Memphis Grease by John Németh on Apple Music

13 Songs

EDITORS’ NOTES

Soul man John Nemeth kicks off the aptly titled Memphis Grease with a convincing cover of Otis Rush’s “Three Times a Fool,” which answers any questions about whether this Idaho–born former truck driver can hold his own among the Memphis elite. Working with The Bo-Keys (a group of veteran Memphis players who made their names backing Al Green, O.V. Wright, and Rufus Thomas), Nemeth sang his heart out at producer Scott Bomar’s Electraphonic Studios for three intense days. Though the album primarily features Nemeth’s wise-beyond-their-years originals, the three covers—the aforementioned Rush tune, Howard Tate’s “Stop,” and Roy Orbison’s “Crying”—lend a depth of experience and illustrate smart taste. There are no cut corners here. The horns crank up classic Stax-like riffs, and the rhythms always land back in the pocket where good soul music finds the elasticity to move forward. Nemeth’s own “Sooner of Later” and “If It Ain’t Broke” sound as if they could’ve been written back in Stax’s mid-'60s prime.

EDITORS’ NOTES

Soul man John Nemeth kicks off the aptly titled Memphis Grease with a convincing cover of Otis Rush’s “Three Times a Fool,” which answers any questions about whether this Idaho–born former truck driver can hold his own among the Memphis elite. Working with The Bo-Keys (a group of veteran Memphis players who made their names backing Al Green, O.V. Wright, and Rufus Thomas), Nemeth sang his heart out at producer Scott Bomar’s Electraphonic Studios for three intense days. Though the album primarily features Nemeth’s wise-beyond-their-years originals, the three covers—the aforementioned Rush tune, Howard Tate’s “Stop,” and Roy Orbison’s “Crying”—lend a depth of experience and illustrate smart taste. There are no cut corners here. The horns crank up classic Stax-like riffs, and the rhythms always land back in the pocket where good soul music finds the elasticity to move forward. Nemeth’s own “Sooner of Later” and “If It Ain’t Broke” sound as if they could’ve been written back in Stax’s mid-'60s prime.

TITLE TIME
5:04
3:12
4:05
3:26
4:41
3:38
3:57
3:01
5:31
4:34
4:34
4:30
3:34

About John Németh

Born in 1976 in Idaho, John Németh grew up in Boise, where his first exposure to music was singing in the Catholic Church. He branched out from there, though, and was playing in local bands as a teenager. He was 17 when a friend, Tom Moore, exposed him to the blues, and together they formed Fat John & the 3 Slims, which is still regarded as a legendary band in the Boise region. Németh began playing with the Junior Watson Band in 2002 as well as gigging with his own band, the Jacks. A vocalist with great range, ability, and soulfulness, Németh had also developed into a top-notch blues harmonica player, which led to a spot with Anson Funderburgh & the Rockets, where he filled in for the great Sam Myers. A self-released album with the Jacks, The Jack of Harps, appeared in 2002, followed by a second self-release, Come and Get It (which featured the Junior Watson Band) in 2004. That same year Németh left Boise and relocated to San Francisco. In 2006 he signed with Blind Pig Records, which released Magic Touch (produced by Anson Funderburgh and featuring Junior Watson on guitar) in 2007. Name the Day!, also on Blind Pig Records, followed in 2010. The Scott Bomar-produced Memphis Grease, recorded in Bomar's Electraphonic Studio in Memphis with the Bo-Keys, arrived early in 2014. ~ Steve Leggett ~ Steve Leggett

Top Songs

Top Albums

Listeners Also Played