Sugar Pie De Santo's has a new album on her managers own label Jasman Records, the label owned by James C. Moore. Sugar Pie who in the 50's and 60's recorded on many label including a long stay with Checker/Chess, has gone back to many of her old songs and has reworked them into a more modern setting. Sugar Pie has always written her own songs, and has over time had songs covered by The Dells, Little Milton, The Whispers etc. This new album contains 11 songs and except for 3 of them, they were all originally recorded by sugar Pie in the 50's or 60's, Sugar Pie also wrote all of the songs on the album. Wardell Quezerque produced the album, which was recorded in New Orleans. The project has been recorded at a laid back kind of pace, with a bluesy kind of funky R&B feel to it and also has some good musicians it.
The album starts with "Bread & Butter" which is a walking pace kind of arrangement with drummer Bernard Johnson laying down a strong backing to Sugar Pie's talking intro. Sugar Pie does veer towards Country with "Mama Didn't Raise No Fool" and "Crazy Loving," the latter being one of the best songs on this CD with it's lovely brass section and Charles Moore piano work.
The brass section shine on "Jump In My Chest" with Sugar Pie giving us a powerful vocal, which beguiles the fact that Sugar Pie is 64. "Use What You Got" probably sounds better now than when she first recorded it in 1964, Carl Lockett supplies a guitar solo but the good bass work of Brain Quezerque has to have a mention. The album suffers a little bit for sounding the same, but the good playing of the band gives the album a good solid feel and Sugar Pie's vocals are on form.
Produced by Wardell Quezerque.
Jasman Records 10004
This review is copyright © 2000 by Dave Thomas, and Blues On Stage, all rights reserved.