Sunday, February 14, 2016

Rock Is Red #17 - Irv Lyons Jr.

In all of the write ups for Oneida singer-songwriter and guitarist IRV LYONS JR. his music is described as being "rooted in Latin influenced jazz" in the vein of  CARLOS SANTANA but after hearing his latest album WONDERLAND one can not dismiss a clear and present STEELY DAN influence as well. The CD WONDERLAND is a nonstop party and LYONS and company lay down one irresistible rocking R&B groove after another. The opening track STARLENE is a sexy little romp about a leggy looker - the kind that thousands upon thousands of guitar riffs have been inspired by and written for. In addition to his own serviceable vocal performance LYONS partners with a a couple of other talents on the album. While he gets the party started on the track FIRE WITHOUT A FLAME it is the vocal performance of KIM MONROE that gives the playful little number it's playfulness. On the bluesy title track LYONS shares the mic with JOE DRISCOLL and the two of them give the track a SAM AND DAVE-styled delivery . In our interview with him LYONS gave us his reasons why Native music has never quite hit the mainstream since REDBONE's COME AND GET YOUR LOVE. It was strange that he brought that band up because a lot of WONDERLAND's roots can be heard in that legendary minimalist approach to R&B. Yes, this album carries on a whole different kind of musical legacy in Indian Music outside of Traditional music. Pop chart success may not be int he cards for LYONS and WONDERLAND but a NAMMY or GRAMMY nomination doesn't seem like too much to hope for. 

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