Steve Keenan and Fat Baby Jake play like Stevie Ray Vaughan


It’s great to finally have a CD out from local blues rock trio Steve Keenan  and Fat Baby Jake. Granted, the new, six track CD, ‘Better than Gold’ which was recorded in James Oldenburg’s GPS studio, isn’t the current incarnation of the band including Shane Love and Geoff Stuckey, but instead includes the ‘classic’ lineup of bassist David Popovitch and drummer Darwin Romanchuk.
As typical of guitarists who come from what I’m going to start calling the Paul Kype School of the Blues (people who have played with Paul Kype and Texas Flood) including Leah Marie King, Keenan, and Greg Gomola) there is a lot of Stevie Ray Vaughan influence.

Vaughan’s influence is especially prevalent on ‘Don’t Lead Me On, ’ which  sounds similar to‘The House is Rocking.’ King’s voice also sounds a lot like early Colin James. In addition to straight ahead blues rock like the outstanding uptempo ‘Don’t Lead Me On’ and ‘Whiskey Drinking Blues,’ there are also quite a few slower blues numbers  ‘Lucky One’ and ‘No Place to Hide.’

But there is also a strong classic rock influence on ‘Something New,’ another excellent track which would be at home on the modern classic rock airwaves and definitely should. The title track, ‘Better than Gold,’ is a six minute long slower number along the lines of old school southern rock like Lynard Skynard.
Keenan is also a fine fiddler, but there isn’t a a fiddle to be found here, just the blues and pretty good, tasteful upbeat and catchy blues at that.

— by Richard Amery, L.A. Beat Editor
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CD: Better than Gold
Band: Steve Keenan and Fat Baby Jake
Genre: Blues/ blues rock
Record Label: Indie