Vargas Blues Band: Texas Tango
Writing for Bluesrockers certainly has been a personally rewarding experience for me. Kaj Sperrås, the web master at Bluesrockers, and I share a great love for this particular genre of music and we are singularly motivated to do what we can to help promote its fine artists. Our collaboration on this project has afforded us not only the opportunity of friendship but also a mutual sharing of some of the finest blues/rock music in the world. Kaj lives in Norway, and I live in the US and we often exchange CDs from some of the great performers from our respective parts of the world.

It was Kaj who first introduced me to the outstanding music of Spain's Javier Vargas. Part Stevie Ray-part Carlos Santana, his name deserves inclusion among the list of the very best blues/rock guitarists of the day. His music encompasses a wide range of styles, including blues/rock, rock, flamenco, and Latin music. He is truly a remarkable talent whose work will appeal to a diverse audience.

"Texas Tango" contains some of Vargas' finest blues/rock recordings and includes appearances by several guest musicians, including Chris Layton, Tommy Shannon, and Reese Wynans of Double Trouble, and vocal guests Preston Shannon and Larry T. Thurston. But the "stars" do not outshine Vargas' regular stable of talent from Madrid who also contribute a wealth of expert support work.The CD is a Jim Gaines production, a name that has become synonymous with recording excellence. I have found Vargas' recordings to be consistently and impressively well engineered works.

Forget using the fast forwarding mechanism while listening to "Texas Tango": every track here is first rate and each accented by Vargas' varied and passionate guitar work. But note the partial list of supporting players above and you will realize that great guitar is not all that is present in this recording. This is a heavyweight offering in every aspect from start to finish. I have thoroughly enjoyed the CD, especially the hot title track, the electric Delta sounds of "Blues Pilgrimage", the Canned Heat flavored "Black Cat Boogie", and the driving rock beat of "Ridin' High".

The CD is a bit difficult to purchase here in the US, but with a little internet investigation and a visit to , I am willing to wager that you can pick up a copy of this fine recording via several online import suppliers. Or you may order from

The Band:
Javier Vargas: Guitars
Jeff Espinoza: Vocals

Musicians - Austin Texas:

Chris Layton: Drums
Tommy Shannon: Bass
Reese Wynans: Keyboards

Musicians - Memphis:

Steve Potts: Drums
Dave Smith: Bass
Ernest Williamson: Keyboards
Larry T. Thurston: Vocals
Preston Shannon: Vocals, guitar
Lyn Jones: Harmonica
Jacquelyn Reddick: Background vocals

1, Rose On The Water 2, Blues Pilgrimage 3, Texas Tango
4, Love Ain't Got Nowhere To Go 5, Ride Baby Ride
6, Black Cat Boogie 7, 1969 8, Ridin' High 9, Thinking Of You
10, Buenos Aires Blues 11, Big Boss Man 12, 253

DRO East West 1995
Web site: Javier Vargas Web site: Vargas Blues Band
© Bluesrockers 2001