One Track Mind: David Gogo, “The Way You Make Me Feel” (2011)

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A Michael Jackson hit rejiggered as a blues, by a Canadian. It’s enough to make your head hurt. But in a good way.

David Gogo plays this music, found on his new album Soul-Bender on Cordova Bay Records, with a concussive menace. When he sings “just kiss me baby, and tell me twice – that you’re the one for me,” it has all of the scary salaciousness of a last-call bar-stool come on.

That’s saying something, when you start thinking about the Michael Jackson part, the rejiggered as a blues part, the Canadian part. It has to be the most dangerous this song has ever sounded, or maybe the only time it has ever sounded dangerous at all.

I loved it – and David Gogo – for that. Elsewhere, he tears through a quartet of formidable originals and a set of covers that includes Elmore James (sure), Wilson Pickett (whoa) and Robin Trower (cool!). As good – as, yes, soul-bending – as it all is, none of it compares to “The Way You Make Me Feel.”

It made me feel like digging out my old Michael Jackson records (living off the wall, yeah!) – and finding out a whole lot more about David Gogo.

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Nick DeRiso

Nick DeRiso

Nick DeRiso has written for USA Today, American Songwriter, All About Jazz, and a host of others. Honored as columnist of the year five times by the Associated Press, Louisiana Press Association and Louisiana Sports Writers Association, he oversaw a daily section named Top 10 in the U.S. by the AP before co-founding Something Else! Nick is now associate editor of Ultimate Classic Rock.
Nick DeRiso
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