We are presented with eleven songs soaked in the Spanish Moss and ooze of the swamp on this disc. That is mixed with the grit that has made up the life of Bobby Rush, and the funky incendiary rhythms that inhabit his body, voila there is his music. This legend has 77 years under his belt and most of them have been spent honing his sound which is this mixture of swamp, down-home blues, Cajun, rock, soul and a heaping big old gumbo of other influences thrown in at various stages of his life. He is a dynamic mixture that brings true honest soul to every note he unleashes, whether it is coming from his guitar, harmonica, or his voice. He is a veteran of the Chitlin' Circuit, clubs and theaters that were around in the days of segregation for black audiences, where approval by the audience was essential to making a living, and performers had to prove themselves by winning over the gator hide tough patrons who were quick to judge but loved to embrace.
This disc puts on display the wide range of styles this man and his band have mastered and the way they can infuse that certain 'swamp' feel into all of those disparate styles. No matter the genre of music there is a sincerity and honesty in his voice that sells the song to the listener. Whether it is a slow blues exhorting lover not to cry or explaining the blues, there is that plea in his voice that satisfies. Though he is singing mostly of the love and loss and 'bowlegged women', when he takes up the praises of the Lord, as in his version of Swing Low, there is always the honesty that gives the song its credibility. He wrote eight of the eleven songs and co-wrote one of the others and all are sung with the same conviction. Haven't been to Louisiana in a long time and miss the rhythms? Try this one for a refresher, it is a warm and a revitalizing trip to the swamp filled with genuine music that will carry you.
Edited by: David N. Pyles
Copyright 2013, Peterborough Folk Music Society.
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