This album bills itself as the “Sound of Asbury Park.” Bingo. Guitarist Danny Petroni has done the Garden State proud. Somewhere “The Boss” is smiling. Somewhere “Miami Steve” is smiling. Somewhere “Southside Johnny” is smiling. And blues-loving jazz heads everywhere will be smiling, too, when they hear this disc. Petroni created this project to provide a little bit of work for the musicians, engineers and studios of Asbury Park that suffered so badly in the wake of Hurricane Sandy. He assembled a star-studded New Jersey cast to perform here—from Gary Oleyar on violin and Gene Boccia on bass to Dave Halpern and John Allen on drums and many more. It’s an eclectic blues stew with a sharp jazz edge. At the centerpiece of this excellent recording is a true surprise for jazz fans. Ku-umba Frank Lacy adds deep, cool vocals—not to mention amazing horn arrangements that compete with the best of the Miami Horns. The result is one of my favorite albums of the year, so far. “I’ve Seen Everything” swings hard as a hysterical opening tune. The next track, “Tastes Like Chicken,” ain’t far behind! “I’ve Changed My Ways” slides in as a beautiful ballad. “Peanut Butter & Jelly” delivers. “Mouse In The House” offers a sad look at the extermination business of love. And Petroni’s beautiful, reverb-filled “Diminishing Returns” offers a touching conclusion to this 10-song set. Sandy couldn’t take these guys out. It just spurred their artistry. They deserve a few minutes of your attention. Check them out.
BY FRANK ALKYER DownBeat Magazine Editors Pick/Review
Guitarist Danny Petroni has gone back in a way to some of the jump-blues and humor of Louis Jordan of the late swing era and created his own version of it--not an imitation, not a tribute, but an analog creation of his own. This on The Blue Project (self-released).
It's a big band doing goofy-serious lyrics blues that feature some nice guitar wielding from Danny and Frank Ku-umba Lacy on vocals, trombone and something called the "flumpet"! There is some metal heat from Danny and a general high-spirits over-the-topness going on.
It may not change the world but it gives you a rooted ultra-today jazz-rock take on it all.
No, nothing bad to say to that. And Danny dedicates the album to all who struggle to get it back together in the NY-Metro-Jersey-Long-Island Hurricane Sandy debacle. That story still isn't over. The struggle keeps on going on. So thanks to Danny!
Posted by Grego Applegate Edwards gapplegateguitar.blogspot.com/2014/04/the-blue-project-danny-petroni-blue.html
As guitarist Danny Petroni explains it, The Blue Project, his band and its self-titled first release, began as a reaction to hurricane Sandy. Work for Jersey Shore musicians was sparse after Sandy’s devastation: “Gigs cancelled, venues damaged, all music productions stopped in the immediate area.” Petroni’s idea was to create some work for local musicians with a locally produced blues record using his own original compositions. “The Danny Petroni Blue Project was born.”
“The whole package, the combination of horns and vocals, reminds me of the vibe of Joe Turner, the Boss of the Blues.”
By Jack Goodstein blogcritics.org/music-review-the-danny-petroni-blue-project-the-blue-project/
Here's one of those wonderful nutty mash up records that throws Louie Prima and Louie Jordan into the mixmaster with blues, jump blues, primal rock, jazz and who knows what else. Done as a labor of love by a bunch of Jersey cats that weren't going to let the damage from Hurricane Sandy keep them down, this is what you get when pros know how far they can push things and then push a little more. Loaded with well played sounds you love all strung together like you never heard them before, this is must listening for when you finally realize you're not too cool for school. Check it out.”
-CHRIS SPECTOR, Midwest record
“Any way you describe it this is simply fine down home blues. A more invigorating entry to a new CD could hardly be imagined.”
-Grady Harp CD Review: Amazon
“Mouse in the House - Awesome marriage of masterful blues with fantastic horns!!! There aren't enough songs like this on the radio anymore. Ear candy for any Blues fan!!!!”
“God of War - Classic rock opus from a set of old school musicians out of the BSW or Chicago mold. A touch of Zappa is included as well with the R&B style singer. Actually there are great horn charts, pro rhythm ensemble plus lots of 'stunt ' guitar taking dives & spins a la Vai or Frank himself.”
“Requiem for a Working Man - intriguing start with interesting choice of instrumentation. It has a country/jaz chill out feel to it maybe a little gospel thrown in there too. Great soulful vocals, superb tones. It reminds me of Otis redding but it has a more modern edge. vintage/ retro revival. This type of piece is currently in style with the trend of skinny jeans and roughed up shoes. It has a great atmosphere”
released 11 January 2014
Danny Petroni - Electric Guitars, Acoustic Guitars, Frank Lacy - Lead Vocals/Trombone/Flumpet , Gary Oleyar – Violin, Gene Boccia - Bass , Calvin Jones - Upright bass on (Requiem for a Working man) , John Drymon -, Piano/Hammond B3 Organ, Steve Kramer - Piano on “Cracker Jack”, “Peanut Butter & Jelly”, John P Allen - Drums , Dave Halpern- Drums on (Mouse in the House)
Female Vocals, Jo Wymer on (I Changed my Ways) Backup Vocals on (Looking Good)
Backup Vocals on (God of War, Peanut Butter & Jelly, Requiem for a Working man)
Layonne Holmes, Ricky Collins, Katrina Harper
Produce& Engineer by : John P Allen
Studio 609, 72 Walnut St, Toms River, NJ 08753
Mixing Engineer Gary Oleyar
Sonoma Beach Studio, 141 Clark, NJ
Senior Master Engineer Tom Ruff
AsburyMedia, 305 Bond St, Asbury Park, NJ
Photos Dennis Czund
CD Manufacturing-Disc Makers
Music/Words/Arrangements by Danny Petroni
Horn Arrangements /instrumentation by Frank Lacy
All Words/Music by Danny Petroni ©Copyright 2014
1001 2nd Ave 104,Asbury Park, NJ
Special Thanks: Mindy Petroni for all her support, Ryan Petroni,John Bernyk, Tom Passarella, Rosemary Conte, Gene Boccia and my KickStarter backers. My dear friend and great artist/musican/composer/arranger - Frank Lacy. All my friends, the city of Asbury Park and the venues that let me test our these tunes before they where ready for prime time. Gary Oleyar, John (the Crul) Allen, Tom Ruff, and all the musicians who made my gigs, and studio session.