The C.D. Woodbury Band is back following up their fantastic debut disc, Sunbanks Live!, with an ear-catching album of original music titled Monday Night! This Washington-based band works together like a finely-tuned engine, with all of the musicians handing out exceptional craftsmanship. Woodbury can play dynamic guitar, has rich vocals and is a superb songwriter. He is complimented highly by a crack-unit ensemble featuring Chris Kliemann on keys, Mike Marinig on sax, Mike Fish on bass and Don Montana on drums. Marinig and Montana both offer their vocals as well.
The band can turn things up on all levels, often sounding like a much larger group than they actually are. They can sound like a Kansas City big band on numbers like “These Blues Keep Me Right Here” and Montana pounds out a jungle drum rhythm to open “Ring-A-Ding” that easily brings to mind Gene Krupa. There are masterfully presented boogie pieces like the Texas shuffle of “Been So Long” or the tale of a nasty relationship with “Mean Jenny,” a girl so bad that she can make an alligator cry and make a boat out of your hide. “Monday Night” is a funky second line number and “Pleasure’s All Mine” is more of a pop oriented piece kind of a la Steely Dan or Utopia. There is also a nice bluesy jazz tune closing the disc titled “SauBall Blues” that truly showcases the band working together to perfection.
Perhaps my favorite number of Monday Night! Has to be the burning blues “Pawn Shop.” It tells the story all too well known by musicians of how C.D. has to take his beloved guitar to the pawn in order to make ends meet and to be able to eat until that next gig brings in the dough. It’s a classic Albert Collins-styled blues story-line and he soars on the strings on the song making you feel his pain.
Monday Night! certainly foresees many good things ahead for the C.D. Woodbury Band. Definitely an album that should find a lot of time on any blues fan’s player. It will no doubt find it on mine.
Total Time: 48:38
These Blues Keep Me Right Here / Mean Jenny / Been So Long / Monday Night / Pawn Shop / Pleasure’s All Mine / Ring-A-Ding / Burn The Bridge / Two Wheels / SauBall Blues