'A Blue Thing,' Tom Rigney, Fiddle
With Bob Brozman, Anthony Paule, Roy Rogers, Danny Caron, and Jerry Cortez, guitars; Norton Buffalo, harmonica; John R. Burr, organ; and Caroline Dahl, piano. (Parhelion)
Tom Rigney is a fixture on the San Francisco Bay Area roots-music scene. This talented fiddler has been the driving force behind such popular local trad and Cajun bands as Back in the Saddle, Queen Ida & Her Bon Temps Zydeco Band, the Sundogs, and most recently Flambeau. This outing pairs him with his Flambeau rhythm section and some of the region's top blues players for an engaging set of originals and standards that run the gamut from barnstorming powerhouse blues to gentle Western swing to a wistful version of "Wayfaring Stranger." It's a mixed bag of sound, all with a blue hue, that may leave you wishing he'd settle in to a single groove for an entire album. But Rigney adds lots of personal touches along the way (like the haunting Middle Eastern intro to "House of the Rising Sun").