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Steve Hackett

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Steve Hackett Blues with a Feeling album cover
2.88 | 167 ratings | 11 reviews | 4% 5 stars

Good, but non-essential

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Studio Album, released in 1994

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Born in Chicago (3:58)
2. The Stumble (2:55)
3. Love of Another Kind (4:00)
4. Way Down South (4:29)
5. A Blue Part of Town (3:04)
6. Footloose (2:30)
7. Tombstone Roller (5:18)
8. Blues with a Feeling (4:22)
9. Big Dallas Sky (4:48)
10. The 13th Floor (3:29)
11. So Many Roads (3:15)
12. Solid Ground (4:28)

Total Time 46:36

Line-up / Musicians

- Steve Hackett / vocals, guitar & harmonica, producer

- Julian Colbeck / keyboards
- Jerry Peal / organ (3)
- Doug Sinclair / bass
- Dave "Taif" Ball / bass (3,4)
- Hugo Degenhardt / drums

and The Kew Horns (6-8):
- Matt Dunkley / trumpet
- John Lee / trumpet
- Pete Long / tenor saxophone
- John Chapman / baritone saxophone

Releases information

Artwork: Lippa Pearce (design) with Adrian Bell & Paul Clark (photo)

CD Kudos ‎- PERMCD27 (1994, UK)
CD Herald ‎- HER 013-2 (1994, US)

Thanks to ProgLucky for the addition
and to projeKct for the last updates
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Buy STEVE HACKETT Blues with a Feeling Music

STEVE HACKETT Blues with a Feeling ratings distribution

(167 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(4%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(19%)
Good, but non-essential (38%)
Collectors/fans only (28%)
Poor. Only for completionists (11%)

STEVE HACKETT Blues with a Feeling reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Alucard
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars This is a straight forward blues record with SH on guitar, harmonica and singing duties. Good, but then there are so many excellent Blues records, and this one is too mainstream.The only song I really like is Big Dallas Sky, which is typical SH, a dark and moody ballad with a definite prog feeling. A nice feature is the MP3 section, which comes with all the newer Camino Releases. You got 16 SH tracks(uncut!) 2 from Ian Mc Donald and 2 from Chester Thompson.
Review by Gatot
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars I'm a big fan of Steve Hackett but I only got this album recently because I did not think it's gonna be a great blues if it's played by progger, especially Steve Hackett. Don't get me wrong, I love blues music very much but more on what my friends down here at my country call it as "White Blues" instead of "Black Blues" usually played by John Lee Hooker, Muddy Waters, etc. I have almost all albums of John Mayall and The Bluesbreaker, also some albums of Eric Clapton, Edgar Winter, Johny Winter, Keef Hartley Band, Climax Blues Band, Living blues, Cuby + The Blizards, etc. Some Black blues I like include BB King, Muddy Waters, Buddy Guy and other Black blues musicians like Son Seals, Johny Heartsman, Fenton Robinson, etc.

Why The Blues? Why a cry in the night? Can the Whites? Whatever did happen at Eel Pie Island? BB says "Anyone who ever lost a woman" can play the (definite article) blues! . That's how Mr. Hackett opens his views on the CD sleeve. Through this album he proves to be an excellent blues musician with his unique style because he does not change his guitar sound except that he plays blues notes and chords. That has made this album so attractive because you can hear typical Steve Hackett guitar sound but this time with an intense blues nuance.

One thing that really triggered me to buy this CD was the assumption that Hackett played excellent blues through his song "Turn Back Time" from "Cured" album. Even though it's not the same but this album is a good thread for those who enjoy blues and Hackett guitar style. All tracks featured here are excellent ones starting with relatively fast tempo "Born In Chicago" (Gravenites) right away through to "Solid Ground" (Hackett, Sinclair, Collbeck and Degenhardt). When he sings "So Many Roads" (Marshall), it sounds like a vocal quality of John Mayall. Drumming by Degenhardt is also an excellent and energetic one.

As the title implies, this is not a prog album. Instead, this CD offers excellent blues music, played with Hackettian guitar plus harmonica. As far as rating, this is an excellent album. For those of you who enjoy Hackett's guitar style and blues, this album is a must. Keep on proggin'..!

