Ivor S. K. review…April 6, 2016….




Ivor Simpson-Kennedy hails from Sydney, Australia, and is one of a new generation of blues players from “down under.”  He now claims New Orleans as his “second home,” primarily because of the spiritual connection between his music and that of the Big Easy.

When you listen to Ivor play the blues, you immediately get a mental image of the pre-WWII Delta masters such as Son House, Bukka White, and those raw plantation recordings the Lomax family did of Muddy.  His debut EP, “Delta Pines,” is five original songs that show an old-school soul in a contemporary bluesman’s body!  He has a uniquely-burnished vocal style, perfectly suited for these tunes.  His guitar playing is crisp, clean, and clear, and you can hear a fine example of this in the laid-back instrumental, “Pelican.”

All the masters used a touch of topical humor in their blues, and Ivor is no different.  Fact is, he’d rather have a drag from his favorite “herb,” “Missus Green,”  than get caught up in the drama of “Miss Beer,” “Miss Rum,” and “Miss Absinthe!”

The highlight for us was the closing title cut.  A percussive ode to all things Mississippi, it takes you on a mystical musical journey from Vicksburg to Indianola, up to Helena, Clarksdale, and “where Johnson sang his song” and made that infamous deal.

The “Delta Pines” are calling, and Ivor S. K. is heeding the call.  He has a firm grasp on the styles of the masters, and this is a mesmerizing, powerful, debut indeed!  Until next time…Sheryl and Don Crow.


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