The release of Moving In Blue is Danny Kalb’s 5th solo release in a career that dates back to his roots in the 1963 Greenwich Village folk scene. Kalb is best known for his work in the seminal band The Blues Project that he founded, one of the first groups to bring electric blues into the world of psychedelic rock in the mid 60’s.
On this sprawling double CD set, Kalb mines the cannon of the American songbook, mixing traditional folk, blues and gospel standards ("Baby, Please Don’t Go", "Got My Mojo Working", "I’ll Fly Away"), and some early rock ‘n’ roll ("Sally Go ‘Round The Roses" by The Jaynetts and later Tim Buckley and Pentangle) with lesser known treasures ("God’s Radar" as performed by Dixie Hummingbirds, "Black Coffee" as performed by Sarah Vaughn and "So Doggone Lonesome" by Johnny Cash). There are two Dylan covers from two different eras ("It Takes A Lot To Laugh, It Takes A Train To Cry" and "Make You Feel My Love" ). Reoccurring themes include love and longing ("Can’t Be Satisfied", "Waitress at The Troubadour"), religion and mortality ("Death Comes Creeping", "Goin’ Down Slow"), and transportation ("(I Heard That) Lonesome Whistle Blow", "Yellow Cab"). Kalb’s self penned numbers open disc 1 with a short, sprightly 2-minute rock number ("Feels Just Like Goin Home") and closes disc 2 with "Yellow Sky", a ballad which wouldn’t sound out of place on Johnny Cash’s later sessions produced by Rick Rubin. Kalb’s beautiful "Mournin’ at Midday" is perhaps one of the album’s high points and "Waitress at the Troubadour" is a sweet tale of connection harking back to an earlier era.
Appearing musicians on the CD are friends from Danny’s past (Roy Blumenfeld, founding drummer of the Blues Project) and present (Mark Ambrosino, producer, drummer and label president). Culled from nearly a decade of formal and informal recordings at The Madhouse, the flagship Queens studio of Ambrosino and his label Sojourn Records, Moving In Blue embodies the perfection of a great, labored work, lovingly recorded, produced, mixed and mastered, and capturing great performances that will stand the test of time.
"Today, and here on this generous album, Kalb brings to his work the experiences of the same number of decades (and more) that the artists he so admired back then brought to theirs. And he stomps with soulful joy through one genre after another."
-Sean Wilentz, editor of the New Republic, writer of Bob Dylan in America (2010)