This is the sixth album for this riverbed gravelly voiced singer who has a gifted way with words. He has a tendency to fly just above the treetop level, however many of his followers are rabid for news about new songs or happenings (they follow him at The Taproom, a cutting-edge file exchange website http://tr.jeffblack.com/index.php/enter/). Just look at the home page and you get a feel for what his man has to offer, be aware it is not for the timid as few punches are pulled. He is joined on this collection of songs but such fellow musicians as Matraca Berg, Sam Bush, and Jerry Douglas among others and it is about as solid a collection of songs you are going to find. There is a down to earth feel here that extends a hand out and welcomes the listener in to the proceedings.
There are 12 gems here for the listener to learn to delve into and begin to get acquainted with the craft with which he writes. He wrote all the songs, sings them, and he also produced the disc. For the record he also plays guitars, piano, keyboards, bass, harmonica, programming and percussion here. The songs are physically powerful, lucid, and exceedingly well crafted stories sung with his own sense of the song; the music of his songs tends to mirror their lyrical content. The songs are as personal or as universal in meaning as the listener allows them to be. This is someone who doesn't get the attention he deserves, nor do his songs get the recognition they should except from his fellow songwriters. One of those wonderful seemingly unassuming riches that kind of sneaks its way into your consciousness and won't leave. Treat yourself to this outstanding piece of work.
Edited by: David N. Pyles
Copyright 2013, Peterborough Folk Music Society.
This review may be reprinted with prior permission and attribution.
Website design by David N. Pyles