Casey Hensley review…November 10, 2017….

CASEY HENSLEY

LIVE

FEAT. LAURA CHAVEZ

VIZZTONE RECORDS  VT CH 01

BIG MAMA’S COMING HOME–PUT YOUR LOVIN’ WHERE IT BELONGS–YOU CAN HAVE MY HUSBAND–SPELL ON YOU–HARD HEADED WOMAN–DON’T WANT IT TO STOP–I JUST WANT TO MAKE LOVE TO YOU–HOT! HOT! HOT!–VOODOO WOMAN–TOO TIRED–BALL AND CHAIN

Imagine, if you will, a young woman of the blues with the powerhouse vocals, brass, and sass of Big Mama Thornton, Candye Kane, and Janis Joplin, all rolled into one package!  If you can grasp that scenario, then you can sho’ nuff dig Casey Hensley.  She’s got it all, folks–chops, power, stage presence, you name it–and it’s all on full display on her latest set for Vizztone, “Casey Hensley Live, Featuring Laura Chavez.”  Herein, Casey rolls thru three originals and eight crowd-pleasing covers in front of a raucous crowd at the Thunderbird.  Laura’s guitar is the perfect complement for Casey’s vocals–they never get in each other’s way–and we also have Candye’s son, Even Caleb Yearsley, on drums, Marcos C. on bass, and the inimitable Jonny Viau on sax.

Fans, it doesn’t get much better than this for a live show.  You get a taste of everything–jump-blues, slow blues, and rockers, done up right by world-class players.  They kick off with one of Ms. Thornton’s best, as Casey tears up the vocal, announcing “Big Mama’s Coming Home.”  She bumps and grinds her way thru her original beat-down of a cheatin’ lover, telling him to “come on home and Put Your Lovin’ Where It Belongs!” Laura gets in some cool twangin’ guitar and Jonny’s sax adds the spooky vibe to Screamin’ Jay’s “I Put A Spell On You,” and they all totally funk up the joint on Koko’s “Voodoo Woman,” who “looks thru water and spies dry land!”

Those West Coast players know how to rock a jump-blues, too.  Check out another of Casey’s originals, with Laura’s mile-a-minute guitar burning up “Hot! Hot! Hot!,” and keeping that groove rolling on a song we first learned as kids from Presley’s “King Creole” soundtrack, all about that “Hard Headed Woman and a soft-hearted man!”  Casey closes the set as it began, with a torrid, smokin’ read of Big Mama’s (by way of Janis’) “Ball And Chain.”

Our favorite was too easy.  You can actually hear the women in the crowd singing along with Casey on the chorus of Dorothy LaBostrie’s classic, “You Can Have My Husband, but please don’t mess with my man!”

Casey Hensley’s talents are undeniable.  One thing we failed to mention, too, is that she is only 25 years old!  Enjoy a star in the making with this incendiary live set!  Until next time…Sheryl and Don Crow, The Nashville Blues Society.

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