Canadian Ron Campbell's love for the blues is obvious and his release Pure Blues Guy is a testament to his appreciation of the genre. Of the thirteen tracks on this collection, Campbell penned eleven, plays dobro, drums, harp, 12-string, tap box, piano, provides vocals, performs engineering duties and produced the effort.
Three of the original tracks stand out heads and shoulders above the rest of the songs. God Watches Over You And Me was the first track to really draw me in. It has a feeling which is much more personal and convincing. I'll bet this is the real Ron Campbell. On Delivery Man Campbell does duty on piano, harp and vocals. This contemporary hokum style piece is a showcase for all of his strengths: solid piano, just-right harp accompaniment and a catchy, well crafted lyric. So Far Away, So Long Ago is another selection that shows off Campbell's song-crafting skills. The instrumentation is simple, clean and a perfect backdrop to avoid competing with the lyrics. This is probably the best composition on the CD.
Unfortunately, the weak link on Pure Blues Guy is the vocals. Campbell doesn't have a strong voice. There is no primal or inner emotion revealed in his delivery but still he manages to communicate his love and appreciation for the blues.
Edited by: David N. Pyles
Copyright 2009, Peterborough Folk Music Society.
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