Peace on earth and mercy mild - GW

Review by chessman
4 stars This is another good example of Steve's wonderful diversity. Of course, he started out as a blues harmonica player, and he proves he knows his roots here. No, this isn't the deep down and dirty blues of the American south, nor is it the English blues of the sixties. It is modern day Hackett blues, and excellent stuff at that. 'Born In Chicago' is a cover song, and quite a fast paced one. The trademark Hackett guitar sound is present here, as on all tracks, so you can still tell it's Steve, yet this time in a blues setting. 'The Stumble' is an instrumental, and a fastish one at that. 'Love Of Another Kind' is a typical Hackett track, with good harmonies. 'Way Down South' is a gentle, subtle song, with again nice harmonies on the chorus. 'A Blue Part Of Town' is truly wonderful. Soulful harmonica playing over Colbeck's restrained keyboards, it is a bitter-sweet instrumental, slow and melodic. One of the highlights. 'Footloose' raises the tempo again, another good instrumental. 'Tombstone Roller' is mid paced, and has a sharp guitar led ending, with good drumming here and some high pitched notes from Steve. 'Blues With A Feeling' is a calm, mid paced song, with understated guitar playing, the most verse led song on here. 'Big Dallas Sky', as others have commented, is almost a blues epic! Another highlight, it has lovely keyboard soundscapes, overlaid with classic Hackett guitar notes, seemingly picked out of thin air. 'The 13th Floor' is another instrumental, again set at a mid to fastish pace. 'So Many Roads' has good vocals from Steve, with more atmospheric guitar in the background. A very strong song. Finally, 'Solid Ground' is a mid pace track with aggressive vocals and a strong fading ending. The harmonica is present on a few tracks here, and is well played. I would like to hear, one day, an album of harmonica playing from Steve. It would be different, and would showcase another of his talents. A strong album, recommended for Hackett fans, modern blues fans, harmonica fans, and, of course, guitar fans in general. Another four star effort.
Review by erik neuteboom
3 stars In the Sixties my progrock guitar hero Steve Hackett used to visit the famous London music center The Marquee to watch the blues legends John Mayall and Eric Clapton. As so many adolescents he was highly inspired and determined to copy his heroes, first he bought a harmonica and later a guitar, then he started to practise on the usual blues scales. Of course we know Steve Hackett as one of the archetypical progrock guitarplayers and a decent classical guitarist but how about those blues roots. Well, on this CD I was delighted about Hackett his blues guitar work and harmonica play in the covers Born In Chicago, The Stumble, Blues With A Feeling and So Many Roads. Some own compositions are also worth listening: A Blue Part Of The Town contains a fine duet between Hackett on harmonica and Julian Colbeck delivering modern keyboard sounds, Footloose is in the vein of the late Stevie Ray Vaughan (tight and fluent rhythm with fiery and biting runs) and The 13th Floor (loaded with strong interplay between gutiar and piano). But I am not pleased with Hackett his quite dull vocals, to me it seems that he is too happy with his Brasilian girldfriend Kim Poor to sing about the blues! It would have been a better idea if Hackett had invited a wide range of guest singers, like on his second solo album Please Don't Touch.
Review by ZowieZiggy
1 stars I have never been into blues and never will be.

Even when one of my preferred band started their career and released a "blues oriented" album (Led Zep to name it) I couldn't be convinced (three stars was the rating). And Plant was of course waaaaaaaaaaaaay better on the vocals than Steve will ever be. I guess that no one would argue with this.

As the title mentions, all songs are bluesy ones. Some with a feeling (?), some other ones without (most of them). Steve's work is diversified throughout the years. He was able to produce almost the music he wanted from the late seventies up till the mid nineties. Benefiting of a kind of a free artistic policy.

Most of his work was not commercial driven (quality was more important). But, it is almost impossible that this album should please the old Steve's fan base. It has nothing to do with prog and even if I am a HUGE Hendrix fan, these mellow blues songs featured on this album are just boring to my ears.

To track one and only great song here is like performing a quest for the holy grail. You will NEVER find it. The worst being reached by "Footlose". Awful trumpets but great beat.

This is the type of albums you would have liked Steve NEVER recorded. Sorry Steve, but we agreed a long time ago about such poor albums. You told me that "Till We Have Faces" would be the last poor one you would ever release. But you probably forgot about this one.

One star for this never ending "press next" exercise.

Review by SouthSideoftheSky
2 stars There Are Many Sides To Steve Hackett

Blues Rock is certainly not my favourite style of music, but I can enjoy the odd Blues guitar lick or even sometimes a whole Blues Rock song. But not even my hero Steve Hackett can make a whole album of Blues Rock interesting to me. Like I said, I like the odd Blues guitar lick, especially coming from Steve, and I also enjoy his harmonica playing, and I love his vocals. But what I like best about Steve is his ability to fuse different styles into something new and exciting. It is when he alternates between his many different influences within the context of the same album, or even within the same song, that he creates his best moments, not when he concentrates on one style only for a whole album.

There are many Blues guitarists in the world, and many Classical guitarists too, and Rock guitarists, etc. But what is so special about Steve for me is his ability to blend all of his influences into one. This ability is put on hold whenever he decides to go into one single direction for a whole album. With Blues With A Feeling, like with Steve's Classical guitar albums, he goes too far into one single direction and thus looses some of what makes him so special as an artist. It would be very interesting indeed to see what would have turned out if Steve had attempted to integrate and fuse some of this Blues Rock material with some material from a Classical guitar album like Momentum and a Pop/Rock album like Till We Have Faces. It is hard to imagine perhaps, but I suspect that the result would be a (much weaker) version of the excellent Guitar Noir album, which is a great example of an album that shows all the different aspects of Steve Hackett within the context of the same album; Rock, Pop, Blues, Jazz, Folk and Classical, etc.

