Gary Gates : A Better World 1/27/07 All that is good about west coast music is here! On 'A Better World' Gary Gates again shows his amazing versatility as singer, songwriter and musician. His distinctive voice welds together an astonishing range of songs that seem to meander along tropical beaches, all the while planting in your mind beautiful guitar riffs and thoughtful lyrics about love and freedom. Gary handles nearly all the guitar work on the CD, as well as harmonica and vocals, and assembles a talented bunch of musicians to strike up an impressive range of rhythms behind him, along with luscious backing vocals on several tracks. Listen to the whole album - I absolutely guarantee that there will be songs that grab you right away (my favourite is 'Dance With Me'), as well as songs that grow on you more subtly. Choose from the relaxed reggae rhythms of 'Silver Dollar', 'Knocking On Your Door' and 'A Better World', the Hawaiian sway of 'Tropical Man' and 'Dance With Me', the contemplative harmonica-work on 'You Gotta Live', the engaging rhythms and wistful, haunting slide guitar on 'Days Yet To Come', and his rock finale, 'The Great Horizon' with it's great keyboard work, lovely guitar solos, nice key changes and a surprising funky interlude. Sometimes Gary is offering us an invitation to 'do nothing all day island style', sometimes he's doing his bit to bring on 'a better world', nowhere more than in 'Red White and Blue', the most serious song on the CD (as acknowledged by Neil Young on his website) - a reflection on the power of money that corrupts our deepest principles. As well as all that - it's great dance music! Susanna Braund, DJ (Old New Borrowed & Blues) on KZSU Stanford 90.1FM.