Tuesday, March 1, 2011

"A Look Back" - Charles White Band 20 Year Anniversary Special CD/DVD (Self Released)

By Malcolm Kennedy  
A Look Back…. is just what it says: a 20 year anniversary look back at the career of one of the Pacific NW region’s finest and most beloved entertainers. The CD features a dozen cuts, including remastered studio originals picked from the bands two studio releases, 1992’s High Livin’ and 1997’s Not Easily Amused, along with some previously unreleased live material. In addition there is a bonus live DVD that is just a hoot, with plenty of memories for those of us who were there in the clubs and at the shows. The DVD is a hand held video of home movie quality. Especially now that Charles has past, this DVD is priceless and a blast to watch. Charles received the Washington Blues Society “Best of the Blues” Award for Entertainer of the Year four times, along with Best Band and induction into the Hall of Fame. It is quite evident why he was so honored.

Along with classics from the studio CDs like Bill Blackstone’s “Pink Champagne” and “Don’t Make Me Wait” are some covers Charles often performed at shows like “Thrill Is Gone,” and Bill Withers’ “Ain’t No Sunshine.” Add to that a live medley of Jr. Walker’s ”Shotgun” with tastes of “Susie Q,”"Louie Louie,” “Purple Haze,” “Inna Goda Davida” along with the popular James Brown medley, and to quote Charles ‘I said, Lord have mercy!’

Also included are two of my favorite studio cuts, “Paid My Dues”, a slow burner that is on fire and the instrumental “Moonlight” both penned by Scott E. Lind, and you have a CD jam packed with highlights. On Elmore James’ “Can’t Stop Loving My Baby” Scotty struts his stuff on a Duane Allman inspired slide guitar. The 12 tracks on A Look Back…. offer a full hour of good time music. 

Charles was a pure entertainer. Listening to these tracks I can picture him in my mind, dancing, wiggling, bumping, and shimmying. His head doing the bob and weave, dressed sharp, with a hat and open collar so he could breath. Strutting about the stage as founding band members Scott on guitar and Bill on sax leave it all on stage. My only complaint is the lack of information regarding the line-ups of who is playing, dates and places of the live pieces, and although the DVD provides some info it would be nice to have a more fuller picture. 

A Look Back… is a must have for anyone who ever caught this band in action and for those who didn’t this is a great starting place.

To purchase the CD/DVD set, CLICK HERE to email Blackstone Music from their web page.


  1. No comments? Well I would but I guess I would be 'bias'. At the very least, after all this time, I'd like to present a very 'Heartfelt' but 'Belated' THANK YOU to Todd Harrison!
    -Bill Blackstone

    1. Thanks Bill. Thanks for the great music. Malcolm wrote the piece. I'm just helping het the word out!