Wednesday, 29 June 2011
This'll get everyone talking
The contradiction of a white middle class man singing these songs that were born out of the struggles of the Southern blacks early in the last century, is not lost on Laurie. I was not born in Alabama in the 1890's, he writes in the sleeve notes. I've never eaten grits, cropped a share or ridden a boxcar. No gypsy woman attended my birth and there's no hellhound on my tail. I am a white, middle class Englishman openly trespassing on the music and myth of the American South.
The amazing thing is that the actor does this all so well and has produced a damn fine blues album. OK his vocal range may be limited but through a shrewd choice of songs and a great backing band he's come up with something quite essential. Opening track, St. James Infirmary, with its fine piano intro, sets the scene for a surprisingly authentic sounding blues set. And I defy anyone not to be moved by his reading of Six Cold Feet - it'll send shivers down your spine.
Below I have embedded a video of Laurie performing Swanee River, which is track 7 on this brilliant little blues album.
Prepare to be amazed.