Bob Lanza Blues Band
“It’s Time To Let Go”
Connor Ray Music
Bob Lanza was a member of the New Jersey blues scene for quite some time before receiving recognition. He learned by apprenticing as he played guitar with pianist Floyd Phillips (of the Johnny Copeland Band), James Cotton and Dave Perkins. Lanza’s earliest appearance on record was on a compilation to raise money for the victim’s of 911; he appeared on 2002’s “Jersey’s Talkin”. In 2009 Lanza invested and self-produced “Things Ain’t So Bad” featuring his band with a horn section. In 2010 Lanza won the local IBC competition and the core band went to Memphis. Lanza followed up with 2013’s “Til The Pain is Gone” featuring the four piece band from Warren, N.J.
News of Lanza’s abilities as a fierce Chicago styled guitarist began to spread and he signed a recording contract with the Connor Ray Music label. In 2015 Lanza released “From Hero to Zero” featuring guest artists Trudy Lynn and harmonica ace Steve Krase.
This is Lanza’s fourth studio recording. The album was recorded in Roosevelt, N.J. and in Houston, Texas. The Bob Lanza Blues Band consists of Lanza, guitar and vocals; Sandy Joren, bass; Randy Wall or Arne Wendt, piano and B-3; and Vin Mott, drums. Krase, Don Erdman, and drummer Mott alternate on harp. The Cranberry Lake Horns are led by saxophonist Rob Chaseman. The Robernaires provide the background vocals.
Lanza contributes five new songs including the title track “It’s Time To Let Go” with Chaseman on tenor and some jazzy guitar phrasing; the impassioned “When The Sun Comes Up”; the instrumental “Rushn’ The Blues”; “Johnny Smith” featuring Krase on harp, and “Your Not in Texas” with Wall on the piano.
Selected covers include Hank Williams’s “Mind Your Own Business” again featuring Chaseman’s sax; Muddy Water’s “Walkin Thru The Park”; Willie Dixon’s “Go No Further” with Wall on piano; Percy Mayfield’s “Love Me or Leave Me” with some fabulous guitar from Lanza; Ronnie Earl’s “Follow Your Heart”; and Deadric Malone’s “Your Turn To Cry” originally recorded by Otis Rush and featuring a passionate vocal from Lanza.
The Bob Lanza Blues Band is one of those bands deserving further attention. Best to check them out.