It has been a couple of weeks since I posted, and the stack of worthy discs just gets higher. Lately I've been listening a lot to these fine cds: Kenny Neal's latest "Hooked On Your Love," Tim Woods' "The Blues Sessions," and Chrissie O'Dell & One Hot Mess "If I Had A Dime." All three are really terrific work, with great singing and playing and a lot of blues fire.
Kenny Neal continues to be the pre-eminent Louisiana swamp bluesman out there, carrying the banner from his father Raful Neal. Raful gave Buddy Guy his first break into the business. I've been listening to Kenny Neal since 1989, and he continues to hold the blues banner high. Kenny continues another family tradition, with nephew Tyree and brother Frederick Neal on keyboards and brother Darnell Neal on bass. Top cut to my ears is " New Lease on Life," which sizzles. On Blind Pig.
Hard to believe this is Tim Woods' debut cd after playing guitar for 25+ years. Here he gathers a star-studded band in "The Blues Sessions," including David "Honeyboy" Edwards, Ike Stubblefield, Bob Stroger, Lee Williams and Big Jack Johnson. With players like that it would be easy to get overshadowed on your own record, but Woods' voice ties everything together. Includes a terrific "Deep Ellum Blues" and a wonderful cover of WilIie Dixon's "It Don't Make Sense You Can't Make Peace." Honeyboy Edwards sings lead and plays guitar on three songs here. This one will appeal to everybody on your Christmas list. On Earwig Music.
Chrissie O'Dell & One Hot Mess' "If I Had A Dime" is also a debut cd. When you hear Chrissie sing a few lines of the title track you'll know why she has suddenly been discovered--she is the best new female vocalist out there in years. She reminds me of Koko Taylor. Check out the song here "Sleep All Day"--a hot honking tour de force. The One Hot Mess band includes John Bendy on guitar, Bill Quinn on organ, Craig "Clutch" Costa on bass and Papa John on drums. They make a straightforward righteous blues. Catch her at the beginning of what we all hope will be a long and lustrous career. Indy release.
These three are all well worth your time and your money. You can buy these at