Nico Wayne Toussaint and the Transatlantic Blues Band – Transatlantic Live
Nico Wayne Toussaint and the Transatlantic Blues Band have just wrapped up their third U.S. tour, which had four stops in Colorado alone. Nico Wayne Toussaint? Isn’t that French? I know what you’re thinking, I was thinking the same thing, “how good can a blues band from France really be?” Don’t let that stop you from checking out the good old-fashioned Chicago-style blues album “Transatlantic Live.”
These guys are the real deal. Playing regularly since 1993, Nico cites his major musical influences as Muddy Waters, James Cotton and Jimmy Reed, to name a few. And it comes through in his songs. Not only does he sing but he also plays the harmonica. That’s when the blues really starts pouring out of him. His harmonica playing is mesmerizing, almost haunting. It’s hard to believe you can get that much out of such a tiny instrument, but he wrings out every last drop of harmony possible. He even won the 2005 France Blues Trophies “Harmonica Player of the Year” award.
The backing band is Mudzilla, but goes by Transatlantic Blues Band when playing with Nico. There is also a killer horn section, the “Crazy Horns,” that add much depth to the performances.
This album was released in 2004, but with this current U.S. tour and another album on the way in 2007, it’s worth taking another look. “Transatlantic Live” is two discs, 27 tracks and was recorded live in France and Boston, Mass. This format works well for these guys and captures the true essence of their abilities more than a studio album ever could. For more information on Nico and the rest of the band check out their website (nwtoussaint.com).
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