blues Archive

Album Review: Harrison Kennedy – Thanks for Tomorrow

In 1967, the hit songwriting team of Holland-Dozier-Holland left Motown to launch their own record labels, Invictus and Hot Wax. The trio assembled a group to serve as a vehicle for their new compositions. That group, The Chairmen of the Board, would feature Detroit singers Eddie Custis and Danny Woods plus lead singer Harrison Kennedy,

Album Review: Silent Partners — Changing Times

The stirring, evocative strings that adorn “Ain’t No Right Way to Do Wrong,” the opening track on Silent Partners’ debut album Changing Times, serves notice that the group is no rote blues trio. With a feel that hearkens back to classic soul sides of the ‘70s, the tune is a slow burn that establishes the

Album Review: John Primer – Hard Times

John Primer has an impressive pedigree; he’s worked as bandleader for Willie Dixon, Magic Slim, Muddy Waters and Junior Wells, which in and of itself is enough to warrant further investigation of his artistry. As a solo artist, he founded the Real Deal Blues Band in Chicago in the mid ‘90s; he has released a

30 Days Out, Nov. 2022 #2: Postmodern Jukebox, Archers of Loaf, Ana Popovic, Couch

The next 30 days include Thanksgiving, a time when – perhaps now more than ever – we gather with loved ones. But after the long weekend, we’ll all be looking to the future, and more live music. The post-holiday menu includes lots of goodies, from inspired reinvention of classic pop to edgy, indie-rock from the

Solomon Hicks: Genres Are Made to Be Broken

Blues guitarist and songwriter Solomon Hicks has a simple and straightforward perspective on music. “I like songs and music that make people feel good,” he says. “Anything that has strong beats, a good firm groove… and lots of guitar.” A key part of Hicks’ unique take on the blues is his upbringing; unlike some of

EB Davis: Ambassador of the Blues (Part 3 of 3)

Continued from Part Two… For many years as he was becoming a noted force in Berlin’s blues scene, Davis continued his duties as a member of the U.S. Army. Asked to elaborate on his responsibilities, he initially demurs. “I think the documentary can explain it better than I could,” he says. The documentary to which

EB Davis: Ambassador of the Blues (Part 2 of 3)

Continued from Part One… Those Memphis days provided all manner of inspiration for Davis as a young man. And sometimes he learned by watching and decided what he didn’t want to do. “One of my most vivid memories is seeing B.B. King,” he says. “He used to like to wear short pants.” Davis recalls seeing

EB Davis: Ambassador of the Blues (Part 1 of 3)

EB Davis is not the typical blues singer. Yes, he was born in the Mississippi River Delta, and yes, he paid his dues singing in clubs from Memphis to New York City. But he eventually made his mark far from home, in Germany. His story – one that features some clandestine work for the U.S.

Album Review: Junior Wells – Blues Legend

On first hearing of this release, my initial reaction was to shudder. While Cleopatra Records and its associated imprints have been responsible for many fine releases, there have been some notable exceptions. And those exceptions often come in the form of releases by legacy artists (i.e. dead ones), cases in which session tapes have been

30 Days Out, September 2022 #2: Cheeksters, The Explorers Club, GA-20, Stereolab

I’ve interviewed three of the four acts spotlighted in this roundup of live music. But I’d recommend them all regardless. Artist: The Cheeksters Venue: The Grey Eagle Date: Saturday, Sep. 17, 6 p.m. Door: $12 This Asheville-based band is always a delight. Their albums are filled with original songs sporting ‘Small Faces meets David Bowie’