From the name alone, there’s no mistaking what you’re getting when it comes to the Second Hand Blues Band — and that’s blues, blues and more blues. Led by the extremely talented longtime local blues guitarist and vocalist Ashford Gordon, SHBB knows what type of band it is. It tackles the blues and all sub-genres on its new 11-song release. Lyrically, the songwriting is your standard subject matter: broken hearts and lost love. The musicianship is incredibly solid. The rhythm section is tight with Walter Cheeseman on drums, John Lombardo on guitar and Jimmy Wilson on bass; and of course there are blazing guitar solos galore. The highlight of the record, at least for local music fans, is “Out on the Pier.” There haven’t been many songs written about the Ventura area or the music scene itself, but this one actually name-checks local musicians, including a man who deserves to be acknowledged in song, Hippie Mark. It’s a must-hear track for local music fans, and the hometown slant aside, it shows the band at its most rocking.
Bottom line: If you like the blues, you will love this record. Not a big blues fan? This probably isn’t the record to change your opinion. But that’s ok. Chances are there will be a song about it on the next Second Hand Blues Band release, “Baby, I Got the Blues . . . ’Cause You Don’t Like the Blues.”
Available at www.reverbnation.com/secondhandbluesband.