The Norman Transcript

Breaking News

N-town reviews

August 9, 2013

Music review: Buddy Guy pays homage to career in newest album

NORMAN — Album name: Rhythm & Blues (2013, Silvertone Records/RCA Records)

Musician: Buddy Guy

Why you should listen: With a discography that counts one record for every year in a half-century long career you might think Buddy Guy would be coasting at age 76. You would be wrong. The six-time Grammy winner has released not just a new album, it’s a double platter set with a total of 22 tracks.

Before even cracking the CD package open you can tell Guy is still ripping it from the dynamite black and white polka dot suit he’s wearing for the cover art. He has been recognized as a National Medal of the Arts recipient and inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Back in the day he inspired young men just starting out such as British upstarts the Rolling Stones. Decades later the Stones were still honoring him with a guest appearance in their Martin Scorsese movie “Shine a Light” performing Muddy Waters tune “Champagne and Reefer.”

“Rhythm & Blues” has a reflective quality in its songs that comes from looking back fondly at a career of music well-played and life well-lived. Several of the tracks feature collaborations with other artists including surprises such as Kiwi country singer Keith Urban. It’s a sage nod to the symbiotic relationship between the blues and country. They sing heart-felt duet “One Day Away” about not wasting a single precious moment in life and especially the perils of taking loved ones for granted.

“Meet Me in Chicago” is fitting homage to the city that Guy left Louisiana for after hearing Muddy Water’s siren song. To this day Guy operates one of the Windy City’s few remaining blues clubs. Buddy Guy’s Legends hosts the boss for an annual performance residency every January.

The most important song on this album is “My Mama Loved Me.” Guy gives credit to his mother for making him what he is today. “I’m so glad she raised me up right,” Guy howls in advance of a blistering guitar solo that would make any mama proud.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
N-town reviews
  • Book review: Kidd delivers thought-provoking novel on slavery

    by Amber Hodge Book: The Invention of Wings (2014, Viking) Author: Sue Monk Kidd Why you should read: Kidd might be known for her worldwide hit “The Secret Life of Bees,” which released in 2002 and spent more than two years on the NY Times ...

    April 11, 2014

  • Book review: Philomena a sad, worthwhile read

    by Amber Hodge Book: The Lost Child of Philomena Lee (2009, Macmillan) Author: Martin Sixsmith Why you should read: Originally published in 2009, “Philomena” tells the true story of Michael Hess, who was a lawyer, and later deputy chief ...

    April 11, 2014

  • Music review: Johnny Drummer brings spark, swagger

    Musician: Johnny Drummer Album name: Bad Attitude Why you should listen: It’s probably reason enough to spin this record that producer Michael Frank wrote a thousand word introduction for the liner notes. The man who founded Earwig Music ...

    April 11, 2014

  • Music review: Helen Kelter Skelter offers psychedelic gem

    Musician: Helen Kelter Skelter Album name: Self-titled Why you should listen: Helen Kelter Skelter is a Norman band comprised of Eli Wimmer, Cody Clifton, Nathan Harwell, Jay Jamison and Tim Gregory. Their band’s name is a tongue twisting ...

    April 11, 2014

  • Book review: Anna Quindlen creates poetic narrative in Still Life with Bread Crumbs

    Book: Still Life with Bread Crumbs (2014, Random House) Author: Anna Quindlen Why you should read: It’s hard to find authors who have the kind of talent that brings life to inanimate objects. Fortunately, Anna Quindlen is one such writer ...

    March 14, 2014

  • Book review: Under the Never Sky a clever sci-fi

    Book: Under the Never Sky (2012, HarperCollins) Author: Veronica Rossi Why you should read: “Under the Never Sky” is a clever young adult novel built around a distopian future akin to “The Hunger Games” or the “Divergent” series....

    March 14, 2014

  • Music review: Goodnight Moonshine offers fresh sound

    Musician: Molly Venter and Eben Pariser Album name: Goodnight Moonshine Why you should listen: It’s the rare 21st century professional musician who has just one project. Molly Venter and Eben Pariser are no exceptions. Venter played here ...

    March 14, 2014

  • Music review: Eddie Ate Dynamite is explosive, twisted listen

    Musician: Jason Vivone and the Billy Bats Album name: Eddie Ate Dynamite Why you should listen: All you have to do is glance at this album’s cover art to know it’s going to be a twisted listen. A stick of high explosive in a hot dog bun on ...

    March 14, 2014

  • Book review: Rainbow Rowell paints perfect love story

    Book: Eleanor & Park (2013, St. Martin’s Press) Author: Rainbow Rowell Why you should read: After 11 weeks of gracing the NY Times Best Seller list for young adult novels, “Eleanor & Park” currently rests at No. 8 on the charts. With its ...

    February 14, 2014

  • Book review: JJ Abrams creates literary masterpiece

    Book: S. (2013, Little, Brown & Company) Authors: J.J. Abrams and Doug Dorst Why you should read: Created from the mind of J.J. Abrams, producer of hit films and television shows such as “Lost,” “Star Trek Into Darkness” and “Mission: ...

    February 14, 2014