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Big Mama's Door

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Album Review

The debut recording of 33-year-old Hart is extraordinarily simple and simply extraordinary. Except for three cuts on which he's joined by Taj Mahal, Big Mama's Door is just Hart on acoustic guitar and vocals, and he's not doing anything fancy — just playing prewar-style blues, mostly in a percussive Delta manner, recorded live to two-track. Yet he succeeds so well in blending technique and feeling, structure and spontaneity, tradition and freshness that he produces a minor gem of a blues record, evocative of the blues masters of the 1920s and '30s. He covers Leadbelly, Blind Willie McTell, Charley Patton, and the Mississippi Sheiks and does originals that replicate older blues idioms, not just in the notes but in the nuances, and in the personal commitment he brings to the material.

Customer Reviews

A Blues Gem

This album is an undiscovered masterpiece. You will be transported in time while listening to this album.

DR awkward

one of the best albums I own.

amazing stuff

This is one of the most listenable blues albums to come around in years - Hart is amazing and lifts these tunes into the 21st century, without losing the original old-time feel and drive. Great stuff!


Born: March 2, 1963 in Oakland, CA

Genre: Blues

Years Active: '90s, '00s

Guitarist, singer, and songwriter Alvin Youngblood Hart is continuing in the path laid down by acoustic blues practitioners like Taj Mahal, Guy Davis, and other '90s blues revivalists, but his roots go back much further than that, to the classic stylings of Bukka White, Charley Patton, Leadbelly, and Blind Willie McTell. Born in Oakland, CA, Hart accompanied his parents on summer trips to his grandparents' home in the hills of northern Mississippi, and it was there that his passion for acoustic...
Full Bio