Album Review: Snowy White – Driving On The 44

Album Review: Snowy White - Driving On The 44
Reviewed by Paul Hutchings

There’s a lot of history with Snowy White. Friend of Peter Green, touring member of Pink Floyd in the 1970s, participant in the US shows of ‘The Wall’ and member of Thin Lizzy for three years with two albums, ‘Chinatown,’ and ‘Renegade’ to his name. His first solo album White Flames was released in 1983 and produced the hit single ‘Bird of Paradise.’ Since then, his career has continued, partly solo work along with several collaborations as The White Flames with Dutch Indonesian musicians Juan van Emmerloot (drums/percussion) and Walter Latupeirissa (bass and rhythm guitar). White toured with Roger Waters from 1999 to 2014, maintaining the Floyd connection. Further solo releases followed, the most recent being 2020’s ‘Something on Me.’ Aged 74, White continues to produce soulful blues music that is perfect for a relaxing summer evening with a glass of something cold as the sun goes down.

‘Driving on the 44’ is a mature piece of work, as one would expect. The musicianship is superb, relaxed, and chilled, but of a high quality. Some of the tracks struggle a little in the lyrical department, ‘Down in the Dark’ being the obvious example with an attempt at human observation coming across as the musings of a grumpy old man. Yet his organic playing glosses over any shortcomings in the lyrics. Opening track ‘Freshwater’ brings a deliciously mellow style, the title track gets the foot tapping and there is an extended workout on ‘Blues 22’ which is well worth a listen. White adds a stellar solo on ‘Keep on Flying.’

Album Review: Snowy White – Driving On The 44

Alongside White, who also plays keyboards and bass as well as singing, we have the talents of Thomas White on drums and percussion, Max Middleton on piano, Hammond, and strings and Ferry Lagendijk on piano, Hammond, synth. The combination brings a level of quality that only experienced musicians can deliver. The riffs are relaxed, the grooves are cool, and the overall vibe is one of smoky, soulful blues.

He may not be the household name he was for a brief moment in 1983, but White and his signature Gibson Les Paul Goldtop continue to make beautiful music which will please thousands of discerning guitar fans. It certainly is a laid-back journey that is worth taking.

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