Big Dog Albert Castiglia
- 1Let The Big Dog Eat03:28
- 2Don't Let Them Fool Ya04:25
- 3Get Your Ass In The Van03:49
- 4Drowning At The Bottom04:32
- 5Let's Make Love In The Morning05:38
- 6What I Like About Miami02:28
- 7Easy Distance02:50
- 8Where Did I Go Wrong03:48
- 9Where The Devil Makes His Deals03:17
- 10What The Hell Was I Thinking03:21
Info for Big Dog
Meet Albert Castiglia. After five acclaimed albums and decades of blazing blues-rock shows, you might argue that you’ve already made his acquaintance. But by the Florida bandleader’s own admission, Big Dog is the first release to truly get under his skin. “I just wanted to make a record that best represented who I am, as a musician, singer, guitarist and live artist,” explains Albert. “With every release, I’ve come close, but this time, producer Mike Zito helped me nail it. He and label boss Thomas Ruf wanted me to make a raw, rocking blues record. That’s what I’m about. That’s who I am…”
Recorded at Dockside Studios, Louisiana, there’s not an ounce of fat on Big Dog’s eleven tracks, with Albert darting between self-penned originals, cherished covers and co-writes with some of his closest compadrés. “You could smell the mojo in the sweet Southern air,” reflects Albert, “and you could feel the mojo in the recording studio. We had a studio-savvy band with an incredible amount of soul, and Mike’s role as producer was the wildcard.”
Big Dog offers eleven new songs to get your teeth into, and supported by a full international tour that promises bark and bite. If you thought you knew Albert Castiglia, you don’t know the half of it. “I think this album is a major game-changer for me,” he says. “No matter what happens after Big Dog’s release, I’ll always be proud of it. When we tour this album, you can expect a balls to the wall, rockin’ blues show. Expect to get what I’ve always given you – my 100%...”
Albert Castiglia, Vocals, Electric & Acoustic Guitars
Mike Zito, Electric & Acoustic Guitars, Vocals, Percussion
Scot Sutherland, Bass
Rob Lee, Drums
Lewis Stephens, Piano, Wurlitzer, Organ
Johnny Sansone, Harmonica (on Tracks 8 & 9)
(pronounced “ka-STEEL-ya”) is Keepin On – and much more. With the release of Castiglia’s 5th CD Keepin On, August 2010 on Blues Leaf Records (his third CD on this label), Albert is doing exactly what the title of the CD suggests. Having opened for ZZ Top, Elvin Bishop, and The Radiators, he’s quickly becoming a favorite high energy performer at festivals across the country.
Castiglia’s history is as colorful as his home town of Miami, Florida, going back to 1990 when he played in a local Miami Band, The Miami Blues Authority, and won awards locally for “Best Blues Guitarist.” He got a big break after meeting the legendary Junior Wells in 1996, and soon became Junior’s lead guitar player before Wells died in 1998. Albert toured the U.S. and Europe with Junior and then found himself in Chicago when Junior passed. Soon though, he was touring again with Sandra Hall.
He returned to South Florida after deciding to launch his solo career and went to work on his first CD, Burn (2002), a self-release, collaborating with his long time friend, Graham Wood Drout of Iko-Iko. Drout’s visceral, yet literary songs became the perfect vehicle for Castiglia’s soulful vocals. In 2006, he released A Stone’s Throw, his second album and first release for Blues Leaf Records, which included two of Drout’s insightful songs, “Big Toe” and “Ghosts of Mississippi.” Castiglia and Drout also released a live CD together, titled The Bittersweet Sessions, in 2005.
His 2008 CD, These are the Days (Blues Leaf Records), contained five original Albert Castiglia songs, including a tribute to his mentor Junior Wells, “Godfather of the Blues.” The cover songs from These are the Days paid tribute to a wide range of styles and artists from Bob Dylan, Nappy Brown and Fenton Robinson. These are the Days earned him a Blues Music Award nomination for “Song of the Year” for his original, “Bad Year Blues.” Castiglia was nominated again by the Illinois Blues Blast Awards and this time walked away a winner for “Song of the Year” for “Bad Year Blues,” as well as being nominated for the “Sean Costello Rising Star Award.”
Most of his new CD release, Keepin On, was recorded live with very few overdubs. He enlisted five session musicians to help on the project, including harmonica master Sandy Mack, who played on “I Could Not Ask for More,” a Peter Green song. Mack had played on “Ghosts of Mississippi,” a track from Albert’s A Stones Throw album in 2006. According to Castiglia, “He kicked butt then and he picked up where left off on this session. ”Keepin On features five new original tunes, plus other covers of songs by John Lee Hooker, Mack Rice, T-Bone Walker, Robert Nighthawk and Bob Dylan
“I did two acoustic songs and enlisted dobro genius Toby Walker for them,’ says Castiglia about the new CD. “Toby is world renowned and has even taught at Jorma Kaukonen’s Fur Peace Ranch in Pomeroy, Ohio, a number of times. Toby came in originally to play on a song I wrote called ‘Sweet Southern Angel.’ That went so well and quickly, that we wound up doing another number for the hell of it, Robert Nighthawk's ‘Murderin' Blues.’ I can honestly sum up those two tunes with one word, ‘Magic.’ He did a great job and I hope we get to work together again.”
The result is a fascinating journey into what Albert feels is his best work to date. Listen for yourself.