Georgie Bonds review…November 10, 2014…

GEORGIE BONDS

STEPPING INTO TIME

8TH TRAIN RECORDS

ST JAMES INFIRMARY–THE BLACKSMITH–WHAT MORE–LORD OH LORD–DAILY NEWS–DYIN’ IS THE EASY WAY–CALLING YOUR NAME–GOING SHOPPING–OUT OF THE FRYIN’ PAN–I NEED SOMEBODY–HURRICANE BLUES–DIMPLES

Georgie Bonds grew up in the Germantown section of Philadelphia, finding a fascination with horses who were ridden by folks in a nearby park, so much so that he purchased his own horse at age twenty-one.  He even took up blacksmithing as a trade, becoming, indeed, a modern-day “urban cowboy.”

He also learned to play guitar and sing for his own entertainment, until life got in the way, as it always does.  A near-fatal reaction to some prescription drugs nearly did him in, but he persevered, even thru some subsequent jail time.  This man has some serious “street cred,” (as if he needed any!), and his practice has paid off with the release of “Stepping Into Time,” ten originals and wo covers that find him expounding on love, life, his livelihood, and topical looks at the decay of today’s society, his powerful vocals and tasteful backing musicians bringing it all home.

You gotta love the double-entendres’ that ride over the slide of Neil Taylor and Buddy Cleveland’s harp as Georgie’s swagger lets us know that his tongs are in one hand and his hammer will find the spot!  A jazzy riff crafted by Dave Renz’ sax has Georgie admitting that he had some past transgressions, but once you get “three rooms and a good woman, What More does a poor man need?”

The brooding, minor-key slow-blues of “Daily News” tells a sad tale of our own moral decay, on display each night on TV.  “Hurricane Blues” can be added to that same metaphorical list, as Georgie warns of those “storm clouds comin’ and the skies are getting dark!”  The set closes with Georgie taking an adventurous romp thru the stop-time endless boogie of the Hook’s “Dimples.”  (Please continue to listen after it’s over for a bonus cut…).

We had two favorites, too.  Hard-core funk rocks the tale of poor Georgie, who has all the money he needs, but “still can’t find nothing to fix my heart.”  And, curiously, Georgie opens with perhaps the most poignant cut on the set,  an a cappella version of “St. James Infirmary.  This is a maudlin song indeed, and Georgie’s sparse, jaw-dropping vocal read only adds to the power of the performance.

Georgie Bonds has lived to realize two dreams—to be a cowboy and a singer.Add to that the fact that he’s overcome more adversity than most people can imagine, making “Stepping Into Time” a highly-personal statement and an excellent set of blues!  Until next time…Sheryl and Don Crow, The Nashville Blues Society.

 

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