Dunhill 50121 (USA)
Memphis man Whitlock had a long history of involvement in his hometown before joining Derek & the Dominoes and contributing his songwriting talents to six songs on that set. While the band on this solo album remains uncredited on the sleeve, this set is sometimes referred to as the last Derek & the Dominoes album as all members (except perhaps Allman) play on this record. While that tag is often used to promote this album, I’d say the comment is misleading. This is clearly Whitlock’s album.
Whitlock writes or cowrites the entire set (only sharing credits on two cuts, one with Don Nix, the other with Bonnie Bramlett), and this set is actually better than the overhyped and overblown sound of Derek & the Dominoes. While some buyers might be brought to this set because Clapton plays on it, this album is better than any of Clapton’s albums.
Bands such as the Allman Brothers and The Band might be influences, but it could be that all three bands were simply influenced by similar sources. And unlike albums by those other two bands, this clearly comes from Tennessee, with all the sounds of that state coming through various cuts. The sounds clearly came from the past but also influenced bands down the road, were part of a bridge from the dirt roads of the South to the paths that bands would follow in the decades to come.
This isn’t a great album; it’s just a good one.— winch