Little Boys Blue review…May 9, 2018….

LITTLE BOYS BLUE

W/KID MEMPHIS

HARD BLUE SPACE

VIZZTONE RECORDS  VT-LBB-18

SIX FOOT DOWN–LOVING KIND–BLUES BUG–HARD BLUE SPACE–MORNING TRAIN–COLD INSIDE–MIGHT AS WELL–GOT A MIND OF YOUR OWN–IF THE BLUES START CALLING–GOING BACK TO MEMPJHIS

Little Boys Blue have long been one of our favorite bands, hailing from the Jackson area in West Tennessee.  They already had a rock-solid lineup featuring drummer Mark Brooks, bassman Dave Mallard, vocalist and harp man JD Taylor, and guitarist Alex Taylor.  Ol’ JD blew some harp back in the day with Jackson’s favorite son, Carl Perkins.   On their latest album, the fellows bring another famous player into the mix with guitarist John Holiday, a/k/a Kid Memphis.  The Kid played the role of Perkins in “Walk The Line,” so this ensemble has definitely got some of that Sun mojo working!  The ten band originals on which they collaborate is entitled “Hard Blue Space,” for Vizztone Records.

Leading off is a song that sounds as if it rose straight up from the Crossroads, as JD and his mournful harp vow to “call Mr. Funeral Man” and “dig my grave, Six Feet Down, since my woman ran off with another man!”  “Loving Kind” follows a more traditional blues path, while Dave Thomas and that rockin’ boogie piano will light up every juke joint dance floor from Bartlett to Beale on the classic drinking song, “Might As Well drink my blues away!”  Dave brings the B-3 to the party on “Got A Mind Of Your Own,” as JD continually asks a lover who’s actin’ mighty strange, “what in the world’s goin’ on?”  This one has a really cool riff supplied by Kid, too.  Kid’s slide over JD’s harp and vocal pushes our hero to beg his lover to come back home, as she’s got him between a “rock and a Hard Blue Place!”

Our favorite closed the set.  The loping beat of “Going Back To Memphis” finds JD lookin’ for a little girl down on Beale wearing her red high heels, but they stop off at 706 Union Avenue first, making this one sho’ nuff a Sun-drenched, Sun-blessed, Sun-of-a-gun!

For Little Boys Blue, it’s always been about the authenticity of their sound, and, to borrow a cliche’, “keep things real.”  With the addition of Kid Memphis, “Hard Blue Space” is that place where Beale Street intersects with the Crossroads!  Until next time…Sheryl and Don Crow, The Nashville Blues Society.

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