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Mooney stakes out his own territory

By John Mooney

Domino Records; 1992

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This review first appeared in the Winter 1993 edition of Blues Revue Quarterly magazine (now Blues Revue).

After a string of albums in which he moved from traditional delta blues to New Orleans gumbo, John Mooney appears to have finally found his own musical voice. And a fine voice it is. No more need for tribute albums: this latest album, "Testimony," is a rich, musical and fun collection of blues and blues-tinged rock songs featuring Mooney's always strong guitar work and new-found confidence as a vocalist. (His singing on this album sounds much like Eric Clapton's.)

"Testimony" features nearly a dozen Mooney originals, and a handful of tasteful covers (Son House's "Levee Camp Moan," Professor Longhair's "Hey Now Baby" and "In the Night," and Robert Johnson's "Lil' Queen O' Spades").

Backed by one of the funkiest bass masters around, George Porter, and the very capable John Vidocovich on drums, and joined by Dr. John (Mac Rebennack) and Ivan Neville on piano, Mooney turns in his best recorded performance yet. "Testimony" combines the technical prowess that has earned him a loyal following with a larger musical vision of taste and imagination that is likely to bring him wider recognition.