Red West & Hot Rhythm!
Red West Production RWP 04

This is the first solo album from Jörgen Red Westman. Jörgen is the previous leader of the famous Rockabilly trio The Buckshots, and before that power-pop-punk band Psychotic Youth.

He has done 14 albums since 1985, but never did a solo album. The Buckshots got a bit messy at the end so they deciced to stop. Jörgen did all the work for The Buckshots and thought "If I must do all the work for the band, why not go solo?" And so he did. Jörgen is a great writer, and as usual he wrote all 15 songs on this new album. For this particular album he recorded 42 tracks of which 22 are covers and half of them are sung by his wife, Mary West. Jörgen isn't sure if he will make a digital release of all the other recordings this autumn. Well, let's hope he does...

Let me tell you the story behind Jörgen Red Westman from the beginning:
When Jörgen was five years old, he asked his grandmother to buy him an Elvis Presley album called The Rockin' Days. After hearing this album, he knew 50's and 60's music was the music for little Jörgen! Somewhere in the north of Sweden, in a very small town, a teenager (Jörgen) started the band Psychotic Youth, and recorded a couple of singles and two albums containing Rockabilly and sixties Punk before he moved to Gothenburg. In Gothenburg Jörgen started the Rockabilly band "Lord and his Rockabilly Deciples". This was in 1987. This band made one single, but was lost on the way to the pressings and so this was never released. The band was so disappointed about the lost tape that they broke up. In 1988 Jörgen restarted the Psychotic Youth, this time as a Surf--Punk-Powerpop band. This time it got big and they toured all over Europe until 1999. In 2003 Gustaf (drummer of The Buckshots) called out of the blue and screamed that he and Jörgen must start a band. Jörgen demanded that Peter Brylde must join. Peter was a stand-up bassplayer and an old time friend of Gustaf. And he did. The Buckshots were born. Jörgen had to reinvent his Rockabilly skills and they did five albums and about 140 shows, before booze and internally fights broke the band in 2008.

Since then Jörgen had gotten his Youth Leader degree, and formed his own back-up band called Hot Rhythm through ads in the newspapers. The band members are Tommy Olssen (drums), Roine Lundstrom (stand-up bass), Per Eriksson (piano), Philip Mauritszon (saxophone) and Mary West. Tommy and Roine has been playing together since forever in different line-ups. Per is a Jazz-pianist who is forced by Jörgen to become a great Boogie Woogie-pianist, and he is! Philip usually plays in the local big-band called Lazy Lerum Big Band. Mary West is to be considered as a solo artist also, and is a Kindergarten teacher by profession, she only sang for the little kids before she joined her husband in the band.

This new album did not come smoothly, and maybe isn't supposed to be... It started out last summer. The oldest brother of Jörgen suddenly died. Jörgen took a 3 week leave from his work as a Youth in October 2009 to again write the album. Back then he worked as a personal assistant for a kid with the disease Aspberger. As he got back from his leave and writing, the kid died in an accident and Jörgen left the album for what it was. Jörgen says the album was like it was jinxed from the start. Finally in January 2010, Jörgen got the band together, had fresh mood and recorded 42 tracks of which 15 went on this album. But more problems came, Jörgen couldn't find a record label to release it. Jörgen had just released two Live albums by The Buckshots on his own label Red West Production, so he thought:"What the Hell! I release it myself!" Jörgen knows that June isn't the best time for releasing an album because holidays and so, but he also knows this kind of music is timeless, it will sell anyway! Let's hope the trouble surrounding this album is over!

Jörgen says that some people like the variety of this album, some will hate it because of that. I must agree with him. The people who listen to this album will also agree with me that that same variety of music styles is a big plus, you won't get tired of listening to the same music every track. When Jörgen writes his music, he says, he just sit down and tries to find a hook that speaks to his stomach, no matter what style the music is, that's why you can find a variety of styles on this album, good music speaks for itself! Besides a record label with his own recording studio, Red West Production is also an expanding booking agency with artists like Firball Steven and Thommy Borssën and off course Red West & Hot Rhythm!

Okay, time for a quick review. The opener is a high driving track: "Boogie Woogie Flu" If you haven't got the flu, this is the one you want! Next a song with desires, it's called "Woo At Night", a mix of a rockin' balad and a touch of Doo Wop, great saxophone in here. "Daddy's Got Himself a Brand New Automobile", stomping Rockabilly-Blues, in "No Fuzz'n'No Fight" I hear a wee bit early Stray Cats with the addition of great piano an saxophone. Next is a sweet balad "Blue Nights Without You", with Mary West on vocals, very, very nice indeed! Pitch black Country in "Broken Dreams". "I Call On You" is straight forward Rockabilly, nothing more, nothing less. What I find a whole lot better is "Heads Up". This has a rhythm you won't forget, great guitar and again piano playing! "A Heartbeat Away" is a nice bluesy balad sung by Mary West. Slow starter "Alcohol" has bits of real blues and it is building up to the end and towards the next track "I Ain't Drunk I'm Just Drinkin'". This is somewhat faster.... Boogie Woogie with Rockabilly influeces and a screaming guitar in the background. We do it for the Rock 'n' Roll in "Do It All For Love". There is even what some call Teddy Boy Rock 'n' Roll, just listen to "LoveLight" Great song, this one! I hope the next frase: "I was born in the back of Stolen Cadillac" isn't true, because then you want to die in the back of a Stolen Cadillac. That's in real short terms what "Stolen Cadillac" is all about. Last track on this album is a great instrumental "Let's Fall In Love". Did I mention that all songs are written and arranged, as well as recorded and produced by Jörgen Red Westman? Mixing was done by Jörgen and Anders Gustafsson. Nice to say that the cover artwork on this album is done by a Dutch artist,, he did also artwork for The Reverend Horton Heat, Batmobile Guana Batz etc.

Boogie Woogie Flu / Woo At Night / Daddy's Got Himself A Brand New Automobile / No Fuzz'n'no Fight / Blue Nights Without You / Broken Dreams / I Call On You / Heads Up / A Heartbeat Away / Alcohol / I Ain't Drunk I'm Just Drinkin' / Do It All For Love / Lovelight / Stolen Cadillac / Let's Fall In Love

Red West & Hot Rhythm are:
Jörgen Red Westman - Lead Guitar, Vocals
Rione Lunstrom - Stand-up Bass, Backing Vocals
Tommie Olssen - Drums, Backing Vocals
Per Eriksson - Piano, Backing Vocals
Philip Mauritszon - Saxophone, Backing Vocals
Mary West - Vocals

Special guests on this album:
Gunnar Frick - Steel Guitar (Ray Davies Band)
Thommy Borssén - Boogie Woogie Piano

Contact information:
Red West Production, c/o Westman
Floda Allé 22, 448 33 Floda Sweden
Cellphone: +46-0708-330181 

I want to thank Jörgen Westman for providing me this info!

Reviewed by Rockin' Kees, 2010