Peter Karp review…January 22, 2018….

PETER KARP

BLUE FLAME

ROSE COTTAGE RECORDS

ROLLING ON A LOG–TRAIN O’ MINE–YOUR PRETTINESS–VALENTINE’S DAY–TREAT ME RIGHT–THE TURNING POINT–LOOSE ENDS–THE ARSON’S MATCH–FROM WHERE I STAND–YOU KNOW–THE NIETZSCHE LOUNGE–ROUND AND AROUND–YOUNG GIRL

Guitarist, singer, and composer Peter Karp has seen a lot in his twenty years in the bidness, and continues to be one of our favorite artists.  Born in Leonia, NJ, his mom exposed him to the British Invasion guys and Top 40 at an early age.  Later on, he moved to a trailer park with his dad in Enterprise, AL, and there he learned the music of the sweet homeland of the blues.  That clever mix of rock and blues  has long served him well, and is on full display on his latest album for Rose Cottage Records, “Blue Flame.”

These cuts are comprised of characters just like you and me, and they all have plenty of flaws to go around.  Whether he’s using “moonlit winter roads” to put a broken relationship back together down at “The Turning Point,” or John Zarra’s  mandolin and Peter’s own accordion to convey the message of love  from “days gone by,” “From Where I Stand,” you know he’s singing ’em straight from his storyteller’s soul.

Now, don’t be fooled—Peter’s got a lot of Jerry Lee in his DNA, too.  That hellhound-ish pull of good vs. evil rides the voodoo groove of the leadoff cut, “Rolling On A Log,” featuring harp from the iconic Kim Wilson.  Kim returns a bit later  on another rocked-up cut, this one conjuring up the ghost of Elmore James, “Arson’s Match,” with its chilling climax.

We’ve always enjoyed his Everyman’s quirkiness, too.  Dig Peter’s piano and Dennis Gruenling’s harp as they rock out “down at the Nietzsche Lounge,” and its after-hours denizens.  And, a lover with more bad qualities than good still managers to light Peter’s fire, as he loves “Your Prettiness,”  flaws and all.

In his younger days, Peter Karp was told by ol’ Willie Dixon himself to “be honest with yourself.”  Then, the songs will come, burning just like a “Blue Flame!”  Until next time…Sheryl and Don Crow, The Nashville Blues Society.

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