Electric Blues
Little Mike and the Tornadoes - Hot Shot
Wild Dog 1998
 
Review Published April 17, 1998
Little the Mike & Tornadoes at Maximum Blues
AMG Artist Bio/Discography/CD Reviews



Sound Clips, Discography
Track Listing
1 Driving All Day
2 I Found Out
3 Trying to Make It
4 Mother-in-Law Blues
5 Start to Leave My Baby
6 I Won't Be Your Fool
7 Hot Shot
8 All Night Driver
9 True Love
10 Goin' Back to Florida
11 Told You Once
12 Donw At McCrone's

EB Rating - 3.5

Right from the start, Hot Shot comes at you with energy, pumping out one driving song after another. This is one good-time band. I have a hunch they are really in their element when performing live. Except for one lone song, this is a collection of original songs written by Little Mike. His harmonica playing is rowdy and agressive, and as good as any I've heard.
The band, which is based in New York City, is tight and well balanced. Guitar is ever present, but not a dominating force on the CD. There are areas where it does come through nicely. All in all, this is a team effort.
The lyrics are often witty and whimsical, as in I Found Out, a story of not so true love, and Mother-In-Law Blues, a song son-in-law's everywhere will relate to. While the lyrics to the latter are fun and casual, the music definitely is not. This song is founded on very strong straight ahead blues, including some nice lead work on guitar, followed by a little piano by Little Mike.
Start to Leave My Baby is an up-beat shuffle, and Hot Shot is a driving instrumental, featuring Little Mike's formidable harpsmanship, mixed in with some more nice guitar.
Then, just when you think you have the band figured out, they hit you with Going Back to Florida, a Muddy Waters style slow blues, that may actually be the best vehicle for Little Mike's harp. He really throws himself into this song. If you like harmonica and good time music, check out Little Mike and the Tornadoes.

From the Liner Notes
This album is my most traditional recording to date. Hot Shot was influenced by, and recorded in the style of, my most favorite blues recordings by James Cotton, Otis Spann, Paul Butterfield, Jimmy Rogers, Jimmy Reed and Muddy Waters. Recorded "live off the floor" in Studio A at New York's Electric Lady Studios, it is undoctored, pure blues in the 1960's fashion. I hope you like it. signed Little Mike