One of Those Days
Gulf Coast Records
First formed in 1977 the Baton Rouge based band changed its name to Louisiana’s LeRoux “the French term for the thick and hearty gravy base that’s used to make a gumbo” just before releasing their 1978 eponymous debut. The album contained their single “New Orleans Ladies”, their southern anthem, voted “Song of the Century” by Gambit Magazine. The song evokes images of the laid back “Big Easy” and the bayou. Two more albums followed but they were soon dropped by their label. They signed with another label and dropped Louisiana from their name and became simply LeRoux. Their fourth album “Last Safe Place” was released in 1981 and it became their highest charting recording with three singles. The band toured with The Doobie Brothers, The Allman Brothers, Marshall Tucker and others. Between 2006 and 2008 the band appeared on three Tab Benoit albums. Louisiana’s LeRoux was inducted into The Louisiana Music Hall of Fame in 2009. Now after a ten-year hiatus they are releasing their seventh studio album “One of Those Days”.
The current band line-up includes original members Tony Haselden, lead, rhythm and slide guitar; and Rod Roddy, piano. They are joined by guitarist Jim Odom, who joined the band in 1982; keyboardist Nelson Blanchard, and percussionist Mark Duthu, who joined in 1997; drummer Randy Carpenter, who joined in 2010; and by their two newest members’ bassist Joey Decker, and lead vocalist Jeff McCarty, who joined in 2014. The backing vocals are by Haselden, Roddy, Odom, Blanchard and Decker. Former member bassist Leon Medica, who left in 2014, sits in on three tracks. The album was recorded at studios in New Orleans, Baton Rouge and Maurice Louisiana.
The songwriting team of Odom and Haselden have composed four new songs. Opening with the title track one is immediately impressed with McCarty’s lead vocal and the harmony of the backing vocalists. Duthu’s percussion provides the groove. Also from Odom and Haselden are “Don’t Rescue Me”; “Nothing Left to Lose” and “The Song Goes On”.
“Lifeline” was written by Haselden and Roddy and is reprised from their 1983 album “So Fired Up”. Their anthem “New Orleans Ladies” is reprised from their 1978 debut and features Benoit on guitar; a version was also recorded with LeRoux on Benoit’s album “Night Train to Memphis”. The instrumental “Sauce Piquante” is credited to the entire band.
Three more songs are included, Dustin Ransom’s “No One’s Gonna Love Me (Like The Way You Do)” from his album “Thread of Fire”; “After All” from Randy Sharp and Donald Anderson, and the danceable New Orleans styled “Lucy Anna” written by Richard Ferreira and Solomon Paul Marshall.
The full band is quite impressive and the airy vocal harmonies harken back to some of our best 1970’s bands. This is a fabulous recording.