A Fool to Care

A Fool to Care

by Boz ScaggsBoz Scaggs


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Boz Scaggs follows 2013's killer Memphis with a second Tennessee album. A Fool to Care was recorded over four days with producer/drummer Steve Jordan and a core band of guitarist Ray Parker, Jr. and bassist Willie Weeks at Nashville's Blackbird Studio. These 12 songs are primarily covers that reflect various sources, the most prevalent among them being R&B and soul. The band is augmented occasionally with strings, horns, and Music City luminaries including guitarists Reggie Young and Al Anderson and pedal steel boss Paul Franklin. Simply put, there is no filler here -- virtually every song is a highlight. The opener is a swaggering, horn-drenched presentation of Dorothy LaBostrie and McKinley Millet's "Rich Woman." Scaggs' reading is inspired by Li'l Millet & His Creoles' 1955 version more than Canned Heat's or Robert Plant and Alison Krauss'. The title track was cut as a country swing tune by author Ted Daffan in 1940. Scaggs reads it through the New Orleans R&B of Fats Domino. And speaking of NOLA, Bobby Charles and Rick Danko's "Small Town Talk" is executed flawlessly with slippery breaks by Jordan and a simmering B-3 by Jim Cox. "Hell to Pay" is an original, a badass blues driven by Weeks' funky upright bass. Sung in duet with Bonnie Raitt (who also plays mean slide here), Scaggs takes an all too rare guitar solo. "Last Tango on 16th Street" melds Carlos Gardel, West Coast jazz, and Brechtian drama. Scaggs' delivery is full of restrained empathy, not pity. His version of Richard Hawley's otherworldly waltz "There's a Storm a Comin'" features Franklin's pedal steel crying amid accordion, bass, bump organ, and B-3. It is an elegant outlier here. Scaggs offers Curtis Mayfield's "I'm So Proud" with an expressive falsetto that would make the composer proud. Huey P. Smith's 1958 classic "High Blood Pressure" is rendered raw, ragged, and raucous. That shimmering falsetto returns to Memphis in a grooving version of Al Green's "Full of Fire" before slipping toward smooth Philly soul with a gorgeous take on the Spinners' 1974 classic "Love Don't Love Nobody." But Scaggs saves the very best for last. He teams with Lucinda Williams for Richard Manuel's (the Band) "Whispering Pines." Franklin's steel returns in a breezy, warm, atmospheric arrangement that relies on the depth in Jordan's floor tom-toms. The contrast between Williams' bluesy, grainy contralto and Scaggs' soul-basted croon underscores the wrenching heartbreak in the lyric. Ultimately, A Fool to Care is not only a companion to Memphis, but also to 1997's Come on Home and his earliest (pre-Silk Degrees) sides. Scaggs' voice is unmarked by time. Whether singing new or old songs, he presents them in the moment as living, breathing entities. He remains a song interpreter who has few -- if any -- peers.

Product Details

Release Date: 03/31/2015
Label: 429 Records
UPC: 0795041603227
catalogNumber: 16032
Rank: 5560

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Boz Scaggs   Primary Artist,Acoustic Guitar,Electric Guitar,Rhythm Guitar,Vocals
Anderson   Guitar
Bonnie Raitt   Vocals,Slide Guitar
Lucinda Williams   Vocals
David Angell   Violin
Ben Cauley   Trumpet
Jim Cox   Piano,Vibes,Pump Organ,Wurlitzer,Hammond B3
David Davidson   Violin
Paul Franklin   Steel Guitar
Jack Hale   Trombone
Jim Hoke   Accordion,Bass Clarinet,Alto Flute,Baritone Saxophone,Tenor Saxophone,Vibes,Woodwind
Jim Horn   Baritone Saxophone
Tony Lindsay   Background Vocals
Ray Parker   Acoustic Guitar,Electric Guitar,Rhythm Guitar
Fred Ross   Background Vocals
Willie Weeks   Bass
Kristin Wilkinson   Viola
Reggie Young   Guitar
Wei Tsun Chang   Violin
Monisa Angell   Viola
Eric Crystal   Piano,Alto Saxophone,Tenor Saxophone
Steve Jordan   Percussion,Drums,Background Vocals
Sari Reist   Cello
Seth Asarnow   Bandoneon,Pump Organ
Jr. Quentin Ware   Trumpet
Doug Rowan   Alto Saxophone,Baritone Saxophone,Tenor Saxophone
Lannie McMillan   Tenor Saxophone
Conesha Monet Owens   Background Vocals
Alicia Enstrom   Violin
Anthony La Merchina   Cello

Technical Credits

Green   Composer
Curtis Mayfield   Composer
Robbie Robertson   Composer
Boz Scaggs   Composer
Rick Danko   Composer
Willie Mitchell   Composer
Niko Bolas   Engineer
Mabon "Teenie" Hodges   Composer
Jim Hoke   Woodwind Arrangement
Richard Manuel   Composer
Charles Simmons   Composer
Lester Snell   Horn Arrangements,String Arrangements,String Conductor
Ted Daffan   Composer
Jeri Heiden   Art Direction
Clifford Carter   Atmosphere
Robert Guidry   Composer
Dorothy LaBostrie   Composer
Steve Jordan   Producer,Horn Conductor
J. Michael Rodriguez   Engineer
Richard Hawley   Composer
Jack "Applejack" Walroth   Composer
Nick Steinhardt   Art Direction
Huey P. Smith   Composer
Joseph Jefferson   Composer
Chris Tabarez   Engineer,Logistics
McKinley Millet   Composer

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