. The deep tones in Hector’s vocals are superb as he sings this song of infidelity, which by the way is enjoyably topped off with keys from John Ginty. The way Hector transforms "Moonlight in Her Eyes" from a rolling blues tune to a Beatles-like orchestrated number is pure genius.
Hector quite nicely takes on a couple of traditional tunes with “On Your Bond”, originally released by Blind Willie Johnson in 1930 , and “Alabama Bound”. “Whisky”, a dark and brilliant tune dances atop a menacing atmosphere created by David Nunez on keys and drummer Larry Crockett. Hector plays this with an emotional bravado. The album comes to a lively close with “Road to Happiness”, a soulful duet with his wife and co-producer Suzan Lastovica.
Some Day Baby, a terrific album from start to finish, is definitely an addition to my favorites of 2018.
For more information about the artist, visit this website.. www.billyhector.com
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