New album released - "Jukebox Daddy"
This is the second full lenght album of Billie & the Kids, this time packed with lots of original songs which represent the 1950s New Orleans rhythm and blues sound we wanted to capture and promote.
Some of the latest reviews.....
Second album of rhythm ' n' blues sensation from Zagreb to RHYTHM BOMB .
With acts like CHERRY CASINO , THE RHYTHM ROYAL LILY AIRES or MOE & THE BARNYARD STOMPERS the label has already been high-ranking representatives of the scene increasingly popular sound of the late 40s at the start. Her debut " Take One " did the octet of the charismatic microphone Diva ANA " BILLIE " KLABUCAR scene in circles highest respect a . With " Jukebox Daddy " prove the Croats now that the early praise was rightly distributed . Fourteen brand new numbers plus three bonus tracks let the genre friend with open mouth back : so stylish agierend , full of musical finesse and playful devotion of Rhythm 'n' Blues, Jive , Rock " n" Roll and jump blues is rarely presented . With ideal occupation (3 saxophones, piano, bass , guitar and drums) BILLIE AND THE KIDS let their charming casual style in full glory shine while KLABUCAR in the footsteps of immortal heroines such as DINAH WASHINGTON, ETTA JAMES RUTH BROWN or . With " Jukebox Daddy" the Hungarians succeed no less than a brilliant performance in their field .(Taken from German independent distribution BROKENSILENCE - http://brokensilence.de/kuenstler/detail/?artist=billie-and-the-kids&i=2282)
Hailing from Zagreb, Croatia, the posse that is Billie and the Kids – seven members in total – return with their second long player that is packed with even more resolve than their first outing. The impact of the Kids’ second album ‘Jukebox Daddy’ is immediate, as lead vocalist Ana Klabucar – aka Billie – bursts out of the traps with the appropriately named ‘Scorched’ in a vocal that will stop you dead in your tracks due to its immense power that sounds one moment doused in kerosene and the next dripping in honey, either way the Kids’ front figure is truly blessed because this is a vocal to die for. Where this album differs to its predecessor is the high volume of original material that is proudly announced in the sleeve notes and rightly so because there is a genuine sense of nostalgia captured as ‘Jukebox Daddy’ revives, to great perfection, a 1950s rhythm and blues sound that is moving and shaking for all to witness in 2014. The rumbling boogie of ‘Your First Kiss’ and lead track ‘Jukebox Daddy’, that once more parades Billie’s impassioned voice (Ah, the sound of those rolling notes!), are but two examples that encapsulates everything that is right about this album when it comes to recreating an authentic 50s rhythm and blues sound. Part of this magic is down to the proficiency of the musicianship, but also for the significant role bassist Jurica Stelma performs with regard to the band’s songwriting, as his prolificacy in this area is crucial to the wealth of original material littering ‘Jukebox Daddy’. If your life is crying out for a faithful rendition of rhythm and blues that has just jumped straight out of New Orleans by way of Zagreb, then you have come to the right place as Billie and the Kids is peddling a deeply rousing and rhythm shaking version of this very genre that will bowl you over. (Taken from Finish FAMOUS LAST WORDS - http://famouslastwordsrecords.com/reviews/?genre=blues-country-folk)
I realised that this one was on my list of record to review for quite a long time and I quickly put it in the player. After a few bars of the first song I thought I had made a mistake, the sound I hear didn’t match the picture I saw on the booklet. How could a strong and “black” voice like that come from such a young and frail lady? I double checked, pinched me (one never knows) but I soon had to admit the reality: Billie & the Kids don’t come from New Orleans but from Zagreb, Croatia and Jukebox Daddy has not been recorded for Savoy or Modern in the fifties but for Rhythm Bomb in 2013.
These boys (piano, guitar, double bass, drums and three saxes as well as a couple of guests) and girl nailed the sound of their favourite records (Etta James, Ruth Brown, Varetta Dillard) perfectly and make it sound natural. It’s due to their musicianship and ease, but mostly to their ten originals penned by Jurica Stelma, the band’s bassist that include ballads, boppers, jumpers and some latin too.
Don’t miss it. (http://www.the-rockabilly-chronicle.com/billie-and-the-kids-jukebox-daddy/)
By Andrew Smith
Rhythm Bomb Records may well have released the best R&B album of the year in this fourteen track (plus three bonus tracks) belter.
Billie and the Kids made waves at the Rhythm Riot a couple of years ago and this is their second release. Think the New Orleans sound from the 1950’s and you have an idea of what to expect. And indeed the opening track, a cover of Varetta Dillard’s ‘Scorched’ sets the tone with it’s scolding familiarity. It’s track two, ‘Your First Kiss’ that is the first of the original compositions by bassist Jurica Stelma. With seven musicians backing her and Billie’s (Ana Klabucar) powerful set of vocal pipes, the listener will immediately be put in mind of Atlantic Records circa 1950.
Consolidating their appreciation of their choice of cover material, LaVern Baker’s ‘Bumble Bee’ gets an outing with an excellent guitar solo offsetting the vocals. That sets you up for four consecutive original tunes, starting with the title track ‘Jukebox Daddy’, a cracking romp with a brilliant beat. ‘Blueprint of My Heart’ is slightly slower, and Billie’s voice is excellently pitched on this stroll sound. ‘Maybe’ sums up the New Orleans theme and could have come straight from the pen and piano of Fats Domino, and ‘It’s Wrong’ has more than a hint of Penniman about it, which is by no means a bad thing!
Another LaVern Baker corker from 1953 gets the treatment, this time it’s ‘How Can You Leave a Man Like This?’, followed by the suspicious lilt of Big Maybelle’s ‘I’ve Got a Feeling’. This cover of the 1954 beauty has the mistrustful, almost growling vocal delivery of the original, and is a solid cover. Slowing the tempo right down is ‘Lonely Days’, another Stelma penned Blues and Jazz soaked number that could have come straight out of a 1950’s smoke filled Louisiana bar.
The suggestively titled ‘Come and Fool Around With Me’ is an uplifting bounce along track with a glorious guitar and saxophone break, while ‘You’re Gonna Be Sorry’ tells the subject off in a Mambo shuffle style. At four and a half minutes long, ‘Your Love’ is the longest on the CD, and Billie’s vocal delivery is exquisite, set to piano and gentle brush played drums, with a well crafted sax break. Rounding off the self penned songs is ‘I Need You Tonight’ with it’s joyful cadence.
Listed as ‘bonus rockin’ tracks’ there are three familiar covers, the first of which is a mainstay of many a female led band, Etta James’ ‘Tough Lover’. It’s easy to compare this favourably with the original and indeed Billie’s contemporaries. ‘I’m Wise’ is a cover of Eddie Bo’s original, better known maybe as ‘Slippin’ and Slidin’ by Little Richard which originally was released a month after Bo’s in 1956. And topping off is another telling off tune, this time Marie Knight’s ‘I Thought I Told You Not To Tell Her’.
This collection of songs is simply sublime, packaged with a booklet of atmospheric photgraphy. If you put it on the player and don’t read the credits, you’ll be astonished that some of the songs are recently composed and not obscurities from the vaults of Atlantic or Okeh for example.
A first class CD.