I am not going to comment on each individual song here since they are mostly quite similar. Steve's guitar sound is recognizable, as are his vocals and harmonica playing, but overall this music still manages to be rather anonymous. Blues With A Feeling is exactly what the title says, but the feeling in question is not a very good one. This is by no means a disaster or a poor album, but it is not very interesting or memorable either.

Like Hackett's Classical albums, Blues With A Feeling is recommended strictly to fans and collectors, or to people with a deep special interest in Blues Rock.

Review by tarkus1980
3 stars I was born to overrate albums like this. Putting it mildly, this is an album without a natural audience; many prog fans would hate the idea of a great British prog guitarist "reducing" himself to doing a pure blues album, and most blues fans would hate the idea of their favorite genre being perverted by a British prog guitarist. If any major prog guitarist was going to do a blues album, though, it was going to be Steve Hackett; not only did he have an eagerness to dabble in as many genres as he could, and not only had he done a pure blues song once before, but blues was his first love, and harmonica was his first instrument. No, the fit isn't perfect; his voice, however treated and modified it may be, doesn't quite have the oomph to be fully effective in this setting, and he definitely doesn't sound like somebody who's been doing blues all his life. And yet, these performances are far more than passable, full of spark and verve, and the very lack of total familiarity with the blues that leads some to dismiss this album is what adds a unique tension that makes me like it as much as I do.

One of the original tracks on here manages to provide a delightful fusion of Steve's natural compositional tendencies with the blues framework. "Big Dallas Sky" sounds a little dumb at first, what with the low-pitched spoken delivery, but the main guitar line in the instrumental breaks is Hackett at his very best, and the music in the verses is pretty and awfully atmospheric. It's definitely an approach to the blues totally unlike anything I've heard before, and it's a clear highlight.

Of the other tracks, four are covers and sevens are originals (either written himself or in collaboration, but it's not immediately clear upon listening which are which). Among the covers, I find myself most partial towards "So Many Roads," which is full of slow wailing lines played with a great tone, but the opening "Born in Chicago" gets things off to a rollicking start, with some really fun harmonica. Among the originals, I really like "Love of Another Kind" (which has lots of great guitar and harmonica interplay) and "Solid Ground" (based around a fun harmonica riff and featuring a delightful chorus), but that may well just because they're upbeat and they're the first and last originals on the album, respectively. Among the slower pieces, "A Blue Part of Town" is a definite standout (it's a moody instrumental featuring harmonica and keyboards without any guitar), and ... oh wait, I guess the only other slow original is "Way Down South" (which is alright though not really anything special). Anyway, "Footloose" and "Tombstone Roller" are both great up-tempo numbers, especially the latter with all of its elaborate guitar passages (definitely more prog than blues).

The rest of the album isn't really filled with standout tracks, but I quite enjoy the rest of the material on the whole, and in the end I feel quite comfortable giving this the grade I do. Yes, this album is somewhat of an elaborate joke (nobody was expecting this blues obsession to manifest on more than one album, and it didn't), and it's definitely not a great blues album, but it's undoubtedly a good blues album. As of writing, it's quite out of print, and I'd be surprised if it ever came back, but if you can find a way to hear "Big Dallas Sky" and a few other tracks from it, you should.

Latest members reviews

2 stars Hackett shows one of his many faces - blues oriented one. Already in recent releases, his harmonica playing and some bluesy guitar could make one expect a more bluesy album to appear. Hackett's harmonica playing qualities are undeniable and they are closest to really good blues that Hackett can ... (read more)

Report this review (#2338860) | Posted by sgtpepper | Thursday, February 27, 2020 | Review Permanlink

2 stars I was curious how it sounded when Steve Hacket played the blues, but after couple of listenings I could only imagine why Steve Hackett recorded this album at all. It is not progressive music, and the blues played on it is not a blues someone would expect. Besides routine average blues numbers, ... (read more)

Report this review (#78786) | Posted by cedo | Friday, May 19, 2006 | Review Permanlink

5 stars Blues was the ingredient that remains to fill up the holistic musical career of Steve Hackett. In this work he figures like the typical hard blues musician, I refear to Gary Moore tendence who also belongs to the HMS british "destroyers " with a lot of passion to play the blues guitar. Again and aga ... (read more)

Report this review (#26204) | Posted by Queno | Sunday, March 7, 2004 | Review Permanlink


Report this review (#26203) | Posted by | Tuesday, January 27, 2004 | Review Permanlink

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