Top positive review
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A Really UP Blues Album
on 23 August 2004
R.L. Burnside sings with emotion, this man KNOWS BLUES, he has LIVEDBLUES, and STILL HAS HOPE ... tinged with an Alabama accent, he sings with a southern drawl, full of the realities of life. The liner booklet says it best (& I quote): "The last genuine performer of raw Mississippi hill country sounds as well as cutting edge crossover artist the blues has had in the past 30 years." Honesty, depth, detail, raw emotions, earthy statements: it's all here & more! Great lyrics, great slide guitar playing,too. "Too Many Ups" one of the tracks, is a play on words: "You gotta look UP to the man ... too many ups, too many ups, too many upside down", "You gotta coer up", "You gotta catch up", "You gotta get paid up", "Too many upside downs". Some other favorites are, the title song, "Wish I was in Heaven Sittin' Down", "Hard Times", and "Chain of Fools".
Let the lyrics of "Nothin' Man" tell his story:
"I never had a chance ... it never was fault MY fault. You can't arrest me. I pay the rent. I never wanted to be a BAAAD person. I wish my mama had loved me. You can't arrest me. It never was MY fault ... I never wanted to be a BAD person." The ambient music contrasts nicely with the words & lyrics, with a shadow of the underside of life - not far off from the truth. This is genuine, visceral music: FAT POSSUM RECORDS have provided us a vehicle to enjoy the music of this living legend of Mississippi blues. They have a great sense of humor, too. Inside the CD is a card to fill out with demographics, and a block of space, with the instructions: "trace your housekey here" YOU GOTTA LOVE 'EM!
Three "bonus" tracks are included: "Black Mattie" by Robert Balfour (a rather scarry piece of music & lyrics, too), "Pucker Up Buttercup" by Paul Jones, & my favorite of the three, "Laugh to Keep from Cryin'" written & sung by Burnside's ado[pted son, Kenny Brown, a great talent in his own right who has learned & apprenticed with this MASTER OF MISSISSIPPI BLUES, THE LIVING LEGEND! Erika Borsos (bakonyvilla)