Cashbox Music reviews new CD
You Can’t Do That!

Mick Kolassa and Mark Telesca are bluesmen to the core, who have been honing their craft for decades. Through constant touring, releasing albums, and appearing as sidemen on countless albums released by friends, they have achieved the respect of their peers and a degree of commercial success.

They engaged in an impromptu jam session at the 2016 Blues Music Awards. They fused the blues with a number of Beatles songs. That ultimately led to their new  album You Can’t Do That, which are acoustic blues versions of 11 songs by John Lennon and Paul McCartney.

Kolassa and Telesca are both guitarists and vocalists, but they added additional guitarist and album producer Jeff Jenson to the mix, which gives the music extra depth and textures. They then added a harmonica here, a fiddle there, and even a trumpet to fill in the gaps.

It is a tight album as they stay true to the length of the songs. They improvise within the structure of the compositions and do not go on any extended journeys.

They also delve a little deeper into the Beatles catalogue. They chose songs that were adaptable to their style of blues rather than just selecting their best-known songs. “I’ll Cry Instead,” “Fixing A Hole,” “She’s A Woman,” and “Mean Mr. Mustard/Polythene Pam” are perfect for their bluesy guitars and intricate picking.

They are more adventurous on some of the Beatles up-tempo numbers. “Can’t Buy Me Love,” “Lady Madonna,” and the title track are twisted out of shape, plus they play with the tempos.

Mick Kolassa and Mark Telesca have managed to recreate a number of Beatles songs in ways that have not been previously explored, which is quite an achievement in itself after all the years. You Can’t Do That is worth a listen for any fan of the Beatles or the blues.

By David Bowling – Cashbox Music Reviews

Rating: ****


Three Independent Blues Awards Nominations!

We’re excited to announce we have been nominated for three Independent Blues Awards!

  • Contemporary Blues Album – Taylor Made Blues
  • Traditional Blues  Song – “Taylor Made Blues”
  • Best Song for the Common Good – “In The Day”

Voting is open until August 1, 2017 and the winners will be announced August 13, 2017.



Mick Kolassa & Mark Telesca release
an acoustic Beatles blues album

What do you get when two blues musicians get together to celebrate their mutual love of some of the most classic songs of the 20th Century? A great new album! Mick Kolassa and Mark Telesca Have teamed up to bring two mutual loves together: the Blues and the Beatles. This album is the kind of thing that happens when two musicians get together and decide to make some magic. They called the album You Can’t Do That, which refers to a great song that has the blues all over it as well as what many people told them when they said we were going to do the record: you can’t to that! For many, including Mick and Mark, this music is nearly sacred, but as blues artists they find and feel the blues in everything they hear, and the blues flows through the music of the Beatles more so than it does through other forms of popular music, so uncovering it was not too difficult – but oh so pleasurable!

Jeff Jensen joined the team to produce the album and together with Mark and Mick put together some pretty fancy guitar work, and with a little help from their friends the guys got this project off the ground – way off the ground! Reworking these classic tunes into blues arrangements was a joy for the artists, who brought the Beatles into many different styles of blues – but always with acoustic arrangements, no amplifiers or pedals were used in the production of this album! Instead you’ll find resonator and multiple acoustic guitars, harmonica, trumpets, flugelhorns and even a fiddle and mandolin.

Never forget, all you need is blues!



Midwest Record Reviews – You Can’t Do That!

I’ve heard hypothesis that if Beatles jumped in the van, ala Police, and toured America, they would have been a great roots band by the time they covered the country. Well….., a lot of people say a lot of things. Mick & Mark must have heard this saying and had a light bulb moment. They love blues and Beatles so they did the only thing that made sense to them—make a back porch version of Beatles songs sticking to what’s appropriate to the form rather than taking the soft landing of forcing the hits into the mold, ala gift shop music. There’s been plenty of jazz Beatles over the years but acoustic blues? Mick & Mark must have had this in the back of their minds for quite a while because the results are stunningly original and well thought out. Just the thing to drive Beatles fans that think they’ve heard everything nuts, it’s almost unthinkable to think someone could make this stuff their own but this duo does it in fine style. Hot stuff no matter how the fire burns with consistent low heat.

Midwest Record


New Taylor Made Blues Band Videos

Three new Taylor Made Blues Band videos recorded at the Rum Boogie fuBar during IBC week 2017. Produced by Skyshot Films of Memphis.