Honeyboy Edwards review….August 1, 2016…

DAVID “HONEYBOY” EDWARDS

I’M GONNA TELL YOU SOMETHIN’  THAT I KNOW

PRO SHO BIDNESS RECORDS  PSB 1752

RIDE WITH ME TONIGHT–THAT’S ALRIGHT–LITTLE BOY BLUE–YOU’RE THE ONE–GOIN’ DOWN SLOW–COUNTRY BOY–CATFISH BLUES–APRON STRINGS–SWEET HOME CHICAGO  BONUS TRACK:  THAT’S ALRIGHT

David “Honeyboy” Edwards was truly the last of the original Delta bluesmen.  Born in 1915, he was a contemporary of Muddy,  Wolf, Robert Jr. Lockwood, and even Robert Johnson.  On September 24, 2010, at the G Spot in Los Angeles,  Honeyboy gave a spirited performance of ten songs of his own as well as those of his contemporaries, which, sadly, would serve as his last filmed and recorded set.  “I’m Gonna Tell You Somethin’ That I Know” is raw, powerful, and emotional blues from a man who was there at the very beginning.

Honeyboy is on guitar throughout.  On cuts one, two, and three, he is backed by Jeff Dale on second guitar and old friend Michael Frank on the harp, giving these songs a real country-blues, juke joint feel.  For us, the highlight here was a deep, slow-burnin’ take on Jr. Lockwood’s “Little Boy Blue.”

For the remainder of the program, Honeyboy is backed by Jeff Dale And The South Woodlawners, with Darryl Lieberstein on bass, Clark Pardee on drums, and Geoff Mohan on the harp.  The longer Honeyboy played throughout this set, the looser he got, and the more fun he seemed to have, and it showed in the performances, especially the good-time blues of his original, “Apron Strings,” and again on “Sweet Home Chicago.”

As much fun as it was to listen to these cuts on CD, the accompanying DVD is virtually priceless.  The musical performances were filmed with the emphasis on Honeyboy.  As such, you can see his techniques, chord changes, and get a feel for his at-times unorthodox singing style.  But, the real story is after the singing is over and the camera keeps rolling.  Honeyboy recounts tales from his youth, runnin’ with Charley Patton and Robert Lockwood, and, without giving too much away,  he gives an account of the night Robert Johnson died!

Sometimes his timing was a bit off-kilter, and he didn’t always play in the right key, but, hey, he was 95 years old when this was filmed!  He was there when what we know as the blues began, and “I’m Gonna Tell You Somethin’ That I Know” is a fitting tribute to one of the true pioneers of the blues, David “Honeyboy” Edwards!  Until next time…Sheryl and Don Crow.

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