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Eric Bibb – Blues People (2014) [Official Digital Download 24bit/44,1kHz]

Eric Bibb – Blues People (2014)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/44,1 kHz  | Time – 59:39 minutes | 675 MB | Genre: Blues
Studio Masters, Official Digital Download  | Booklet, Front Cover | © Dixiefrog

Eric Bibb’s new album is both a tribute to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s “I Have a Dream” speech, and a homage to the original “blues people,” the Afro-American creators of a style celebrated today as part of the common heritage of mankind. “Blues People” is an album voluntarily bare, haunted by the spirit of the blues. Many good friends managed to join the recording sessions and brought their own contributions. They include The Blind Boys Of Alabama, Taj Mahal, J.J. Milteau, Popa Chubby, Ruthie Foster, Harrison Kennedy, Leyla McCalla, André De Lange and Guy Davis.

Eric Bibb’s version of the blues is hushed and elegant, as much or more about redemption as it is about despair. His best songs, often built on traditional patterns and rhythms, are wise and affirming, and they fall to the brighter and more hopeful side of the blues, a vision that makes him the spiritual descendant of Blind Willie Johnson, say, more than Robert Johnson. Bibb isn’t about to go down to the crossroads and make some deal with the devil. His version of folk-blues isn’t about that sort of stuff. It’s closer to gospel in tone, with a strong commitment to betterment and change, bereft of personal demons, and filled instead with cultural ones. Blues People has all of this on display. It’s calm, serious, warm, thoughtful, and wonderfully recorded (the album was produced by Glen Scott), and if it doesn’t expand Bibb’s musical template much, it isn’t supposed to, and it ends up being one of Bibb’s finest outings. Taking its title from Amiri Baraka’s groundbreaking 1963 book Blues People (Baraka was still LeRoi Jones when the book was published), the album is full of musical guests, from Taj Mahal to the Blind Boys of Alabama, but none of them capsize the emotional balance of the set, adding to, rather than detracting, from the songs they appear on. The album has a stark tone, but also a deep warmth, with songs like “Silver Spoon” (which features Popa Chubby), “Driftin’ Door to Door,” “Where Do We Go” (with vocal help from Leyla McCalla), and “Needed Time” (highlighted by clawhammer banjo from Taj Mahal and gorgeous vocals from the Blind Boys of Alabama) all giving off a calm, determined urgency. The emotional center of the set is undoubtedly “Rosewood,” the narrative story of Rosewood, a whistle-stop town in Florida that was the scene of a racially motivated massacre in 1923, and is a symbol of one of the lowest points in American history. In Bibb’s hands, the song not only recounts the story and its horrors, but also draws parallels between the evils of the slave trade and the persistence of intolerance and racism in the 21st century. ~ Steve Leggett

01. Silver spoon
02. Driftin’ door to door
03. God’s mojo
04. Turner station
05. Pink dream cadillac
06. Chocolate man
07. Rosewood
08. I heard the angels singin’ feat. Jean-Jacques Milteau and Blind Boys of Alabama
09. Dream catchers
10. Chain reaction
11. Needed time feat. Blind Boys of Alabama
12. Out walkin’
13. Remember the ones
14. Home
15. Where do we go


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