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Album Review

This collaboration is the first full-length release from like-minded bluesmen guitarist Corey Harris and pianist Henry Butler. Although they had previously played together on live dates, the only other time they appear on CD is on Harris' Greens From the Garden. These 15 tracks cover more ground than the mere term "blues" implies. The duo recalls not only the best of traditional piano/guitar music of the '20s and '30s, but also New Orleans soul, barrelhouse, ragtime, and Delta blues. To their credit, Harris and Butler have the ability to bring these traditions into a modern context while retaining the soul that some modern blues recordings lack. Not only are duet settings heard but a few solo spots are featured. The playing is phenomenal, which shouldn't overshadow the emotional vocal performances, including the a cappella gospel on "Why Don't You Live So God Can Use You?" that closes out this highly recommended disc.

Biography

Born: 21 February 1969 in Denver, CO

Genre: Blues

Years Active: '90s, '00s, '10s

Corey Harris has earned substantial critical acclaim as one of the few contemporary bluesmen able to channel the raw, direct emotion of acoustic Delta blues without coming off as an authenticity-obsessed historian. Although he is well versed in the early history of blues guitar, he's no well-mannered preservationist, mixing a considerable variety of influences — from New Orleans to the Caribbean to Africa — into his richly expressive...
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Vu-Du Menz, Corey Harris
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