The CD title alone, Hush Your Fuss, one of the coolest to emerge in a long time, gives away the fact that this is the kind of down-home music that down-home music itself listens to. I mean, look at the titles listed below and see what I mean. Everything's raw, exuberant, proletariat, doggoned, greasy, and back-door familiar. Dave Riley plays guitar and sings in a gravid, back alley, sometimes hilarious voice that reaches back to when the blues first reared its hound-dog head and howled at the moon. No doubt in the world, once you lay an ear to any track here, that the guy's been doing this his whole life.
Then there's Bob Corritore, Riley's Sonny Boy Williamson, playing a running, loping, talkin', cryin' harmonica on each and every cut. This, y'all, is the kinda music, along with the whole Chicago sound, that set English heads on fire when they glommed it in the 60s and thus gave birth to dirty white-boy blues 'cause, well, they hadn't never heard nuthin' like that never before, y'all. And so were born Rod Stewart, Eric Clapton, John Mayall, Duffy Power, Stan Webb, and God only knows how many fine fine musicians. Music owes to music. It always has.
I think my favorite cut is No Cussin', 'cause it's a wry prohibition on one of my favored activities (my friends will tell you that I cuss like a g*dd*mn*d, m*therf*ck*ng, s*n*f*b*tch*n' sailor, have since about 14, and will never cease 'cause I love it). It's a go-to-church smiley faced finger-wag at we trash talkin' mofos from someone who's given up the practice but knows it well. Trotting through the rest of the CD, the infectious Home in Chicago with its irresistible shuffle and the solo acoustic My Baby's Gone are just as attractive. In fact, there ain't a clinker in the bunch, and the whole shebang ends with Laughing Blues, which is exactly what it says it is and would not have been surprising had it come out of a grinning John Hartford.
Edited by: David N. Pyles
Copyright 2013, Peterborough Folk Music Society.
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