The new live video for “Hurtin’ In The Mornin’” is a showcase for guitarist/singer Jim Kahr that breathes even more fire into the song than the studio version from his new album, Keepin’ It Hot (via ZYX/Peppercake). Working his patented style to full effect, the song smokes and sizzles across the blues landscape.
Leading his ever-so-tight band, Kahr stretches things in just the right places, while keeping everything firmly nestled in the pocket, to deliver a performance that shows a master bandleader at work. But that shouldn’t come as a surprise considering his five-decade resume includes years of work with legends like Jimmy Rogers, Bobby ‘Blue’ Bland, John Lee Hooker and more. All that accumulated knowledge has given Kahr an unparalleled command of style and innate blues sense.
“I”m really proud of this record and these songs,” he notes, “and bringing them to life in front of an audience always offers the opportunity to add new dimensions to them. This is my 12th album, and I was just as excited to make this record as I was to do my first back in 1978!” Recorded and produced by the iconic Jim Gaines (SRV, Santana, Huey Lewis, etc… ) at the equally iconic Ardent Studios in Memphis, Kahr’s songwriting and playing is at its best as the tracks explore a myriad of moods and grooves all woven together by the common thread of the blues.
“The way this album came together was almost magical. I reached out to Jim (on a reference from someone else I knew), and he thought my style fit his production style but he also said he really didn’t have time. He said, ‘I have a two-week window, that’s it.’ So I went for it. He arranged everything, got all the top Memphis guys. We went into Ardent (which was an experience itself because that’s such an important studio), I met the band, pretty much plugged in and kicked it out. We did everything in those two weeks; recording, mixing, all of it. Everything just clicked.”
Keepin’ It Hot is the sound of an artist, and a band, firing on all cylinders. And “Hurtin’ In The Mornin” is a definitive statement that Jim Kahr is still at the top of his game and will be for decades to come.