Projections – The Blues Project (1966)


Projections is the second album by American blues rock band The Blues Project. Produced by Tom Wilson and released by Verve/Folkways in November 1966, the album was their first studio release and examined a more rock-based sound. Jim Marshall was credited as the photographer of the album cover. Soon after the release of this album, Al Kooper left the band in the spring of 1967 to form Blood, Sweat & Tears. Keyboardist and vocalist Al Kooper was the most prominent member of the band, having recently played on Bob Dylan‘s seminal album Highway 61 Revisited. However, Projections was very much a group effort, developing the band’s unique style that drew upon blues, jazz, folk, soul, and psychedelic influences. According to Danny Kalb, the record company was not interested in the band’s artistic merit and ‘just wanted to make a few bucks’. The band was disappointed by this lack of creative input and did not see the album cover or hear the mix until the record was released. Kooper’s energetic arrangement of ‘I Can’t Keep From Crying’ incorporated psychedelic and gospel elements. ‘Steve’s Song’, the first song ever written by singer/guitarist Steve Katz, was intended to be titled “September Fifth”, but a miscommunication between MGM Records and the band’s manager resulted in the generic title used for the release. It features a baroque introduction featuring flute playing from Andy Kulberg, and Kooper on the Ondioline. Comparing ‘You Can’t Catch Me’ as recorded with Chuck Berry’s original lyrics reveals that singer/guitarist Danny Kalb initially skips the second stanza. … ‘Two Trains Running’ was Danny Kalb’s tribute to Muddy Waters, one of the band’s biggest influences. This 11-minute rendition is significantly different from the original version and was developed as the band played it live. … ‘Wake Me, Shake Me” came from a traditional gospel song and was a vehicle for improvisation that the band often used to close their live shows. …”
Wikipedia
50 Years Ago: The Blues Project Release Their Tour de Force (Video)
Discogs (Video)
YouTube: The Blues Project – Projections (1966) 9 videos

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