Groovin’ in Greaseland

Rick Estrin again delves into the vagaries of the human condition with his (mostly) chromatic harmonica accentuating his wry lyrics. Accompanied on Groovin’ in Greaseland by Chris “Kid” Andersen (guitar), Lorenzo Farrell (keyboards) and new guy Alex Pettersen (drums), Estrin and company (plus a dozen or so special guests) get right down to business with “The Blues Ain’t Goin’ Nowhere,” a timely Estrin composition that joins 10 other originals on this superlative CD. With lines like “Politicians scheme and scam, pretendin’ like they give a damn,” Estrin highlights some of this country’s ills before turning his gaze to yet another of his sempiternal themes: the battle of the sexes. On “Lookin’ for a Woman,” he assures us—and her—“[It] ain’t nothin’ new, I was lookin’ for a woman when I met you.” And so it goes—“Dissed Again” is a catalog of woes, e.g., “I huffed and puffed enough to blow this harp to death/All it ever got me—broke and outta breath.” The CD’s title refers to Greaseland, Andersen’s San Jose studio, which is seeing a lot of action lately; and yes, they are groovin’.