Acclaimed guitarist/songwriter Forrest McDonald announces a February 7, 2020, release date for his new CD, Blues in a Bucket, on World Talent Records. Recorded mixed and mastered at Dogwood Recording & Mastering in Oxford, Georgia, with Ron Benner engineering, Blues in a Bucket showcases Forrest McDonald’s guitar mastery in full bloom, aided and abetted by a stellar cast of backing musicians, featuring the dynamic lead vocals of Andrew Black and special guest vocalist Becky Wright.
Award-winning guitarist Forrest McDonald has been performing and recording earth-shaking, soul-stirring music distilled in the blues for nearly six decades. His insightful song writing skills embrace the journey of an adventurous explorer who plunges head first into every twist of fate life throws his way.
The addition of a full horn section and background vocalists to many of these musical tapestries adds remarkable texture as each song unfurls. The result is an array of finely polished, deeply faceted musical gems contained in Blues in a Bucket – reflecting those personal stories that evolve into universal experiences and outcomes.
“This is actually my 15th release,” says McDonald about the new disc. “I will turn 70 this year and feel 2020 is going to be a big year for me and this recording. I have dedicated the CD to my brother, Steve, who I lost in January, 2019, to cancer and to anyone who has lost a loved one to this terrible disease. The song, ‘Blue Morning Sun,’ tells that story. A related song, ‘Go to the Light,” was written with positive and spiritual energy for those that have crossed over after passing.
“’Boogie Me Till I Drop’ has a great New Orleans party feel, so I started the CD with it to get everyone in good spirits. I was in China a few years ago and feeling lonely for the USA. I thought about two great blues towns—Memphis and Chicago and that led me to write ‘Windy City Blues.’ It grounded me. I had some low points like we all do and I wrote ‘Misery and Blues’ to relieve some of that anxiety. I was watching a lot of the series Supernatural at this time and ‘Powerhouse’ just jumped out of me. The title track, ‘Blues in a Bucket,’ is a positive classic. I was full of the blues one afternoon, pondering my problems, when I thought of how fantastic it would be to just put them into a bucket and then toss them away. The closing song ‘Let the Love in Your Heart,’ is what we need a lot more of. It’s an optimistic vision inspired by love.”
During his extensive career as a musician, Forrest McDonald has recorded with the legendary Muscle Shoals Rhythm Section. His playing on Bob Seger’s Stranger in Town, Greatest Hits and Ultimate Hits garnered him three RIAA-certified platinum albums, which combined have sold over 15 million copies. That’s Forrest guitar solo heard on Seger’s classic, “Old Time Rock and Roll.”
McDonald’s other accolades include his induction in the Boston Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, being awarded “Best Modern Southern Guitarist” by Real Blues Magazine (2002), which also voted his band as “Best Southern Blues Band” for three years-in-a-row (1999-2001).
Forrest McDonald has performed with Debbie Davies, Bonnie Bramlett, and Kathi McDonald. He’s recorded with such legends as Bobby Womack, Steve Perry and Doris Troy, and over the years has swapped licks with such guitar greats as Duane Allman, Johnny Winter, Jeff Beck, Bob Margolin, Eddie Van Halen, Jimmy Page and Roy Gaines.
His albums Just Plain Folks, Spirit of the Blues, What’s It Gonna’ Take? and Colorblind all won various awards.
Forrest’s last CD, Stand My Ground, garnered rave reviews and was described by one reviewer as “a rocking, riveting, soulful new blues release, the latest offering from singer, songwriter, and instrumentalist Forrest McDonald and his award-winning band. Whether you’ve been following McDonald’s career over the last 53 years like I have, or are a new listener, run don’t walk to your computer to download these tunes or order a CD, or both. Your heart and your ears will thank you—it’s outstanding!”
Forrest McDonald has appeared or headlined many popular outdoor festivals such as The Atlanta Blues Festival, The Gasparilla Festival, Spring Fest, The River Place Arts Festival, Bay Fest, The Vallejo Jazz & Blues Fest, Sun Fest, The Carolina Blues & Seafood Festival, Bluesapalooza, The Montreux Atlanta Festival, The Jacksonville Beach Annual Festival, The Melbourne Art Festival, King Biscuit Blues Festival and many others.
“McDonald’s fiery guitar licks showcase his vast experience in blues-based rock ‘n’ roll and R&B…the vocals soar above, around, and through each tune building to a choke-hold that won’t loosen its grip until you jump up and boogie!” ~ Black Jack, Atlanta Blues Society