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New Born

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Album Review

Guitarist Calvin Newborn will always be best known for being pianist Phineas Newborn's younger brother. A fine blues-oriented player who at various times hints at George Benson, Grant Green and B.B. King, Calvin has been obscure during much of his career but still plays quite well. His sidemen are good local players with organist Charlie Wood sounding the most accomplished and veteran pianist Donald Brown making some welcome appearances. The material on New Born includes blues, some 1970s CTI-type songs and soul-jazz. Although not essential, the results are enjoyable, with the liner notes answering the question "Whatever happened to Calvin Newborn?"


Born: 27 April 1933 in Whiteville, TN

Genre: Blues

Years Active: '50s, '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

The often overlooked brother of Phineas Newborn, guitarist Calvin Newborn has almost as much command of his instrument as his pianist sibling. He's an excellent melodic interpreter, plays with great fluidity and blues sensibility, and can smoothly execute complex chord progressions or subtly accompany vocalists. Newborn's problem has been a lack of a recorded legacy and his willingness to remain in Memphis, where he's played in local clubs and with various groups for several decades. Newborn worked...
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