By Stephen Rose
Brad Wilson is a California-based blues guitarist currently touring up and down the West Coast in support of his new album “Blues Magic.” In concert, he is a charismatic performer who easily engages his audience and develops a quick repertoire with his fans encouraging them to sing, dance, party, have fun and join in the festivities at his shows.
Brad has released 15 albums in total, including his latest offering “Blues Magic.” On this contemporary blues recording he easily mixes styles including slow blues, hard-driving rockers, soulful ballads, mainstream Americana, and acoustic folk.
Standout songs on the album include the jazzy title track “Blues Magic;” the late-night blues of “My One Desire;” the infectious dance-beat of “Hot Stuff;” and the slow burner “I’m Still Breathin’.”
Other highlights include the closing track “Wintergreen,” an acoustic folk tune reminiscent of David Crosby’s dissonant experiments with open tunings on early CSN albums; “The Road Back To You,” an explosive rocker where Brad cuts loose and give his band a high-energy workout; and “Roll With Me,” a hard-driving rhythm rocker similar in style to many of Keith Richard’s classic hits from the Rolling Stones’ golden era.
Produced and mixed by Grammy winner Francis Buckley, Blues Magic is a well-crafted album throughout with all original compositions, tight arrangements and inspired performances.
[ Francis Buckley won a Grammy Award in 1996 for Best Engineered Album “Q’s Jook Joint” with Quincy Jones.]
Brad Wilson’s distinguishing characteristic is the distinctive tone he gets from his custom Stratocaster built by Performance Guitars in Los Angeles. The guitar’s sound is a cross between Peter Green’s out-of-phase humbuckers on early Fleetwood Mac albums, and the stinging bite of Carlos Santana’s Boogie overdrive that wowed the crowds at Woodstock. He is also gifted at changing the arrangements on covers of common blues and rock standards making these songs into his own.
His first big break came when horror-director John Carpenter used his song “Teaser” in the soundtrack to the film “Vampires.” Brad received a Saturn award for that song, then contributed music to the soundtrack of Carpenter’s next film “Ghosts of Mars,” including the instrumental track “Can’t Let You Go.”
He also provided music for the NBC soap opera “Passions;” and Regis & Kelly played his song “House Of Love” on their ABC morning show.
As a session guitarist for the Robb Brothers at LA’s Cherokee Studios, Brad Wilson played rhythm and lead on Robert Bradley’s CD “Still Loving You.”
Brad Wilson has won the “Best Songwriter” award at the All Access Music Awards in Los Angeles, and has won the “Best Blues Band” award three times at LA’s Rock City News Awards.
Heat Wave (Great Day Television, June 2011)
Ballad of John Lee (Great Day Television, June 2011)
Blues Magic (Great Day In Fresno, August 2010)
Got The Feeling (Fresno Television, March 2010)
Cool Running (Fresno Television, March 2010)
She Moves Me (Cozy’s, February 2008)
Got The Feeling (Cozy’s, February 2008)
Stormy Monday Blues (Cozy’s, February 2008)
Something Going On (Cozy’s, February 2008)
Pride & Joy (Cozy’s, February 2008)
Ken Nordin Interview (Valley Music Television, December 2008)
Home (Valley Music Television, December 2008)
Cool Running (Valley Music Television, December 2008)
She Moves Me (Gilroy Garlic Festival, July 28, 2012)