JEFF HEALEY-Heal My Soul
Canadian singer/guitarist Jeff Healey died on March 2 2008 at the very young age of 41 from cancer. He came into the rock scene in the late eighties with the CD ‘See The Light’. An ironic name for a first CD of an artist who was blind. Jeff made a big impact with that album and also with the follow up ‘Hell To Pay’. What also helped that he sang and played in the 1989 movie ‘Roadhouse’ with Patrick Swayze, Ben Gazzara and Sam Elliott as the main characters. Also on the live front Healey was a force to be reckoned with. Sitting on a chair with the guitar on his lap he would give it everything. I remember a gig in Ahoy in Rotterdam (NL) that was just outstanding. By placing a carpet on stage Jeff was given some freedom to move around from time to time, the carpet being his safe haven as he would exactly know how far he could go. After the third and fourth album (‘Feel This’ and ‘Cover To Cover’ ) things went a bit downhill. After the 2000 release ‘Get Me Some’ Jeff turned away from rock being frustrated with things and also being a victim of mismanagement did not help his cause. He started a career in blues and jazz and recorded a handful albums in that style. ‘Mess Of Blues’ came out shortly after his passing. Around 1995/1996 he recorded some more rock songs that have been kept in the archives and are now released. Although the production of the CD might lack a bit of power, it is great to hear Jeff Healey rock out for the last time. His guitar work is as sharp and inspired as ever and although most songs were written by other people they have that typical Healey touch. Because the man had his own sound mainly established through his blistering guitar play but also a very characteristic voice. Opener ,,Daze Of Night’’ has that typical Healey trademark, a howling guitar in combination with this slight husky voice. ‘Heal My Soul’ might not be as good as ‘See The Light’ or ‘Hell To Pay’ but at times it comes pretty close indeed. The CD inlay book contains a fascinating summary of his career and goes into detail on how this fine CD came about. Jeff Healey might be gone, but his music still lives on!