[Harp-L] Review: Dan Treanor's new CD – My Blues Diary

Dan Treanor’s latest album is a tour de force; a musical roadmap of Dan’s
blues journey from 1979 to the present. Yet each cut shares a stylistic and
thematic key with the others. This is truly the blues diary of the last 21
years from a man steeped in blues music, and blues harp in particular.

The talent on the album is impressive. Darryl Lee sings most of the cuts
with an understated passion and brief moments of sobbing power. It is a
unique and effective blues voice. People I know on the album include session
man Rich Reno – a great slide guitarist – and my bandmate Charles Billiris.
Outstanding bluesman Randall Dubis also makes an appearance on ‘Blue Bossa,’
the 6th track. The entire roster is impressive.

But this is Dan Treanor’s baby and you can tell he loves it. Dan is known
mostly for his brilliant harp playing and it is on good display here. His
teasing, lilting harp lines on Sonny Boy’s “Nine Below Zero” are beautiful.
His tone on the Chicago-style “Love Me With A Feeling” is worthy of Maxwell
Street. Dan is at his best in minor blues with a Latin beat, and there are a
couple of those gems on the CD. Lonesome Railroad Track, 3 O’Clock in the
Morning, Stoop Down Baby; they all kill. My band performed the song “Cut
With Dynamite” at the Colorado Blues Society IBC Finals with Dan sitting in.
All thirteen tracks are keepers.

The album is well produced. The sound is warm and personal across all the
cuts. Vocals are vibrant and detailed. I thought the opening to Mean Woman
Blues was a bit heavy, but that is mild criticism.

Mostly this album is about Dan Treanor’s love for blues harmonica. His licks
are actually infrequent, but always beautifully soulful. I’ve already heard
phrases I plan to steal.

I give this album a IV+ on the I-IV-V scale of blues harp excellence. Highly
recommended. Contact Dan Treanor to find out how to get the CD:

-Rick Davis
The Blues Harp Amps Blog

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