BABY‚S BACK Jesse "Wild Bill" Austin Cat.# RR0036
Cover Illustration by Keith LoBue
"A Combination of good playing, good arrangements, good songs, and good humor make a thoroughly enjoyable set of jumping blues/R&B. Organist Jesse Austin's two-fisted approach to his instrument couldn't be more different from Mel Rhyne's, but then the demands of his music are different as well. Austin doesn't do a lot of soloing, but seems perfectly at home laying on the thick chords behind his vocals or the instrumental solos (saxophonist Lou Marini steals the show in the solo department). Austin's vocals are rough and raspy, but very convincing and his original songs are often sly and witty in a way that is all too rare these days. If you‚re in the mood for a fun, exuberant set of blues, look no further." David Kuner copyright Cadence Magazine March 1996 Vol. 22 no. 3 (www.cadencebuilding.com)
"A BIG voice and lots of chops. That's the signature of Jesse Austin, bluesman extraordinaire. If you've got swingin‚ on your mind then put this CD in your ear. Well-produced by Joe Roesch, he has allowed Austin to exhibit a free flowing blues style that makes one want to dance to the music. The rhythm section consisting of Arti Dixson on drums, Scott Spray on bass, and Tim DeHuff on guitar play with complete commitment and reckless abandon. Add Austin on Hammond B-3 and the result is pure dynamite. Guesting on cuts 1,2 and 3 are The Blues Brothers Horn Section, "Blue" Lou Marini on saxophone, Alan "Mr. Fabulous" Rubin on trumpet and Birch "Slide" Johnson on the trombone. Fred Scerbo on saxophone, Mike Smith on trumpet and Drake Smith plays trombone on the rest of the album. If you've got kids, play them "Giving Mama and Papa The Blues." It‚s a great comment on what's happening on our streets today. Most of the tunes are written by Austin and are well performed. This unique collection of tunes combined with such great musicianship can only pay off at retail." John Rhys copyright Cash Box June 29, 1996 Vol LIX no.42.
"Jesse "Wild Bill" Austin kicks up a storm with the Blues Brothers Horns on Baby's Back (Roesch 0036; 53:20). A leather-lunged hollerin' vocalist reminiscent of Nappy Brown, Austin also lays down a thick organ cushion on this smoking collection of earthy, hard-driving jumped up originals like "Fat Back of Georgia," "Baby's Home To Stay" and "A Good Man is Hard to Find." Guest vocalist Maydie Myles turns in a soulful performance on the ballad "I'll Cry Tomorrow." And Austin conjures up the spirit of Eddie "Cleanhead" Vinson on the raunchy shuffle "Juice Head Baby." Slick horn arrangements by Drake Smith and several strong solos by saxophonist "Blue" Lou Marini." Bill Milkowski copyright Jazz Times Magazine May 1996 p.65 (www.jazztimes.com)
"Man, there are recordings that move you, and there are recordings that MOVE you. From the opening horns chords to the first bass notes instigating a torrid shuffle, Jesse "Wild Bill" Austin's latest recording, Baby's Back, is one of the most serious kick-ass, howlin' and shoutin', funky, soul-laced, horn-topped-bluesy recordings released in 1995. Austin, a blues and R&B veteran whose voice is a cross between Louie Armstrong and "Big" Joe Turner, and whose manning of the Hammond B-3 organ is reminiscent of Jimmy McGriff, proves that he's an artist to be reckoned with.
Enveloped by the groove-oriented rhythm section of Arti Dixson on drums and Scott Spray on bass, there are absolutely no lean cuts. Add the tasteful guitar sounds of Tim DeHuff and Austin would be perfectly complemented. But, the silver lining is the addition of the Blues Brothers Horns: Alan "Mr. Fabulous" Rubin on trumpet; Birch "Slide" Johnson on trombone; and one of the greatest blues saxmen of our time, Sweet "Blue" Lou Marini on Soprano, Alto, and Tenor saxophones. Their addition makes Baby's Back an incredible recording.
Of the recording's ten tracks, seven were penned by Austin. Of particular note are the horn-drivin' ever bluesy "Fat Back Of Georgia," "It Rained In Georgia," and "Baby's Home To Stay." The horn arrangements fit like a glove around Austin's vocal prowess.
Stretching his Leslie speakers to their fullest for that "fat-full" B-3 sound, Jesse Austin never lets up and earns the title, "groove-master." I've said it before, if Jesse Austin's music doesn't move you---it's time to cash in your chips." Andrew Robble (former editor of Blues Revue) copyright Music City Blues Oct 1996 Vol.5 no.10 (www.musiccityblues.org)
"Vocalist Maydie Myles, sings one of Austin's tunes, "I'll Cry Tomorrow." Myles delivers a divine sweetness and builds along with the Blues Brothers Horns for a strong and passionate finish that leaves you saying, WOW! People, I ask you, where has this voice been !
Austin wrote "I'll Cry Tomorrow" in 1951, and he had never found a singer who could "put it across" the way he wanted it. He couldn't sing it himself because the range of the melody went too low and too high. Maydie sang it once and nailed it. Roesch Records will produce a blues project for Maydie in the very near future, so keeps your eyes open for this new blues diva; this girl has the magic." Shannon Love copyright Jet City Blues Dec. 1995 Seventh Edition Vol.3