Legendary troubadour Van Morrison returns with a jolt of electricity, paying homage to American rock 'n' roll and R&B classics on his new album, Accentuate The Positive. Guests include Taj Mahal and the late Jeff Beck.
Accentuate The Positive is not a mere stroll down memory lane; it's a dynamic revisiting and reimagining of classic songs, where Morrison infuses these timeless tracks with an energy that constantly stretches and challenges the very traditions that defined them. Much like his previous release, Moving On Skiffle, the album finds Van Morrison circling back to one of his childhood passions, but this time, it's all about that good ol' rock 'n' roll. Growing up in Belfast in the post-World War II era, Morrison was profoundly influenced by the intoxicating sounds of 20th-century rhythm and blues, the blues, and the burgeoning rock 'n' roll movement. Artists like Fats Domino, Chuck Berry, and the Everly Brothers became his muses. It didn't take long before he was intuitively reinterpreting these sounds with his own band, performing for local audiences in hometown venues.
Fast forward several decades, and Morrison is revisiting the very essence of his musical roots. He breathes new life into his personal favorites, injecting a vitality that challenges and expands the boundaries of tradition. With his unmistakable voice and expert arrangements, he revitalizes timeless treasures like the Johnny Burnette Trio's "Lonesome Train," Johnny Kidd & the Pirates' "Shakin' All Over," and Big Joe Turner's pioneering rock 'n' roll hit, "Flip, Flop and Fly." Accentuate The Positive also has an impressive lineup of contributors, with the late Jeff Beck on electric guitar and Chris Farlowe lending his vocals to "Lonesome Train." Additionally, Taj Mahal makes his presence felt on "Lucille" and "Shake, Rattle And Roll."
Van Morrison sums it up perfectly when he says, "Rock 'n' roll is about simplicity, sincerity, and expressive power, and there's no way you can get away from that. That's why it's good, and that's why it's lasted. It's spirit music."