Richard B. Kamins
old Dan Klarskov began playing guitar at age 11 but paid attention
to his parents and received a degree in mechanical
engineering. Still, the blues beckoned him to Copenhagen and he
began playing behind many acts as they appeared in the Danish nightclubs.
In 1995, he started his own band and here is his first solo CD.
With a band that features some of Denmark`s more famous blues players
plus the bassist from Pierre Dorge`s Jungle Orchestra, Klarskov
has produced a program that puts his influences on display. Joe
Liggins`"The Honeydrippers" opens the CD, riding in on
the strong shuffle beat and Peter Lapiki`s solid left hand on the
piano. The leader`s guitar riffs are surprisingly "mellow"
in these days of guitar heroes. He first displays his voice on "I
Left My Baby" which sounds a lot like B.B.`s "The Thrill
Is Gone" - again, it is Lapiki`s keyboard work that sets the
tone for the piece, long, droning, organ chords that help cast the
pallor the lyrics call for.
You can hear that one of Klarskov`s influences is T-Bone Walker
and he pays homage to him on "Strollin`With Bone" and
"T-Bone Shuffle" - you can hear how the Texan`s horn-like
lines gave the young guitarist a sound on which to base his own
playing style. He gives Walker`s "I Wish You Were Mine"
an odd yet fun reggae feel and "Git those Blues Off Me"
takes its cue from the Memphis-Stax Records sound of Booker T &
The MGs. He doesn`t take too many other chances but his radical
reworking of Louis Armstrong`s "Back O`Town Blues," with
the martial New orleans drums and Anders loses its all-important
The darkness of the lyrics clashes with the brightness of the rhythm
- there are instances where that works but not here.
One can hear that Dan Klarskov is devoted to this music.
You can really tell that he`s studied and practiced - what you
don`t get, quite yet, is what he sounds like. You can hear T-Bone
but you don`t hear Dan. Like so many other players, he has started,
wisely, by digging in the roots and, hopefully, he will grow.
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Dan Klarskov 1998-2001.
Page updated 08.