"I think Bruce Conte is one of the best guitarists in the business. (Rhythm Meets the Blues) fits the current blues style while retaining the funk and R&B sound Bruce is famous for. I enjoy his new CD immensely."
-- longtime friend and colleague, Steve Perry of Journey
After a stint in Las Vegas during the 80's and brief retreat into Jazz in the late 90's, Bruce Conte is back on familiar ground, flexing his soul and funk-drenched skills on Rhythm Meets the Blues. Conte assembled an all star cast for the twelve-song CD including guest vocalists Gavin Christopher (Rufus), Bobby Kimball (Toto) and former Tower of Power band mate, Lenny Williams, who sings the title track.
"Snatch It Back" is a prime example of Conte's understated, yet effective approach, adding a cool sense of "hip" to the popular standard. Further evidence can be heard on "Feel So Bad", and the self-penned "It's Always Darkest Before the Dawn", both of which feature Bruce behind the microphone.
A veritable who's who of L.A. musicians joins Conte, including several guest vocalists. Former TOP band mate Lenny Williams turns in a chilling performance on "Bullet Proof" a Memphis gem with it's sultry melody and Williams' soulful interpretation. Powerhouse songbird Windy Barnes turns up the heat on "Too Sad To Sing the Blues", a number sure to win over even the most critical blues fan, and Eddie Reddick delights listeners with the playful "I Met a Girl".
Gavin Christopher, better known for his days leading "Rufus", sings three numbers here, beginning with "Too Much Cool", a sophisticated funk number co-written by Conte. Christopher also delivers top-notch performances on both the New Orleans-flavored "Mojo Mombo" where saxophonist Michael Acosta steps into the spotlight for a winning performance, and there's "Room At the Top", a super-charged number steeped in the Tower of Power tradition.
Bruce recruited additional TOP alumni for the project, including Bobby Kimball, the Grammy Award-winning vocalist from Toto, who lends his talents the the impassioned "Chasin' The Blues". Bassist, singer, songwriter Tim Scott adds another original to the track list with his "Just Won't Act Right", and Ellis Hall, who's impressive resume includes several motion pictures plus keyboard work on Kenny G's "Duotones", takes the lead on "Nowhere to Go". Rounding things out is a tight ensemble led by keyboardist and engineer Hans Zermuelhen. In all, Bruce Conte and friends dish up an exciting and original recording that is sure to please.