R.L. Burnside is a welcome anomaly in the blues world: he's an old guitarist from Mississippi trained by the great Mississippi Fred McDowell, but was only recently "discovered" and stays far removed from tedious conventions. He draws inspiration from such luminaries as Muddy Waters and Elmore James, but he reaches for their spirits instead of trying to match their guitar solos.
Burnside's guitar teacher Burnette appears here performing his signature song "Maybelle" in one of the two ways he could play it. Burnette's music is steeped in the regional tradition marked by the droning rhythms of the fife and drum bands.
And Woods is, of course, best known for his musical association with Fred McDowell. But this writer also shares the sentiment that his music sounds more in the vein of John Lee Sonny Boy Williamson's music than any other. His harmonica phrasing and playing is strong on "Going Down South" and the music industry lost a true gentlemen and legend when he passed on in Feb. of
This is a 15-track import from the Netherlands, which also contains some fine contributions from harmonica ace, Curtis Salgado.
This review is copyright © 2000 by Matt Alcott, and Blues On Stage, all rights reserved. Copy, duplication or download prohibited without written permission. For permission to use this review please send an E-mail to Ray Stiles.
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