New Blues News – 5/16/2018
Blind Lemon Pledge – Evangeline (Self-produced): Blind Lemon Pledge is back with a new release of original songs aimed at connecting listeners with styles that most influenced him over the years. “I wanted to do an album that really captured the different influences that have gone into my songwriting. My concept was to hone each arrangement to capture the feeling of the variety of genres.” (http://blindraccoon.com/clients/blind-lemon-pledge/) It’s like a one man band in an after hours blues rock and swing club. Click here to listen to the title song on this disc.
Downchild – Can You Hear The Music (Linus): The original Downchild (Blues Band) was formed in 1969 and has been rockin’ the blues since then. They still rock with solid blues commitment as well as they did when they started. Band members are Don Walsh (guitar, slide guitar, harmonica), Chuck Jackson (vocals), Pat Cary (sax), Michael Fonfara (piano, organ), Gary Kendall (bass) and Mike Fitzpatrick (drums). This set is really fine throughout and is bound to get your toes tapping from beginning to end. SOLID!! Click here and scroll down clicking on the circles with arrows to listen to samples of the songs on this disc.
Markey Blue / Ric Latina Project – Raised In Muddy Water (EllerSoul): Vocalist Markey Blue has hooked up with Ric Latina (guitar) co-writing all of the songs here and creating a tight blues sound that anyone would be happy to catch at a dancing and sipping institution with good sound. Blue sounds stronger in her pronouncements and Latina is a solid match. The remainder of the group is solid as well: John Marcus (bass), Shannon Wickline (keys), Jim Williamson (trumpet) and Doug Muffet (sax, bari sax). There is also a bonus track that features Wes Little (drums), Brian Allen (bass) with Shannon Wickline (keys) backing up. This is the kind of uptown blues that creates an atmosphere with plenty of sonic space to enjoy the vocals and feel the space. Everything has to be just right because even the space informs the songs. Nothing too slick, just enough. Click here and scroll down to listen to the songs on this disc.
Reverend Freakchild – Dial It In (Treated and Released): After delivering a full blown sermon in his last release, Reverend Freakchild may just have freaked out. This disc starts in the great beyond with “Opus Earth”, but then slips into a more earthbound fixation with “Personal Jesus (on the Mainline)” and the “Hippie Bluesman Blues” before giving in with “Dial It In!”. He even does his own take on Dylan’s “It’s Alright Ma (I’m Only Bleeding)”, one of the man’s more outstanding “everything isn’t alright” songs. The Reverend (National steel guitar, organ, keyboard bass synthesizer) is assisted by Chris Parker (drums, assorted earth sounds), Hugh Pool (harmonica, backing vocals, rhythm guitar, lap steel, banjo), Robin Sylvester or Tim Kiah (bass), Mark Karan (guitar, backing vocal), Brian Mitchell (piano), Jay Collins (tenor and baritone sax) and special guest Garrett Dutton (aka G Love) on backing vocals, harmonica. Hazel Miller, Rachel Benbow Murdy and Lisa Marie also add a bit of vocal backing as well. Click here to listen to the title tune.
David Vest – David Vest (Cordova Bay): Pianist / songwriter / singer David Vest now lives in Canada, but grew up in Birmingham, AL. This is his sixth release and it is a killer swing and boogie blues set. Vest is a clever lyricist and a sly performer who lays out some fine grooving and funky blues that reflects the past, but is “right now” as well. Original songs like “What’s The Matter Now” and “Decolonize Yourself” are solidly hip to the tip! Vest is supported Billy Hicks (drums), Ryan Tandy (bass), Tom Bowler and Peter Dammann (guitars). So fine! Click here to listen to some solid advice – “Decolonize Yourself”.