blues Archive

Album Review: Hans Theessink & Big Daddy Wilson – Pay Day

The popularity of Dutch guitarist Hans Theessink is a testament to the global reach of American blues. It’s also a testament to the quality of Theessink’s musical output. Beginning his recording career in the 1970s, Theessink has gone on to release more than two dozen albums. Many of those records have taken the form of

Album Review: Dave Specter: Six String Soul

Dave Specter’s new double album Six String Soul celebrates his three decades as a recording artist. Released October 22, the compilation features a dazzling array of guests, including Otis Clay, Lurrie Bell, Jack McDuff and more. Guitarist Dave Specter was associated with the venerable Delmark record label long before he was signed as an artist.

Album Review: John Mayall — The Sun is Shining Down

John Mayall is widely acknowledged as the godfather of British blues. And that’s not the result of any sort of revisionism; it’s a title he earned long, long ago. As far back as 1981, I was writing an essay for my college freshman English class on the “British blues boom,” and the piece centered around

Album Review: Memphissippi Sounds — Welcome to the Land

The blues featured guitar-and-drum duos long before that lean and mean lineup became a popular approach in other musical idioms. So there’s a long and proud tradition for what Memphissippi does. Yet the duo – Damion Pearson on vocals, guitar and harmonica, joined by drummer Cam Kimbrough (who also plays guitar and sings) – has

The King’s Daughter: Shirley King (Part 3)

Continued from Part Two… Shirley King says that her father made a point of providing opportunities for her to come and see him perform whenever he had a gig close to home. “He bought his middle sister a car so she could make sure I would come to some of the shows, and he made

The King’s Daughter: Shirley King (Part 2)

Continued from Part One… Her father went on to tell her how he first learned of her participation in The Human Tornado. “His band members were watching it, and he heard them laughing and howling,” Shirley says. “He came off the back of the bus: ‘What’s going on out here? What y’all laughing about?’” Once

The King’s Daughter: Shirley King (Part 1)

Being the daughter of a music legend brings with it great responsibility, especially if one chooses to follow a similar career path. And though her own journey is distinctly different from that of her father, Shirley King eventually settled into a life as a blues singer. And though her music is different from that of

30 Days Out, December 2021 #2: Drunken Prayer, Empire Strikes Brass, Andrew Scotchie and the River Rats, Arrested Development, Adam Ezra Group

This installment of “30 Days Out” marks two years since the twice-monthly bulletin has been published here on Musoscribe. Before that, starting in January 2014(!), 30DO was a twice-monthly feature of Mountain Xpress, the Asheville-based altweekly that (in those days) provided robust coverage of the local arts and music scenes. As we close the books

Album Review: Smoke Fairies – Through Low Light and Trees

In early 2020, thanks to the good graces of a kind music publicist, I received a copy of Darkness Brings the Wonder Home, the 7th album from British folk rock band Smoke Fairies. I was duly impressed with the record. As I noted in a review posted in March of last year, the band creates

Album Review: Tito Jackson — Under Your Spell

If you’re any of the offspring of Joe Jackson of Gary, Indiana, your surname carries with it a great deal of baggage. The stunningly talented Jackson 5 (later The Jacksons) racked up three Grammy nominations, induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, the Vocal Group Hall of Fame and – three times –