New Blues News – 5/19/2020
Linsey Alexander – Live At Rosa’s (Delmark): “Linsey Alexander is a true Bluesman, and these performances were recorded from a live show at a the legendary Chicago blues club, Rosa’s Lounge. Continuing the Delmark legacy of great live recordings, this album will give Linsey the respect he deserves as an artist and mentor to many younger musicians. The milestone record “All Your Love, I Miss Loving, Live at the Wise Fool’s Pub” by Otis Rush was a touchstone for Linsey’s project. Mixed and mastered at Riverside Studio, with special thanks to Dick Shurman and others, “Live at Wise Fool’s” is an ultimate example of an authentic blues album and moment. Linsey Alexander’s “Live at Rosa’s” producer Julia Miller has fond memories of Wise Fool’s as well (though in a later era than Otis’s “Live” was recorded). For Linsey, the Delmark team (Miller/Barilari/Wagner) was going for an updated, modern sound, with a classic energy and pacing.” (https://delmark.com/2020/02/live-at-rosas-from-linsey-alexander-coming-spring-2020/) The results are fantastic on this set as well! In fact, this is a certified Professor Bebop “Wax Devoid Of Cracks”! Check it out! Click here and scroll down to listen to samples of the songs on this release!
Johnny Burgin – No Border Blues (Delmark): “The 1970’s Japanese tours of Chicago blues legends Otis Rush, Jimmy Dawkins, Eddie Taylor, and others created a small but intense Japanese blues scene that bursts over with talent three generations and over forty years later. Delmark Records was there at the beginning of the Japanese love affair with hard-hitting Chicago blues, releasing Otis Rush’s So Many Roads (Delmark 643) recorded live in Japan in 1975. Many of the attendees at that show were so inspired that they went on to become Japan’s first generation of blues musicians, and to serve as inspiration to the younger artists featured on the recording we’re proud to present today. No Border Blues is the first-ever American compilation of some of the brightest flames of the small but fervent underground blues scenes of Osaka, Tokyo, and Kyoto. It’s an unprecedented showcase of young and committed traditional blues artists that by and large never expected to be heard outside Japan (or even outside of their neighborhood “live house”), but very much deserve to be. Johnny Burgin’s (formerly Rockin’ Johnny’s) tagline of “The Worldwide West Side Guitar Man” encapsulates his focus on traditional Chicago “West Side” style so well documented by Delmark records, as well as his rigorous international touring schedule. He’s certainly no stranger to inter-cultural blues endeavors, having collaborated with blues artists in 15 countries in recent years. He’s toured Japan four times since 1996 and he drew on his long relationships with Japanese artists both in Japan as well as in Chicago to produce this recording. Johnny sings a few songs and contributes guitar throughout, but he very much puts the spotlight on the remarkable and inspiring playing of his Japanese peers. (https://www.bluestownmusic.nl/johnny-burgin-no-border-blues/) Click here to listen to a song from this disc.
Tony Holiday – Soul Service (VizzTone): “There are many young players on the current international blues scene and Tony Holiday is one that stands out amongst the finest!Tony Holiday, a Vocalist and Harmonica player hailing from Memphis TN has been recognized by peers such as Charlie Musselwhite and James Harman as a rising star in the community… Tony, on vocals and harp, brings out that old school voice that is sometimes missing from the Blues scene today. It harkens back to when the Blues were just finding their way in the new electric age. In that transition, the sounds that were coming out of the local independent record labels in Memphis and that you might of heard from the King Biscuit Hour in its later years or on one of the other many stations that spotted the value of the Blues.” (https://thestateroompresents.com/the-state-room/state-room-calendar/tony-holiday-the-soul-service) Victor Wainwright adds keys to some songs as well. Holiday has one foot in country and the other in straight-ahead blues. Click here to listen to samples of the songs on this disc.
Eliza Neals – Black Crow Moan (E-H Records): “Eliza Neals is a prolific songwriter, confident producer, arranger, bandleader, pianist, and one-of-a-kind live performer. Eliza sings with unearthly passion and velvety grit, effortlessly pushing air to new heights. Her operatically trained voice has been called both sexy and menacing…a combination of modern electric Blues, Psychedelic Rock with a twist of Jam band and Southern Soul.” (http://elizaneals.com/about/) She also has 15 releases to her credit. She has tremendous power but also has great control. The players include Neals (vocals, keys, Rhodes, and B-3), Derek St. Holmes (guitar on 3 songs), Mike Puwal (guitar on 3 songs, bass on1) and Howard Glazer (guitar on 2 songs), with shifting bass players Chuck Bartels, Jason Kott, and Lenny Bradford; and drummers Jeffrey “Shakey” Fowlkes, Demarcus Sumter, Brian Clune, John Medeiros Jr and Skeeto Valdez; with Bruce Bears and Jim Alfreson on keys. Special guest Joe Louis Walker plays and sings on two songs well. Click here to listen to “The Devil Don’t Love You” with Joe Louis Walker.
Evelyn Rubio – Crossing Borders (Seaspeed): Singer/songwriter/saxophone player Evelyn Rubio offers her second release and is broadening style. She is “a singer, dancer, actor and later came musical theater where she toured as the lead role (Mary Magdalene) in a Canadian production of Jesus Christ Superstar. Equally important at the very same time, was her growing interest in American blues, soul, jazz, rock and R&B and of all instruments, the saxophone. (She now plays the tenor, alto and soprano).” (https://evelynrubio.com/biography/) The songs range from pop to standards, including “Besame Mucho” and uptown blues and country styles. Click here and scroll down to listen to the song “He Did Me Wrong But He Did Me Right” from this disc.