The Mess Is On counts as Danny “Mudcat” Dudeck’s fifth CD. Dudeck, a great slide guitarist serves on the Board of Directors as a vital musical contributor to the nonprofit organization Music Maker, an establishment dedicated to assisting poor southern blues musicians. This new collection ranks as Dudeck’s best.
His solo ability remains a forte, but Dudeck’s songs sound fleshed out with a band on this release. These tunes were recorded in Atlanta with a wide assembly of talented musicians including Eddie Tigner, who played with Elmore James in the 50’s, and performed with the re-formed legendary group the Ink Spots.
These songs, like most of Dudeck’s music, shine a positive light. Over the years, Dudeck’s morphed into a seasoned veteran. Usually, he never strays far from barrelhouse blues but The Mess Is On contains an astral brass section that provides another sonic dimension to Dudeck’s blues framework. The colorful instrumentations call to mind an amalgamation of 30’s jazz, barrelhouse blues, and ‘brassafied’ country.
Dudeck wrote 14 tracks on the CD. “Garden Mouse”, a reggae ditty, stands as a strong number he penned with Music Maker legend Cora Mae Bryant. Dudeck also covers Atlanta bluesman Frank Edwards’ “Got To Get Together”.
The CD is separated into Part 1 and Part 2. The title track might possibly one of his finest tunes. Dudeck does not show off his slide guitar prowess as much on this release, but relies on each instrument to serve the music. Other highlights on this essential Mudcat disc include Caribbean flavored “Te Amo Loco”, a soul-tinged “My Feet Hurt”, and the Crescent City hymn “When the Veil is Lifted”.
If nothing else, The Mess Is On represents a great Friday night soundtrack…there’s something about this music that makes you want to move your feet…