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Crow Jane Alley

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Album Review

It's hard to get a handle on what to call Willy DeVille's multi-genre music, though AMG writer Thom Jurek's description of "Spanish soul-inflected love songs" comes close. "Muddy Waters Rose Out of the Mississippi Mud" would be perfect for Rusty Kershaw, God rest his soul, a nice complement to the laid-back cover of Jay & the Americans' Top Three hit from 1964, "Come a Little Bit Closer" — its presentation a wonderful nod to songwriters Wes Farrell and Bobby Hart. The evolution is startling 28 years after Mink DeVille gave listeners "Let Me Dream if I Want To" on the classic punk LP Live at CBGB's, and DeVille emerges as a major interpreter. The four minutes and 31 seconds of Bryan Ferry's "Slave to Love" may be one of the most distinct and unique adaptations of a Ferry tune put on record to date. Outside of the covers, the other eight tracks are Willy DeVille originals, "(Don't Have A) Change of Heart" liberally borrowing the melody from Kenny Rogers' hit "Lucille." "Trouble Comin' Every Day in a World" slinks and lurks around the corner with another stylistic change, sounding a bit like that other Willie from the same era, Bostonian Willie "Loco" Alexander. A sticker on the CD says "First studio album in 5 years!" — though wasn't his previous "studio" disc (not including the live albums) Horse of a Different Color released in 2001? No matter; Crow Jane Alley is a very respectable collection from this journeyman, starting off with the single "Chieva" and continuing with DeVille's novel exploration of sound and clever merging of styles.

Customer Reviews

"Hurt Me Like You Did!"

.."Here I Am; Baby!"..On the "Downside Of Town"!-{Willie; Where have you been hidin' out; Man?}-Mink DeVille got all caught up in the "Punk-Rock/New-Wave" Movement in the early 1980's; But the Smooth Soul Stylings of Willie DeVille & Co. were not really Punky or Wavy; More like Ben E. King backed by a Tejano Bar Band!-"Crow Jane Alley" finds a much more Mature and Mellowed Willy DeVille; Still doing the "Spanish Stroll" down the avenues of: Country; Blues; R&B and especially; Ol' Greasy Heartfelt Soul!-If you like; Robbie Robertson; Al Kooper; Los Lobos; Doug Sahm or Bob Dylan; Take a walk down "Crow Jane Alley" and listen in "Right There, Right Then!"...by Grimmbo.

I want more Willie Deville!

Since Willy died the out of print cds have skyrocketed in price. He is almost unknown in his own country.There are other sites with downloads. Get with it itunes.

Biography

Born: August 25, 1950 in Stamford, CT

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '80s, '90s, '00s

The roots of American music, including the blues, R&B, and Cajun music, gave Willy DeVille's (born William Borsey) late-'70s punk band, Mink DeVille, its unique flavor. A quarter of a century later, DeVille continued to blend musical traditions and postmodern intensity. A self-taught guitarist, DeVille found his early inspiration in the blues of John Hammond Jr., Muddy Waters, and John Lee Hooker. Determined to become a musician, he moved to London in 1971, hoping to latch on with a British band....
Full Bio
Crow Jane Alley, Willy DeVille
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