THE PRESS RELEASE: “Joe Bonamassa announces his full-length instrumental album Easy To Buy, Hard To Sell as he debuts his brand new project, The Sleep Eazys. As producer, the blues-rock titan enlisted some of his frequent collaborators, along with his all-star touring band, to play on the album. Easy To Buy, Hard To Sell takes a slight departure from Bonamassa’s revered repertoire, with the intent of honoring Danny Gatton, one of his most influential mentors, as well as covering instrumental versions of some of his favorites from Frank Sinatra, Danny Gatton, Tony Joe White, King Curtis and more. Bonamassa shares his excitement on the project, “To be honest I have always wanted to do a record like this. But, to be even more honest I’m not sure I was ready both professionally and musically, until now. The time finally felt right to finally pay tribute to a mentor, a friend and one of the greatest guitarists of all time: the late great Danny Gatton. My time hanging out and jamming with Danny as a child shaped my playing and musical pathway more than just about anyone.”
MY TWO CENTS: I enjoy a good guitar solo as much as the next middle-aged dude. But listening to a guitar hero show off for an entire instrumental album has never been my idea of a good time. To his credit, bluesman Joe Bonamassa is far from the worst offender in that regard — especially on his latest enjoyable and nostalgic outing. Easy To Buy, Hard To Sell pays tribute to legendary Nashville session guitarist and musical mentor Danny Gatton — and recalls the kitschy instrumental-rock albums of the ’60s — with lighthearted romps through songs like Gatton’s Fun House, Tony Joe White’s Polk Salad Annie, Jimmy Bryant’s Ha So, Link Wray’s Ace of Spades, and theme songs from On Her Majesty’s Secret Service and the ’60s TV show Hawaiian Eye, along with other odds ’n’ ends. Another point in Joe’s favour: He generously shares the spotlight with the rest of his Sleep Eazys touring band, including drummer Anton Fig, bassist Michael Rhodes, keyboardist Reese Wynans, harmonica player Jimmy Hall and guitarist/multi-instrumentalist John Jorgenson. Easy does it.