8 O’CLOCK IN THE AFTERNOON
RATTLESNAKE SHAKE–NOTHING TO DO WITH LOVE–DON’T TAKE–WHAT’S GOING ON–HERE I GO AGAIN–DON’T OWE YOU A THING–HEART WITH A MIND OF ITS OWN–PLACE IN MY HEART–WICKED GAME–A MILLION MILES AWAY
Jim Singleton always called the South his home—Dumas, AR, to be exact–but, growing up, he was drawn to the sounds of the British Invasion bluesmen. While making a documentary about Clarksdale, MS, and its deep connection to the blues, he enlisted his friend and British guitar hero, Bernie Marsden, to make an album that pays tribute to music icons from both sides of “the Pond.”
The result is “8 O’Clock In The afternoon,” seven covers and three originals that put the emphasis squarely on the blues, and, more importantly, the “Clarksdale connection” in blues history as it relates to the UK bluesmen.
Listeners, draw your own conclusions regarding the nature of the subject matter of the leadoff “Rattlesnake Shake,” written by Peter Green, but don’t miss out on the powerhouse guitar licks Jim lays down. He veers into a stomping, Hill-Country vibe with the freight-train chug of Gary Clark, Jr.’s “Don’t Owe You A Thing,” while his echo-soaked take on Chris Isaak’s “Wicked Game” fits in perfectly.
There is some fine balladry, also. Gary Vincent’s “Don’t Take your love away from me” is spiced up by well-placed dollops of accordion from Mark Yacavone. And, Charlie Musselwhite adds a mournful harp on the minor-key read of Bernie’s tale of one man’s undying love for a woman, “I’ll always have a Place In My Heart for you.”
Our favorite was easy. Done up in the tradition of Fleetwood Mac’s “Oh Well” is “What’s Going On,” written by Rory Gallagher, with its staccato, stop-and-go rhythm and vocal pattern that gives way to a barrage of fretwork fireworks.
Jim Singleton, with “8 O’Clock In The Afternoon,” effectively connects the dots of blues history from the Delta to the UK. This one should not be missed! Until next time…Sheryl and Don Crow, The Nashville Blues Society.