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I started a quest to find terrific blues music and incredible musicianship when I was just a little kid. I also have a tremendous appreciation of fine musical instruments and equipment. One of my greatest joys all of my life was sharing my finds with my friends. I'm now publishing my journey. I hope that you come along!

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Sunday, April 6, 2014

Luther Dickinson - Rock 'n Roll Blues

Rock 'n Roll Blues
Dear Music Lovers —
You all know Luther Dickinson from the North Mississipi Allstars — the world-boogie power trio that has been touring the world and breaking down barriers for more than a decade now.  You may also know Luther from his work with the South Memphis String Band, or his two Grammy-nominated solo albums.
New West Records has just released Luther's latest, ROCK 'n ROLL BLUES.  Luther describes it as "folk country punk blues."  It's acoustic guitar, upright bass, drums and vocals, recorded directly to 8-track tape at Zebra Ranch, the Dickinson family studio in Coldwater, Mississippi.  Helping out are celebrated Memphis actress/singer-songwriter Amy Lavere (bass, vocals), Otha Turner's granddaughter Sharde Thomas (drums, fife, vocals), and longtime cohort Lightning Malcolm (bass, drums). By the way, these drums are just drums — there is not a cymbal on the entire record!
Anyone who knows anything about Jim Dickinson and his sons understands that the mark of the rebel is deeply embedded in their DNA.  When Luther and Cody Dickinson produced the first North Mississippi Allstars album in 2000, they took traditional hill country blues, amped it up, gave it a mighty twist to the left, and proceeded to demolish what was left of any pigeonholes people had in mind for them.  Luther has always created music from his heart, without trying to fit into a mold or cater to anyone else’s expectations.  ROCK 'n ROLL BLUES is a superb and timely addition to Luther’s musical canon, rolling up the punk rock exuberance of his early years and the blues and folk music traditions that are his birthright into a careening autobiographical album, full of wit, irony, and joy.
Needless to say, this album covers a lot of ground stylistically. For those of you looking for BLUES CONTENT, may I suggest:
Track 3: YARD MAN
It's a finger-picked country blues reminiscent of Sid Selvidge and Jimmie Rodgers, telling the story of a musician who is not inclined to cut the overgrown lawn, no matter what his old lady says:  "I ain't no yard man, ain't no yard man's son / Got a pocket full-a money, she won't pay to get it done / Bought a ridin' lawn mower, the dirty sumbitch won't run..."
This is pure Juke Joint Punk Blues, with Luther rocking the one-string coffee can Diddley Bo. It also has the distinction of being his 4-year-old daughter's favorite song.
Track 5: MOJO MOJO
The hypnotic, marching groove of MOJO MOJO features Sharde Thomas singing background vocals and playing the cane fife that belonged to her grandather, the late, great Otha Turner.
To hear and/or buy the album, CLICK the links below:
Luther is currently on tour with Southern Soul Assembly, which features Luther Dickinson, Anders Osborne, JJ Grey (of MOFRO), and Marc Broussard — see tour dates below. 
Thanks and Best To All,
  — Richard Rosenblatt
     Vizzable Music / VizzTone label group
Release date 3/18/2014
some early press..

Rollicking, raw and teeming with palpable punk energy one minute, laid back and burning with the tranquil beauty of a southern sunset ...Made with just acoustic guitar, vocals, stand-up bass and drums, the album of acoustic punk country blues offers a side of Luther seldom seen before.
    — New Releases Now

The music on Luther’ Dickinson’s Rock and Roll Blues is every bit as earthy and organic as its cover art would suggest- a guitar planted in an expanse of verdant countryside. Teeming with the spontaneity of the moment, the album is a series of pithy vignettes extracted from every phase of this not-so-young man’s life, back before he formed the North Mississippi Allstars carrying on through his current state as a family man and musician working regularly on a diverse roster of projects...  Its subdued acoustic textures markedly different than the cauterizing electricity of The North Mississippi Allstars’ World Boogie is Coming, Rock and Roll Blues nevertheless vividly demonstrates the maturation process of the committed but fun-loving musician that is Luther Dickinson, wholly and completely of a piece with previous solo endeavors such as Onward and Upward as well as Hambone’s Meditations.
    — Glide
Luther Dickinson's new solo album, Rock 'n Roll Blues, will be released March 18 on New West Records. Made with just acoustic guitar, vocals, stand up bass and drums, the album of self described "folk punk country blues" offers a side of Luther seldom seen before. From the propulsive beat and unbridled sound of opener "Vandalize" to the rambunctious acoustic strut and barbed chorus hook of "Bar Band," which relives Luther's dues-paying youth playing battles of the bands and plastering Memphis with concert flyers to "Blood 'n Guts," chronicling the transience of a life spent in a van driving from one gig to the next, it's clear this is a unique chapter in the acclaimed Southern musician's songbook.
     — Guitar Player
In this climate of over produced, slicked up Americana, Dickinson’s dialed down approach is charming, rustic, uncluttered and delivered with the honesty of a guy who wouldn’t know how to do it any other way.
    — Hal Horowitz, American Songwriter
Because a lot of great songs have been written about the crossroads, but none of 'em cover what happens next quite like this: "Got the busted eardrum, bad news baby, bloodsuckin' bed bug, rock 'n roll blues."

    — Andy Langer: The Best Songs Of March 2014 - Esquire

Apr 05 • T Bois Blues Festival 2014 • Cut Off, LA

Apr 07 • Texas Union Ballroom • Austin, TX

Apr 08 • House Of Blues • Boston, MA

Apr 09 • Concert Hall, Norwalk City Hall • Norwalk, CT

Apr 10 • The Grand Opera House • Wilmington, DE

Apr 12 • Howard Theatre • Washington, DC

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