Too Slim And The Taildraggers
Vizztone Label Group
Too Slim And The Taildraggers were first formed in 1986 by Spokane, Washington’s Timothy Lee “Too Slim” Langford. They released their debut recording “Swingin’ in the Underworld” in 1988. The prolific band received a 2012 Blues Music Award nomination in the category of “Blues Rock Album of the Year” for their tenth studio album “Shiver” recorded with The Texas Horns. They received a second nomination for “Blues Rock Album” in 2019 for “High Desert Heat”. They have fourteen previous studio albums and five live recordings. “The Remedy” is their twentieth album overall.
Although there have been many lineup changes throughout the band’s history the current lineup has been together since 2016. The bandleader Langford, whose influences include Lightnin’ Hopkins, Freddie King and Duane Allman, guitars and vocals; Zach Kasik, bass, banjo, guitar and vocals; and Jeff “Shakey” Fowlkes, drums, percussion and vocals. A trio of guest harp players includes Sheldon “Bent Reed” Ziro, Jason Ricci, and Richard “Rosy” Rosenblatt. The eleven tracks are mostly originals written or co-written by Langford with Kasik, with one added cover. The album is co-produced by the band and recorded, engineered, and mixed by Kasik at his Wild Feather Recording in Nashville, Tennessee.
Although just officially released July 17th, the album debuted on The Roots Music Blues Album Chart the week of June 13th, peaking at #3 on July 4th. The opening track “Last, Last Chance” is the first released for airplay and on it the band sounds like The Rolling Stones. The rhythm section of Kasik and Fowlkes lays down the strong foundation that enables Langford’s solo on the title track “She’s Got The Remedy”. My favorite track is “Devil’s Hostage” with the lyric “God please help me with the mess I’m in”. Harp ace “Bent Reed” is featured on both the boogie-styled “Keep The Party Rollin’”, and “Reckless” a song similar to Buddy Holly’s “Not Fade Away”. “Sunnyland Train” was written and first recorded by Elmore James in 1966; Langford’s slide guitar is fabulous. On both “Sure Shot” and “Snake Eyes” Kasik is featured on banjo; the latter featuring the lyric “this time I walk away with my pride”. The two time BMA award winning Jason Ricci, Best Instrumentalist – Harmonica (2010 and 2018), makes fluid magic on “Platinum Junkie”. “Rosy”, founder of the Vizztone Label Group, steps out front to play his harp on the swamp styled “Think About That”. The band closes with the poignant anthem of the road “Half A World Away”.
This is a thoroughly enjoyable album that is much more than I expected. Admittedly I am a late convert to the music of Too Slim And The Taildraggers, but this “Remedy” is just what the doctor ordered.