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With Better Days, guitarist and singer Lonnie Knight returns to his acoustic roots. Dating back to the 1960s band Jokers Wild, and through his time with the Hoopsnakes and his own band Big Shoes, Lonnie Knight has earned a reputation as one of the premier blues-based electric guitar shredders in the Twin Cities music scene. But Lonnie's solo acoustic music has always been lurking in the living room (and, in the 1970s,on two albums and tours of the college and coffeehouse circuits).
Through nine original compositions and five choice covers, Knight's supple finger-style guitar and "been there, felt that" vocals reside outside the shadows of labels like "roots" and "Americana." Better Days is all about songs - in the vein of the storytellers. Sometime weary, sometimes yearning, sometimes resigned to (and amused by) the way things come down. In the tradition of folks like John Prine, early Tom Waits and Tom Paxton, you just know that Lonnie Knight has lived the stories he tells; that casual feel of someone who is not out to prove anything. They just have something they need to say, and music is the only way to get it straight.
Lonnie Knight is often associated with the blues, and it certainly is the foundation of the electric style that has earned him multiple Minnesota Music Awards for best guitarist. That foundation is present on Better Days as well. The Knight penned "Angel Headed Hipsters" opens Better Days with a blues flavor - not the live wire variety of Albert King, but the Greenwich Village picking of guys like Dave Van Ronk. More pensive is the thoughtful cover of the beautiful "I Ain't Blue," a song written by Knight cohorts John Koerner and Willie Murphy.
The title track closes Knight's new release with the conversational, intricate and deceptively effortless guitar style displayed throughout Better Days. A major departure from the electric blues-rock approach that has made him a favorite among guitar fans, Better Days is the most intimate look at Lonnie Knight yet - and he has never sounded more at home.
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