2019 debut solo abum.
Memphis’ Joe Restivo, member of beloved soul band the Bo-Keys, releases ‘Where’s Joe?,’ his debut album, on Blue Barrel Records (the non-profit label arm of Archer Records). Any given song on this album carries the evolution of jazz and blues guitar in a nutshell, from the classic LPs of the 50s and 60s, to which Joe and his band add their own brand of classicism. If Joe shows the tasteful restraint to stick with the pure tones of his amp, both clean and dirty, it's because he's working within time honoured forms, even as he stretches out within them. And spareness, with just tenor sax, bass, drums, and guitar, is the great virtue of this record. As Orson Welles once said, “The enemy of art is the absence of limitations.”
The album crystalises his interest in Memphis jazz music made at the intersection of jump blues, rhythm & blues, and jazz. This is swinging, fun music, jazz for hipster cocktail parties, which Restivo has been refining with his weekly residency at Lafeyette’s over four years.
Restivo calls upon bassist - Tim Goodwin and drummer - Tom Lonardo, a Memphis rhythm section that’s worked together and apart for over forty years, playing behind every major touring jazz artist. Lonardo is recipient of a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Memphis Musical Heritage Foundation and has worked with who’s who, such as Mose Allison, the Duke Ellington Orchestra, Bo Diddley, The Charlie Wood Trio, Jim Dickinson, and Calvin Newborn. Art Edmaiston, a veteran of Gregg Allman and Bobby “Blue” Bland’s bands, adds his saxophone.
“One of the city’s truly special Memphis music experiences.” Bob Mehr, Memphis Commercial Appeal
With the Bo-Keys, Restivo has performed in venues and festivals all over the world including Lincoln Center, London’s O2 Stadium, Hardly Strictly Bluegrass Festival, as well as shared stages with luminaries in soul, jazz and blues including Syl Johnson, Newborn, Bobby Rush, and Carla Thomas. A graduate of the Jazz and Contemporary Music Program at New School University in NYC, Restivo has also played with rising soul singer Robert Finley. He spins Memphis jazz as a DJ on his weekly radio show on WEVL.