George Thorogood; who draws his inspiration from Elmore James, Hound Dog Taylor, and Chuck Berry, never earned much respect from blues purists, but he became a popular favourite in the early '80s through repeated exposure on FM radio and the arena rock circuit. Thorogood's music was always loud, simple, and direct - his riffs and licks were taken straight out of '50s Chicago blues and rock & roll - but his formulaic approach helped him gain a rather large audience in the '80s, when his albums regularly went gold. Now we are delighted that the legendary Blues guitarist/vocalist is releasing his first ever solo album ‘Party Of One’.
Famous for his hard driving powerful rock and blues, and his seminal hits including “One Bourbon, One Scotch, One Beer,” and “Bad To The Bone,” the traditional classics and modern blues he’s chosen for his latest album show a range Thorogood is rarely known for. Produced by Grammy-winning Jim Gaines, the record features 14 covers of traditional blues, classics and modern blues songs. Some of these tracks include Hank Williams’ “Pictures From Life’s Other Side,” The Rolling Stones’ “No Expectations” and John Lee Hooker’s “One Bourbon, One Scotch, One Beer.”
“I think this is a project that’s long overdue. Maybe it should have been the very first album I ever made. After playing with the band for all these years, I had to kind of reverse my hands and my head in order to do this thing justice.” Thorogood explained, “But I think Destroyers fans – and hardcore blues fans, too – are ready for the unexpected. My whole career, I’ve always said, ‘Just give them what you are, and they’re either going to dig it or not.’ This record is what I was, what I am, and what I always will be.”
The heartfelt “Soft Spot’ (Gary Nicholson) or ‘Pictures From The Other Side Of Life” (Hank Williams) ring clear with a kindness in their melancholy you don’t expect from the hard driving Destroyer. His fans will be happy to know his Willie Dixon and Johnny Lee Hooker classics and other blues standards have the hard charging signature style he’s known for. But the acoustic choices on many pieces, like “No Expectations” (Rolling Stones) and “Tallahassee Women” (John Hammond Jr.) are an unexpected pleasure and make these songs feel unusually intimate, as if you had the good luck to be sitting next to Thorogood at home while he pulled out his guitar in a chair beside you to lament his fate.
“It didn’t start that way,” he says. “There was talk for years of doing a solo or acoustic record, but I just never got around to it,“ Thorogood has sold more than 15 million records world wide, and released 16 studio albums which include six gold and two platinum discs. “As the years went on I finally got to the spot where I thought, well I’ve pretty much done everything I wanted to do, and this solo acoustic record was still on my list.”