So it isn’t often that I make a list of artists to listen to load up three albums and enjoy them all! Well that’s what happened today. I checked the Living Blues chart for March and April and picked three names I didn’t recognize to give a listen. The three artists and albums (and position on April chart) were Delta Moon – Hellbound Train (20), Kirk Fletcher My Turn (9) and Mannish Boys Shake For Me (2). First up was Delta Moon and Hellbound Train and the title track which opens the albun was enough for me to know that I was going to like this band! Here’s what they say about their music on their website:
The dual slide guitars of Delta Moon carry the listener deep into the heart of the American South, where sinuous Mississippi blues meets the gritty backwoods twang of Appalachia and winds around a rock-steady beat like kudzu on a barbwire fence.
The band calls Atlanta Georgia home and is composed of: Tom Gray – vocals, lap steel, guitar Mark Johnson – guitar, backing vocals Franher Joseph – bass, backing vocals Darren Stanley – drums Again from their website some info some info about the lead singer Tom Gray
The American Roots Music Association named whiskey-voiced Tom Gray 2008 Blues Songwriter of the Year. His songs have been recorded by Cyndi Lauper (including the hit “Money Changes Everything”), Manfred Mann, Carlene Carter, Bonnie Bramlett and many others.
Because I only got one listen I will differ stating favorites until further listens. I do know I liked the title track and the next track “Room 429” and as for the others I know I liked the music and the vocals of Tom Gray!
The second album was My Turn by Kirk Fletcher whose name is familiar but I don’t know why! Anyway like Hellbound Train as soon as I heard the opening track I knew I would like this album, too. From Fletcher’s page at Delta Groove Records:
As a two time W.C. Handy Award nominee, who has toured with Lynwood Slim, Janiva Magness, Charlie Musselwhite and The Fabulous Thunderbirds, as well as performing with James Cotton, Pine Top Perkins, Hubert Sumlin, Mojo Buford, Ted Harvey, Larry Carlton, Robben Ford, Michael Landau, Elvin Bishop, Ronnie Earl, Doyle Bramhall, Michelle Branch and many more… Kirk Fletcher is considered one of the best young guitar players on the blues scene today. and here’s a little about the album: My Turn” finds Fletcher stretching out instrumentally and exploring new sonic territories on the guitar. In addition, Kirk also makes his surprising vocal debut on two songs which include the Jimmy Reed classic “Found Love,” and an ultra funky version of Sly Stone’s “Let Me Have It All.” This is a project that is very near to Kirk, and one that he just absolutely felt compelled to make. So with the intuitively selected album title of “My Turn,” it would only be appropriate to let Kirk have the last word… ”I am so proud of this record. Though it took a while it was so much fun to get together with my best friends and just play! So here you go and God bless you all.”
Again, I only listened to the album once so I don’t know specific tracks I liked I liked the overall sound of the album and obviously Fletcher’s guitar work!
2010 heralds the passing of the five year anniversary mark of the birth of Delta Groove Music. Likewise, The Mannish Boys, for whom the label was originally conceived, are similarly celebrating five years of electrifying the blues for audiences the world over. The fundamental concept of the band was simple; assemble a group of like-minded musicians to capture the spirit and joy of this timeless music, and reintroduce it for a whole new generation to appreciate and discover. This project, which was only initially envisioned as a one-time testimony to the power of the blues, has now given way to a new institution privileged with the task of preserving this music and presenting it as a vital, living, breathing entity. The Mannish Boys fifth album, “Shake For Me,” carries forth the tradition established by their very first effort, “That Represent Man,” by presenting an inspired program of deep, lowdown blues supported by a surprising and ever-revolving unit of world class musicians. Reprising their all-star roles in the band are Finis Tasby, Bobby Jones, Kirk Fletcher, Frank Goldwasser, and Randy Chortkoff, joined here by an entirely new and outstanding rhythm section comprised of Willie J. Campbell on bass (The James Harman Band, The Fabulous Thunderbirds) and Jimi Bott on drums (Rod Piazza & The Mighty Flyers, The Fabulous Thunderbirds, Woodbrain).
Other artist appearing on the album include Rod Piazza, Mike Zito, Nick Curran and a Dutch harpist “Big Pete” van der Pluijm who plays on the last track “Way Down South”.
Once again, I will differ stating my favorites until I put all three albums on the mp3 player for further listening! Along with the other albums by all the artists! Overall a good blues day! Now if the Flyers can pull it out!
Videos to come! Flyers game now!