Mighty Sam McClain review September 15, 2012…

MIGHTY SAM MCCLAIN

TOO MUCH JESUS (NOT ENOUGH WHISKEY)

MIGHTY MUSIC 103

WISH YOU WELL–MISSING YOU–CAN YOU FEEL IT?–FEEL SO GOOD–FEEL SO RIGHT–TEARS–STAND UP–REAL THING–USE ME–ROCK MY SOUL–HEY BABY–SO INTO YOU–WAKE UP CALL–TOO MUCH JESUS (NOT ENOUGH WHISKEY)–DANCE

 

Mighty Sam McClain began as did many of the great soul men of our generation–singing in church and gospel groups.  Sam’s voice ranks among the likes of Otis Redding, Solomon Burke, and O. V. Wright. His latest release, “Too Much Jesus (Not Enough Whiskey),” finds him in top form on fourteen cuts that mix blues, old-school soul, funk, and gospel.  In fact, on each one of the songs on this set, Sam’s deeply-rooted vibe of hope mixed with his love for spirituality shines thru like a beacon in the night.  This set also marks seventeen years that Sam and guitarist Pat Herlehy have shared the stage and written together.

 

The set starts off with a poignant “goodbye” song after the love affair is over,  “I Wish You Well.”  “Can You Feel It?” is an ultra-funky call for peace, while Pat’s call-and-response guitar over Sam’s vocals adds spice to “Stand Up”‘   “Wake Up Call” is Sam’s message to everyone that the Second Coming may be closer than we think.  And, the title cut could be Sam’s autobiography.  Once he swore off drinking and accepted Jesus, all his good-time buddies seem to have disappeared.

 

We had two favorites, too.  The powerful   “Missing You” finds another love coming to an end, and Sam tells his ex that his feelings are still strong, and he puts everything in God’s hands to “please make things clear,” especially since there are children involved.  And, Sam goes into deep-soul mode in a plea to keep his relationship intact with a lover, which, inevitably, leads to “Tears.”

 

Mighty Sam McClain has created an album that is a triumph of the human spirit and redemption, with his brilliant voice bringing it all home.  “Too Much  Jesus (Not Enough Whiskey) is not to be missed!   Until next time…Sheryl and Don Crow.

 

 

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