Foto Recensie: Mary Flower - Livin’ With The Blues Again

Mary Flower – Livin’ With The Blues Again
Format: CD / Label: Little Village Foundation Records
Releasedatum: 25 juli 2019

Tekst: Iain Patience

Any new release from Portland, Oregon-based acoustic picker Mary Flower is surely something to be welcomed and, dare I say it, treasured. Flower only delivers a new album when the time is right for her and this is her first offering for some years, since ‘Bywater Dance back in 2015.

Flower is a national acoustic finger-picking champion who moves effortlessly with guaranteed class and quality from her favored acoustic guitar to stunningly soulful and at times deceptively understated but always on the button lap-slide when the force takes her. It’s just way too easy to think of female US acoustic blues-based pickers as being limited to , say, Cindy Cashdollar, Rory Block or Bonnie Raitt. All of these are vitally important players in the modern blues world but Flower can and often does outstrip them all with her beautifully nuanced fretwork and a voice that matches her picking perfectly every time.

With her feet firmly rooted in the roots and early blues tradition, she is easily one of the best, if not the very best ragtime-blues picker out there. With ‘Livin’ With The Blues Again,’ she once more turns out a genuinely superb bit of acoustic guitar with blues and its ragtime-cousin in full focus and delightfully delivered and produced.
Tracks include some immediately demanding opener, Crooked Rag,  the gospel tinged When Gabriel Comes Blowin` On His Horn and some straight, full on blues with the title track. An old Flower favorite also gets another welcome run with River of Joy. Indeed, this album represents the well-loved cannon of music that Flower has played and championed in recent years both in the studio and on the road, a near-perfect 10-track sampler for those who have yet to discover this hugely talented US picker, most accurately described by no less a figure than Jorma Kukonen, a guy who knows his stuff, as a “national treasure in your own backyard.” But don’t just take Jorma’s word, get out and try and buy this album while you can.

01. Crooked Rag
02. Baby Where You Been?
03. Refuge
04. When Gabriel Comes Blowin’ On His Horn
05. Barrelhouse
06. Livin’ With the Blues Again
07. River of Joy
08. Left All Alone Again Blues
09. Meet Me in the Bottom
10. See See Rider
11. There’s a Bright Side Somewhere
12. Waltz

Website: Mary Flower

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