316. Get Ready – Darrell Mansfield
GET READY (1980)
Several months ago someone asked me if there were and “jam albums” in CCM. Off the top of my head I struggled to come up with any according to my friends definition. What was being sought after was a rock and roll album that wasn’t afraid to have the musicians take over a song for a while and letting each instrument have it’s share of the spotlight.
Get Ready is such an album!
The average song lasts longer then 5 minutes with a very simple blues verse chorus structure which leaves ample time for long instrumental jams featuring guitar and harmonica (Mansfield’s instrument of choice). Solos are loud and long and a heavy blues influence.
The album was actually released on Polydor and had very limited Christian distribution when originally released. There was hope of Mansfield breaking into mainstream AOR radio but it never really happened despite relatively positive reviews. It may have had to do with the very evangelistic lyrics, something artists has never compromised on. The title track sounds like something from Dylan’s “Saved” album with a gospel choir accompanying the great guitar work.
There are no ballads on the original 8 song release and only one song that could be categorized as “pop.” This would be the last album before Eric Turner would be added to the band n guitar. Turner’s heavier rock influence would be felt on future releases, but here it is original guitarists, Dennis Carothers, who handles the slide and electric lead perfectly.
Fans of blues and southern rock like Molly Hatchet, 30 Special, Lynard Skynard and the Allman Brothers will find something here to like, In fact, this is the album I originally hoped Rick Cua would have made with the Outlaws influence.
Mansfield’s importance to Jesus Music and later CCM should not be understated, even though he primarily remained a Southern California regional star. Along with Glen kaiser Mansfield single-handedly kept the influence of blues music alive in CCM.