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While two full decades have passed since he left his post at the front line of the J. Geils Band, the peripatetic Peter Wolf is still probably best known for his manic maneuvers with that hit-making combo. This state of affairs may very well change, however, with the release of this eclectic, often fascinating disc, his sixth as a solo performer. Wolf's voice, raspy and raw even in his 20s, has been buffed into a ragged-but-right instrument capable of conveying both sweet soul (in the pensive "A Lot of Good Ones Gone") and flinty blues (a version of Sonny Boy Williamson's "Too Close Together" that's bolstered by Keith Richards' strutting guitar riffs). Wolf's deep musical knowledge, sometimes obscured by his over-the-top delivery, is displayed magnificently on covers of Otis Rush's "Homework" (a darker, cloudier take than the original) and William Bell's Stax chestnut "Never like This Before." Sleepless is peppered with intriguing cameos (Steve Earle on the honky-tonkin' "Some Things You Don't Want to Know," Mick Jagger on the sly "Nothing but the Wheel"), but it's always clear that no monkey is gonna stop Wolf from making this show his own. It's a warm, welcoming album, friendly without being desperate for attention, smart but not elbow-in-the-ribs clever, making it a true pleasure to spend time with.
Performance CreditsPeter Wolf Primary Artist,Vocals
Ada Dyer Background Vocals
Mick Jagger Harmonica,Vocals
Duke Levine Guitar,Mandolin,Electric Guitar,Soloist
Larry Campbell Fiddle,Guitar,Mandolin,Pedal Steel Guitar,Background Vocals,Guitar (Resonator),Guitar (Baritone)
Crispin Cioe Alto Saxophone
Cornell Dupree Electric Guitar,Soloist
Magic Dick Harmonica
Rob Eaton Background Vocals
Laurence Etkin Trumpet
Robert Funk Tenor Trombone
Tony Garnier Acoustic Bass
Milt Grayson Bass (Vocal)
Stuart Kimball Electric Guitar
Warren McRae Electric Bass
Sammy Merendino Percussion
Brian Mitchell Accordion
Paul Ossola Electric Bass,Acoustic Bass
Shawn Pelton Drums
Angelo Petraglia Acoustic Guitar
Keith Richards Electric Guitar,Vocals
Catherine Russell Background Vocals
Tom West Organ
Charlie Drayton Drums
John Conte Electric Bass
Kenny White Organ,Acoustic Guitar,Piano,Background Vocals,Wurlitzer
Kevin Shurtleff Percussion,Drums
Arno Hecht Tenor Saxophone
Teresa Williams Background Vocals
Theresa Williams Background Vocals
Dan Reiser Drums
Technical CreditsPeter Wolf Producer
Rob Eaton Engineer,Engineering
Otis Rush Composer
Ben Wisch Engineer
Chris Rival Engineer
Kenny White Producer
Tom Waltz Engineer
Frank Olinsky Cover Photo
Dave Westner Engineer,Engineering
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Sleepless based on 0 ratings. 5 reviews.
Heh heh. I love this record. The bit w/ Mick is priceless Stones/J. Geils country genius w/ a good touch of soul. The Richards/Wolf cover of the r&b track Too Close Together is drum-tight and as you'd expect pays all proper respect to forebears. Hey Jordan struts, while Oh Marianne nearly brought me to tears w/ its timeless beauty. Big thanks to songwriter Will Jennings for his part in the kicks here.
Sleepless makes you feel like you are listening to someone tell you stories, but the teller is talking to you, not at you. So, like all good records, it just makes you feel good. No matter how many copies this cd sells, this is a good "record".
It is good to hear that Wolf, once again, is in the college of musical knowledge. Great songs, a beautiful sound (remember Al Green and Muscle Shoals?)and on mouth and mike the Wolfman himself in a great voice. His singing keeps getting better. Where is this going to end? Chillfactor tracks: Growin'Pain,Hey Jordan and Sleepless (allready a classic). Can somebody tell Wolf to come to Amsterdam and perform there?
This is a classic album. Every song is a gem. It gets better everytime I listen to it.
...From an artist who grew up on Doo-Wop, hung at the Apollo and is a Hank Williams fan? In his early 20's the same dude hung out with (and was embraced by) major American Blues legends. His old group was practically the "House Band" at the Fillmore East in 1971! Not bad for a nice boy from the Bronx!!! "SLEEPLESS" is a "better than solid" piece of art and this artist leaves nothing off the pallet. But, for some reason, this 30+ year fan belieives that his best work is yet to come. Until then, this will do, just fine. The Jagger duet begs repeated listening, and there are moments on this album that smack you upside the head (for the very 1st time) on your 5th or 6th spin. This makes it to the desserted island!