blues Archive

Reviews of Three 45-rpm Singles

“We get letters,” as the saying goes. Actually, I get packages. Lots of ’em. Nearly every day. Mostly CDs, occasionally LPs. Once in a blue moon, a cassette. And nearly as infrequently as the cassettes, 7: 45 RPM records. Singles, we used to call ’em, or EPs (the term originally meant extended-play 45s; today it’s

Album Reviews: Two Various-Artists RSD Releases

The Other Side of Sun, Part 2 Sun Records had seen its heyday come and go by the time Shelby Singleton bought the label in the late 1960s. But purchase he did. And with that, Sun became part of an impressive catalog that included plenty of hits in a wide variety of genres. Even though

Hundred-word Reviews: New Releases

There’s quite a massive stack of new (or at least new-when-I got-’em) releases here at Musoscribe World HQ. Time to review them. 6-String Drag – Top of the World (Schoolkids Records) This Raleigh-based group was at the forefront of the Americana scene, back when it didn’t even have a name (some called it alt-country). After

Hundred-word Reviews: Reissues, Archival Releases, Compilations

My shelf full of albums to be reviewed has run out of space. So once again it’s time for a raft of hundred-word reviews. All sixteen titles in this roundup are reissues, compilations and/or archival releases. 6-String Drag – High Hat (Schoolkids Records) Before Americana was coined as a genre, there was alt-country. Combining rock

Delbert McClinton: Keeper of the Flame (Part Two)

Continued from Part One… Along with backing blues legends who came through Fort Worth, Texas, McClinton and his band often got the opportunity to go on the road with the traveling stars. Their roadhouse blues would influence McClinton’s own nascent songwriting. He also absorbed the influence of other musical styles of the region, including Tejano,

Delbert McClinton: Keeper of the Flame (Part One)

The term Americana hadn’t been coined when Delbert McClinton started making music. His brand of music has always drawn from blues, hillbilly, country, and rock ‘n’ roll, all filtered through a Texas sensibility. McClinton came up in a music scene that gave rise to legends like Doug Sahm, and in his earliest days he backed

Album Review: Delta Deep – East Coast Live

“Supergroup” is a term that gets bandied about so wantonly that it has become nearly meaningless. To their credit, the members of Delta Deep don’t bill themselves as one. But it’s worth noting the band’s pedigree: Def Leppard’s Phil Collen leads the group, which also features players from Stone Temple Pilots and India.Arie’s backing band.

Album Review: Back South — The Dirt Yard Choir

Led by singer, songwriter and cigar box guitarist Todd Cecil, Back South is a WNC-based trio that specializes in country blues with a decidedly hard-edged rock sensibility. Imagine ZZ Top without all the filigree, leaning back toward their blues roots. Now picture a guitarist who plays a custom instrument fashioned out of a cigar box

Chris Cain’s Effortless Blues

Modern-day bluesman Chris Cain grew up in San Jose, but his roots are in Tennessee. “My dad grew up in Memphis,” he says. Cain has his own distinct musical style, but he readily admits to some of his influences. “My dad had a lot of really good records. B.B. King and Albert King; that kind

Getting to the Point with Kim Simmonds: The Savoy Brown Interview, Part Four

Continued from Part Three… In many ways, Witchy Feelin’ hearkens back to the band’s most well-known period. As displayed on the cover of its last few album, the lettering of the band name is nearly identical to the stylized lettering used on Looking In. But beginning with 2014’s Goin’ to the Delta and continuing to