Every now and again I like to do that blues thang. I haven’t done one of these since May, so, yeah, it’s time.
Eric Gales is one of those guitarists where you say to yourself, How come I don’t know this guy? Brief bio: 43 years old, from Memphis, Tennessee. He started playing at four (!) and has been recording since 1991. He performed with Carlos Santana at Woodstock ’94 and played on a Jimi Hendrix tribute CD. (Not much more I can say about him as his website points to his Wikipedia page for bio.)
Anyway, here’s the smokin’-out-of-the gate tune, “Cut and Run” which has some of that “La Grange” vibe:
Here’s maybe another new name for ya, Thornetta Davis. Wikipedia says she is “an American Detroit blues and rhythm and blues singer. She has opened for Bonnie Raitt, Gladys Knight, and Etta James, and sang backing vocals on Bob Seger’s 1991 album, The Fire Inside. She also worked with Kid Rock and Alberta Adams and has released two full-length solo albums.”
In 2017, she was nominated for a Blues Music Award in the Best Emerging Artist Album category, for her latest album, Honest Woman. I don’t recall exactly where I first heard her, maybe on the Sirius blues channel.
In this song, “I Need a Whole Lot of Loving (To Satisfy Me)” she lays out exactly what she needs from her man:
Hey all you fellows come and gather round
This big-lovin’ mama’s gonna break it down
It takes a whole lot of man to give me what I need
If you ain’t packin’ baby just turn around and leave
Whew! Is it hot in here or is it me?
By the time he recorded the album, Go My Way, in 2000, Robin Trower had been playing – in Procol Harum or solo – for the better part of forty years. I’ve featured Procol Harum here and a live Trower concert here.
I really dig this song, “Long Hard Game.” I remember hearing it and thinking, boy the singer sounds like he’s on Quaaludes or something. But it kinda works. Then it turned out it was Trower singing. This song has a lazy feel with some scorching guitar and I just wish it went on longer (Alas, no Spotify):
Levi Parham is from McAlester, Oklahoma. I don’t know exactly how old he is but he claims to have raided his father’s blues collection more than once. As to his influences, in his own words, “I’ve always been an admirer of the music that’s come out of Muscle Shoals, from Aretha Franklin to The Allman Bros.
After visiting a studio there last year while on tour, I got the idea to bring a group of Tulsa musicians, still carrying the torch of the legendary Tulsa Sound, and toss them in that iconic space and setting along the Tennessee River and see what would happen.”
What happened is some funky, laid-back blues that sounds like Delaney and Bonnie as much as anybody else. Here’s a slinky little tune called “Boxmeer Blues” that reminds me of “She Caught the Katy.”
Here’s a blurb from Ronnie Baker Brooks’ website: He was born in Chicago, and started playing guitar around age six. At 19, he joined his father (Lonnie Brooks), who by then had influenced some of the most well-known bluesman of our history: Jimmy Reed, the Fabulous Thunderbirds, Johnny Winter, and Junior Wells. For 12 years the two would tour together, putting Ronnie out front with Eric Clapton, B.B. King, Buddy Guy, and Koko Taylor. In 1998, when he was 32, his father told him to go solo.
This tune, “Show Me.” is from his album Times Have Changed. Not only does this song feature the legendary Steve Cropper but the album also features Felix Cavaliere and Bobby Blue Bland. This tune has some of that soulful Stax blues feel. Maybe this is Brooks’ answer to Thornetta: