With over two decades of experience together on stages around the world and over a dozen major CD releases, Smokin’ Joe Kubek & Bnois King now bring the essence of their signature brand of Texas blues to Delta Groove Music. Close To The Bone presents the duo’s first unplugged album, played almost entirely on acoustic instruments, and brimming with smart, clever lyrics, toe-tapping grooves and interesting, memorable arrangements. Kubek and King are additionally joined by special guests Kirk Fletcher, Shawn Pittman, Paul Size, Big Pete, Bob Corritore, Randy Chortkoff, Fred Kaplan, Willie J. Campbell and Jimi Bott.
01 – The Civil Wars – From This Valley
02 – Shawn Mullins – Give God The Blues
03 – Buddy Miller – I Believe In You
04 – The Carolina Chocolate Drops – Lights In The Valley
05 – Phil Madeira – Mercyland
06 – Mat Kearney – Walking Over the Water
07 – Cindy Morgan – Leaning On You
08 – Amy Stroup – Fell Like a Feather
09 – North Mississippi Allstars – If I Was Jesus
10 – Dan Tyminski – Light Of Your Love
11 – Emmylou Harris – I Didn’t Know It Was You
12 – John Scofield – Peace In the Valley
As vocalist for the Mavericks, Raul Malo’s powerful voice and the band’s success in mixing vintage material with originals arranged in “classic” styles helped revive eclecticism in Nashville. Here, he and a first-rate band of acoustic sidemen run through country, pop, and folk standards, most (not all) well-known. Mixing Bob Dylan (“You’re Gonna Make Me Lonesome When You Go”) and Gordon Lightfoot (“Early Morning Rain”) with Jimmie Rodgers (“Waiting for a Train”) and the Louvin Brothers (“The Great Atomic Power”) is quintessential Malo. Having long ago channeled Roy Orbison’s vocal dynamics, it’s a given that he soars on “Blue Bayou” and the Henry Mancini-Johnny Mercer pop standard “Moon River.” He and the musicians rework Van Morrison’s “Bright Side of the Road” into a powerful gospel-style rave-up. Good as those three numbers are, the players don’t sustain that same level throughout. These supremely gifted pickers, all respected instrumentalists, play it safe with solos and arrangements. Even Malo himself seems uncharacteristically low-keyed. The music is certainly pleasant, but given such a stellar blend of talent, it’s also disappointingly predictable.
Slim White was a man born destined for country greatness. The progeny of a brief and bitter union between country music legends Kitty Wells and Conway Twitty, the son of Kitty Twitty soon found himself alone in Nashville, Tennessee, possessing only a half empty pint of Old Crow and a scratched recording of Buck Owens’ […]