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The Brightest Smile In Town

  out of 4 Music Review: The Brightest Smile In Town

Artist: Dr. John
Genre: R&B
Release Date: August 1989

Review by Keith "MuzikMan" Hannaleck
No rating supplied

Dr. John's (Mac Rebennack) roots and down home feel garnered the respect of his peers and music fans worldwide. His album "The Brightest Smile In Town", which was released in 1983, featured the Cajun piano player walking both sides of the musical street. The songs are a split between instrumentals and vocal style renderings of standards and originals, giving you an equal balance of the Dr.'s distinct vocal style and inimitable piano voyages.

The album opens with "Saddled The Cow." The Dr. gets down to some serious rhythm and blues and sings like he is taking a stroll in the country, while the down-on-the-farm jaunt builds up a good head of steam and turns into a Bourbon Street boogie. "Boxcar Boogie" is a real rollicking honky-tonk saloon toe tapper. You can see, touch, smell, and feel the streets of New Orleans when the Dr. plays his music. This is the kind of song that has become Dr. John's signature. Although his voice is instantly identifiable, it's his adroitness on the piano keys that clearly define his sound and his musical roots. As he closes out his colorful musical pageantry, he remembers from whence he came and closes the curtain in style with an instrumental enchanter entitled "Suite Home New Orleans."

There is only one Dr. John, and the Classic Records' 24/96 Master Tape Sound gives the music a rebirth with a pristine and clean sound, making it a rightful tribute to such a fine artist.

1. Saddled the Cow (Gordon) - 2:46
2. Boxcar Boogie (Doctor John) - 5:13
3. The Brightest Smile in Town (Charles/Devorzon/Sherman) - 3:10
4. Waiting for a Train (Rodgers) - 3:19
5. Monkey Puzzle (Black) - 4:39
6. Touro Infirmary (Traditional) - 4:44
7. Medley: Just A Closer Walk With Thee/Didn't He Ramble (Handy/Traditional) - 6:29
8. Average Kind of Guy (Doctor John/Pomus) - 3:31
9. Pretty Libby (Doctor John) - 3:11
10. Marie Laveau (Gurley) - 3:54
11. Come Rain or Come Shine (Arlen/Mercer) - 4:41
12. Sweet Home New Orleans (Doctor John) - 3:50



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