Polly O’Keary review…April 30, 2017….

POLLY O’KEARY

AND THE RHYTHM METHOD

BLACK CROW CALLIN’

HARD HEARTED WORLD–A MAN WHO CAN STAND–RED LIGHT–BLACK CROW CALLIN–YOURS TO LOSE–ONE LIFE–RECONCILED–I DON’T UNDERSTAND–PLAN B–I AM THE ONE

Polly O’Keary knows a little bit about the blues.  She grew up in a log cabin with no plumbing and no electricity, and  began her music career working bars in Mexico.  By age 19, she had an eighth-grade education and a husband in prison–tell me you couldn’t get 29 blues songs out of  all that!  But, Polly’s a mighty strong woman, and she’s persevered.  She’s now one of the Pacific Northwest’s most respected women of the blues,  working on a Ph. D., and with three albums already to her credit.

Her fourth will hit the streets on May 12, 2017, and is entitled “Black Crow Callin.”  Polly’s on bass and vocals, and she’s joined by The Rhythm Method of David Miller on guitar and vocals, and Tommy Cook on drums and vocals, with a few special guests along the way.

Polly has a voice equally at home screamin’ and cryin’,  shoutin’ and testifyin!”  She lays it all on the table with the slow-burnin’ tale of that time when “we  cross that River on that final day,” when all will be “Reconciled.”  A shot of Stax-era soul infuses a shout-out to an overbearing, possessive lover, prompting our heroine to plead for “A Man Who Can Stand on his own, and who can stand by me.”  “Red Light” has some fine buzzsaw guitar over Polly’s anxious vocals and Norm Bellas’ B-3 as she continually gets stuck in crosstown traffic en route to a steamy rendezvous with a lover!

A lover with an ever-insatiable palate for different women is the cheatin’ subject of “I Don’t Understand,” while the funky Powerhouse Horns help Polly to heed her grandmother’s advice on men–“you always gotta have a Plan B!”

We had two favorites, too.  The horns are all over Polly’s sage advice on the dangers to folks who build barriers in a relationship, making the other person “Yours To Lose.”  And, the set begins on a rockin’ note, even tho the subject matter is somewhat intense, dealing with the myriad of problems facing today’s society.  With Eric Robert on barrelhouse piano, Polly is “a soft-hearted woman in a Hard Hearted World.”

As it is with all great musicians, Polly O’Keary pulls out all the stops with her clever, topical original songwriting and first-class musicianship for “Black Crow Callin.”  This set is primal, passionate blues from a woman who’s seen hardship first-hand and come out on the other side!  Until next time…Sheryl and Don Crow.

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One response to this post.

  1. Wow, thanks! (Polly here.) There is nothing more flattering to a songwriter like me than someone who listens to each song and notices lyrics and the horn arrangements and things like that. Thank you for your attentive ear and your kind words!

    Reply

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