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'Long Time Coming'
(Mita Records)

mark taylor

jim stapley

Jim Stapley may not be a name familiar to many but he certainly has been making a name for himself amongst fellow musicians who know talent when they hear it.

I first heard Stapley three years ago when his was performing the songs of Rod Stewart with Rod's original highly successful seventies backing band which included Jim Cregan. At the time I actually wrote in my review that Stapley was a star in the making with his confident stage manner and deep rooted voice.

Jim Stapley has also fronted The Jones Gang which feature such luminaries as Kenny Jones, Rick Wills and Dave 'Bucket' Cowell. Not only that but he has shared the stage with Rolling Stones Ronnie Wood.

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Having mixed in such circles it comes as no surprise that he came to the attention of Tony Visconti who has produced this album which is full of rich quality songs.

Stapley's influences lay deeply enriched in the heart of seventies adult rock. Opener 'No Good Reason', which has the guitar fusion of Black Crowes' 'Hurricane', is a gutsy blues stormer featuring hard knock lyrics.

Stapley has put a lot of thought into his lyrics where he pours his heart and soul throughout. The album does have a country blues flavour but in the style of when done by Rod Stewart at his prime. In fact this is the album that the Quireboys have always wanted to make but have never been sober enough to do so.

Comparisons are only musical as Stapley's voice is clean cut. Fans of Temperance Movement or even the Rival Sons will love this album.

Jim Stapley has made a bold and brave move by going out as a solo artist rather than under the mask of a band monicker but who can blame him when the quality on offer here is of such a high standard.

Another strong contender for album of the year.

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