Canned Heat Returns with First New Album in 15 Years: “Finyl Vinyl” Marks a Milestone in Blues Rock History

Canned Heat's 2024 Tour Plans Hint at Continued Relevance in the Music Industry...

Los Angeles, 1965: Blues enthusiasts Alan “Blind Owl” Wilson (1943-1970) and Bob “The Bear” Hite (1943-1981) together with like-minded musicians found Canned Heat. They name the band after the title of a 1928 song by bluesman Tommy Johnson about a fuel containing methyl alcohol, also referred to as “canned heat”, which is misused by alcoholics as a substitute drug. In 1967 drummer Adolfo “Fito” de la Parra who is still a member today joins Canned Heat, while otherwise the band has seen a lot of personnel turnover in the course of its history. One year later Canned Heat’s successful hit single “On The Road Again” makes them popular worldwide. Following this chart success they have further hits with “Going Up The Country” (1968) and “Let’s Work Together” (1970). In August 1969 Canned Heat are part of the line-up of the legendary “Woodstock Music & Art Fair”.

Apart from band albums such as their eponymous debut LP from 1967 or “Boogie With Canned Heat” from the following year they are featured on collaborations with genre greats such as John Lee Hooker (“Hooker ’n Heat”, 1971), Clarence “Gatemouth” Brown (“Gate’s On The Heat”, 1973) or Memphis Slim (“Memphis Heat”, 1974). Fast forward to the present: Nearly 60 years after the band was founded a new studio album will be released by Ruf Records on CD and LP in April 2024. Recorded in Burbank, California, long serving drummer Fito de la Parra was joined in the studio by the members of the band’s current line-up, i.e. guitarist, keyboard player and singer Jimmy Vivino, harper and singer Dale Spalding and Richard “Rick” Reed who succeeded long-time bass player Larry “The Mole” Taylor after his death in 2019. Another musician that can be heard on the album is blues rocker Joe Bonamassa who makes a guest appearance as lead guitarist on “So Sad (The World’s In A Tangle)”; Canned Heat first recorded this song for their 1970 album “Future Blues” with founding members Alan Wilson and Bob Hite still around and a live version can be found on their 2015 CD/DVD set from Ruf’s “Songs From The Road” series.

Moreover the early days of the band’s history are reflected in the song “Blind Owl”, a homage to Alan Wilson which refers to his nickname owing to an extreme nearsightedness. The song was written by Californian singer-songwriter Dave Alvin who is featured as a guest guitarist and singer here. Among the other tracks there are three compositions each by Jimmy Vivino (“One Last Boogie”, “Goin’ To Heaven [In A Pontiac]” and “When You’re 69”) and Dale Spalding (“Tease Me”, “You’re The One” and “Independence Day”). Another track, “East West Boogie”, presents an unusual musical mix with the oriental sounds of the “Theme from Tehran”, a US TV show, combined with a typical Canned Heat boogie groove. So, is this the grand finale of a long lasting recording career with which Canned Heat say their goodbye to showbiz? First of all the album title seems to point in that direction, since “Finyl Vinyl” can of course be read as “final vinyl”. Then there is the opener, Vivino’s “One Last Boogie”, pointing in the same direction. And last, but not least another of his songs, the slowblues “When You’re 69”, deals with an age that makes you rather think of retirement than further activities. On the other hand the tour plan on the band’s homepage is already filled with first dates for 20242024, not just in the US but also in Europe later this year.

cannedheatmusic.com

 

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HEILUNG’S LIVE SPECTACLE AT THE RIVERSIDE THEATER IN MILWAUKEE, WI ON SAT, APRIL 20TH, 2024: AN IMMERSIVE JOURNEY OF SOUND, STORY, AND SPIRIT

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