C9S2CD15 Think I have said before I have a fair bit blues stuff, covering most spectrums of the music, from the original origins of the music (Robert Johnson, Leadbelly etc) to the morphed modern versions created by the likes of Little Axe, and The Kelly Bell Band. This album is a modern artist recreating the sound of the originals which lots of guys are prone to do and this sometimes causes a problem.
There are lots of artists reproducing traditional blues, Alvin Youngblood Hart, Corey Harris, and to some extent Keb’Mo’ (early in his career) the difference is that although they were firmly based in traditional acoustic blues they were always pushing it, where as Guy Davis seems happy just to reproduce and I’m not sure if that’s a good thing. It’s a bit like going to see a Led Zeppelin tribute band, they might be good and a decent replacement for the original as you can’t see the original but truthfully can they ever replace the original?
This album is a live recording with Davis playing solo. Of the 12 songs we get 8 covers 4 original Davis tunes. We get the blues classics Dust my Broom (made famous by Elmore James but written by Robert Johnson) along with Candy Man (Reverend Gary Davis) being the best of the covers. The struggle with this album as it makes me want to listen to other artists rather than settle down and listen to Guy Davis, it makes me remember how good the blues can be, but not necessarily on this album. It’s not a bad album but it’s a mile away from being a great blues album. Although a live recording the audience is noticeably absent in the most part. Although Davis introduces the songs with a brief story crowd applause either didn’t happen or is very low in the mix which gives the album a very strange feel.
I don’t hate this album it’s good enough to make me want to listen to the Blues again, but not Guy Davis’ Blues!