LIl’ Band O’ Gold – Plays Fats

Antoine “Fats” Domino is a living legend. The songs he has recorded and co-written are an Americana jukebox of jewels. Think about these titles for a moment: Blue Monday, All By Myself, Ain’t That A Shame, Blueberry Hill. That is just a handfll of his songs that he took to #1 in the US R&B charts back in the day. And now, having just turned 84, a chance meeting inspired the Louisiana super group, Lil’ Band O’ Gold to gather up some friends and pay tribute to Mr Domino on their latest release Plays Fats.

This is a glittering collection of talent making this music. Lil’ Band O’ Gold by themselves make some of the most stunning and real American Swamp Pop that you can imagine.The duel saxophones of Pat Breaux and Dickie Landry , CC Adcock on guitar, Steve Riley on accordion, the legendary Warren Storm on drums and the talented David Egan on keys could record these songs instrumentally and you would still feel the love and energy. But CC, Steve, David and the fabulous Warren Storm can all sing and their vocals are just joyful throughout these songs. Warren makes Blue Monday and 4 Winds Blow his own and for someone well into his 70s he displays that age is no barrier to making grand music.

To put it mildly this is a group many people want to play and sing with. Besides the talent, they bring a joy that comes across in spades live and you can sense it even within these recordings. Listen to CC take his lead vocal on Poor Me and you know this is a band playing for the love of the music. The band bring along a few guests and they are not too shabby. Lucinda Williams and Ani Difranco rock out on I’m Ready; a couple of Aussies come along for the ride with Tim Rogers doing a wonderful job with I’m Walkin’ that growls along and Jimmy Barnes takes on Fat’s Ain’t That A Shame which needs to be heard for you to appreciate Mr Barnes in a different light.

There is one other guest artist who seems to be surrounding himself with Americana musicians quite a bit at the moment. From Band Of Joy and his Grammy Award winning record with Alison Krauss, Robert Plant has found his groove. He has been sighted on stage with Lil Band O’ Gold in the US and here he takes on the Cajun flecked It Keeps Raining and the slightly funkier I’ve Been Around. Robert has always loved this music and his vocals are like a well worn pair of cowboy boots on the feet of this outfit.

Lil Band O’ Gold should be selling millions of records and playing to thousands of people on any night they grace the stage. These songs bring home the joy and wealth of talent that Fats Domino gave us and there’s no one better to make these songs new again but this roster of artists. This is a lil’ bit of gold.