Joe Perry’s Have Guitar, Will Travel Goes Nowhere New

Joe Perry Have Guitar Will TravelLet me premise this with the fact I am a huge Joe Perry and Aerosmith fan. Being a guitar player growing up in Boston in the 70’s and 80’s you had no choice but to idolize this six string slayer. Joe Perry has redefined how a guitar should sound, how a song is structured and all basic principles of Rock n Roll.

With Have Guitar Will, Travel Perry returns to his hard rocking bluesy roots. Opening tune “Still Have A Long Way To Go” has that hyper 8th note bass line feel that dominated Joe’s first two solo albums. The song is solid and would be a stand out in 1980. In 2010 it sounds like rehash.

It makes you wonder if these are new songs written for this album or tunes Aerosmith has passed on over the years. “Slingshot” the second song on the disk has a fell like “Same Old Song And Dance” it is a variation on a 12 bar blues as most of the themes on the disk are.

Peter Green classic “Somebody’s Gonna Get (Their Head Kicked In Tonite)” is also on the album, yet another I, IV, V – 12 bar blues tune.

Further imbedding the throwback theme of this album in my head is a track called “No Surprise’. Yes Aerosmith has a song by the same title. This new tune cannot hold a candle to the classic track “No Surprize” from the Aerosmith masterpiece “Night In The Ruts”.

As you can probably tell I was not blown away by the album. That was until I heard the song “Wooden Ships” this is a great song. A very funky rocker with depth, structure and a killer lead. Now I am starting to feel Joe. The album closes out with “Scare The Cat” a Joe Perry Project sounding rocker. 8th notes on the bass, 12 bar blues format and a big back beat.

Ironically the chorus on this son is “Tonight’s the night when every thing change nothings ever gonna to look the same.” Nothing changed this is another JJP album and the weakest of the four. I think it is time for Joe to head back to Aerosmith.

This brings me to the next order of business. Joe Perry is quoted in this month’s Guitar Player magazine in regards to Aerosmith looking for a new lead singer. It seems the band wants to move forward and Tyler wants to take time off. Perry says “The rest of us want to play and we’re thinking about getting somebody that is a headliner in their own right”

That eliminates my choice for a Steven Tyler replacement, Charlie Farren. For those of you that are outside the Boston area Charlie Farren was the frontman for the second JJP album. Charlie’s dynamic vocals and phenomenal writing helped produce one of the best albums to ever come out of a Boston recording studio, I’ve Got the Rock ‘n’ Rolls Again. Though Charlie is a local legend in Boston music, I don’t think he has the national recognition the band is looking for.

So do you know who I think will be the new front man for Aerosmith? Bryan Adams. Stick with me, he has the same raspy voice as Tyler. Bryan Adams also has a history with the band. Back in the 80’s Adams tried to shop some songs to Aerosmith that he thought would be a good fit for the band.

He can handle the rockers and ballads and has national recognition. I have never heard him do anything as heavy as “Toys In The Attic” or “Sweet Emotion” but I know he is a big fan of the band and has the chops to pull it off.