James Wheeler – Can’t Take It
Delmark DE 743 (2000)
A lot has been happening for James Wheeler in the last couple years. He was primarily known as a guitar playing sideman but his 1998 album Ready! (Delmark 719) and recent tours of Europe and South America have established James as leader. Living Blues magazine in a review of Ready! said, “Wheeler sings and plays with polished authority. How could such a tasteful and talented musician have slipped through the cracks for so long?” Wheeler first started his own band in 1963, backing many greats as they passed through Chicago including Al Green, Johnny Taylor, Etta James and others. He did lengthy stints with Otis Clay, Otis Rush, Mississippi Heat and is currently playing guitar as a member of Willie Kent & The Gents. Can’t Take It is James’ second Delmark album and it has further established him as a bandleader and recording artist.