Artist: George Gritzbach: Guitars; Backing Musicians: Scott Lariviere: Bass; Christian McCarthy: Drums and percussion; Johnny Menezes: Keys; Peter Murry: Sax; Jerry Portnoy: Harmonica; Steve Ahern: Trumpet; Dan Anthony: Trombone; and Gabby Rossen: Vocals
Album: ‘Full Circle;’ Released: June 1, 2021 by George Gritzbach Music; Producers: Gritzbach and Jay Sheehan
Taking the time to embrace the present moment, while also embracing sentimental relationships and moments in life, is the powerful motivating message on Blues singer-songwriter George Gritzbach’s latest album, ‘Full Circle.’ The recently released roots-R&B record, which marks the artist’s sixth studio release, highlights his musical talents throughout its 10 tracks. Backed by a seasoned rhythm section, the Waquoit, Massachusetts-based musician crafted songs that feature relatable, innovative perspectives and moods, both lyrically and instrumentally, which won’t soon be forgotten.
‘Full Circle’ begins with the stellar R&B entry, ‘All About Now,’ which thrives on the interweaving grooves of the sax, drums and guitars with Gritzbach’s stylized vocals. The atmospheric, energetic tune features inspirational lyrics, which are supported by radiant harmonies and encourage the guitarist’s listeners not to disconnect from their lives. He also advises them to live in the moment, even when they’re preoccupied with what can go wrong in the future.
‘All About Now’ then transitions into the album’s sophomore track, ‘Sweet Misery,’ which is drastically different in tone from its predecessor. Beginning with a slow-buildup of classic blues instrumentation, which features a Carlos Santana-inspired Latin-blues guitar riff, the song eases into the artist crooning about the power that love possesses. He particularly proves his versatility as a musician through the passionate lyrics that specifically emphasize his experiences with the heartache that arises from his romantic relationship.
One of ‘Full Circle’s standout middle entries is its fifth song, ‘Never Far Away,’ which exudes an intriguing blend of the blues sax and rock guitar. The instrumentation supports the singer as he croons that he’s never far away from what he wants, but he has also realized that love isn’t always easy.
The record begins to wind down with its penultimate track, ‘Burning at Both Ends,’ which reflects on the challenges of finding a balance between family and work commitments. Supported by a stellar blend of the sax and guitar, Gritzbach chronicles his experience of trying to stay fully dedicated to all of his commitments. The artist has created a unique tune that’s surprisingly upbeat, despite its serious subject matter. That lively beat flows into the song’s production, which would surely draw audience members in during its live performances.
‘Burning at Both Ends’ is followed by ‘Full Circle’s closing track, ‘Better Than Gold,’ which is driven by a rolling country-blues drumbeat and organ work. The atmospheric song delivers a powerful, encouraging messages of unity and hope, as the musician notes that everyone has trouble contending with love, to varying degrees. But he encourages his listeners to believe in love, no matter what they’ve experienced in life, in the soulful tune.
Gritzbach crafted an emotionally driven, but equally liberating and lighthearted, collection of Blues, roots and R&B songs on ‘Full Circle.’ The record highlights the artist’s musical talents throughout its 10 tracks, which feature relatable, innovative perspectives and moods. The songs’ lyrics, vocals and backing instrumentation are so relatable and heartfelt that they won’t be soon forgotten.