Originally, 6 String Theory was meant to be a kind of celebration of Lee Ritenour’s fifty years (2010) as an active jazz guitarist. That it was the story behind his collaboration with the greats like B.B.King, John Scofield, Robert Cray, George Benson and many others. When he thought the line up was incomplete, Lee invited the blues-rock rising star Joe Bonamassa, Guthrie Govan, Joe Robinson, Andy McKee, and also Canadian guitar prodigy Shon Boubil. By looking at the players that are involved in this project, no doubt, this is a party of the masters.
The general flavor presented in 6 String Theory is never too far away from blues, jazz, and rock disciplines. It's quite fine not to ask around about what a certain genre the album presents, but how crazy each actual player's performance is. The opening track "Lay It Down" for example, with its catchy, funky and cool jazzy vibes, all big fans of Lee Ritenour easily know it's him - typical Ritenour's twist. "Lay It Down" is a track that shows everything done right at the start. Kudos for John Scofield, his part makes the opening party quite special. His performance along with Lee is hunky-dory where they successfully managed to trade off thrilling licks and solos. What a soulful jazz! But, when it comes to follow-on track, "Am I Wrong", let's forget a moment about cool and jazzy vibes, what we will get just a primitive blues number. Keb’ Mo’ and Taj Mahal are the right guys for the job (Lee didn't involve in that session). If you always like blues over others, so tracks like "Am I Wrong", "Give Me One Reason", and "Why I Sing the Blues" are easily your kind of thing. However, whether it's blues or not, 6 String Theory is still an incredible guitar parade executed by many prolific musicians from cross generation and cross country, and each one of them has own style and trademark.
Furthermore, it's hard not to applaud and appreciate what Joe Bonamassa and Robert Cray have done on covering Tracy Chapman's "Give Me One Reason". The two are just typical virtuoso guitar players (good singers, too), that Chapman's hit seems a little bit too easy for them to cruise over. "Why I Sing the Blues" is another case of example why the album deserves a guitar-oriented predicate. And yes that right, when legend B.B. King joins the circle, and gives his classic bluesy touch, the jam session (along with Vince Gill, Keb' Mo', Jonny Lang, and Lee Ritenour) will always be exciting. They got the show well done, and it's marked by each one's diverse solo executions and rich vocal patterns.
Of course, there are many more highlight songs that deserve to be elaborated here. For instance, about young guitarist Shon Boubil (18) covering Legnani's "Caprices, Op. 20, No. 2 and 7", or about how wonderful "Shape of My Heart" is on the hands of Lee Ritenour and Steve Lukather, and etc, but concerning entire album is more than just a great release, perhaps no more bunch of words can describe how great it is. However, if you are interested in search of its flaw, just begin with its musical direction. As said before, 6 String Theory was meant to be a kind of guitarists' showcase, that's why at the same time it also deserves to be called various-artists compilation album rather than Ritenour's alone. In short, this is highly recommended to any devotee of guitar-oriented stuff, but obviously not a good start if you are going to give Lee Ritenour's works a more attention.
On a side note, there's a few minor errors here and there like the end of the first sentence:
"Looking at those players who involved in this project, no doubt, this is a party of the masters."
I think you meant to say "By Looking at the the players that are involved in this project...."
It's really small stuff, but the review is still really well-written and this guys are really great. good choice.