Steve Conn review…February 11, 2019…

STEVE CONN

FLESH AND BONE

NOT REALLY RECORDS   NRR 1922

FAMOUS–FLESH AND BONE–DOING THE BEST I CAN–YOU DON’T KNOW–ANNALEE–LET ME CRY–AROUND AND AROUND–SING ME TO THE OTHER SIDE–SATISFIED–FOREVER SEVENTEEN–GOOD TIMES ARE COMING–WITHOUT A TRACE

Many ascribe to the credo that God has a sense of humor, and music is His way of expressing it.  That makes Steve Conn one of His finest messengers.  We first heard of Steve several years back, with his “River Of Madness” album, and its nods to New Orleans and Fat Tuesday.  That theme runs thru his latest set, “Flesh And Bone,” twelve originals that show him as a master teller of tales.  With an inviting voice that begs you to come along for the ride and dance with the Zulu Queen, these songs celebrate good times, sorrow, hopes, dreams, and the relative fragility of life.

Steve is on vocals, keys, accordion, and alto sax, and is joined by a host of the best session players on the planet.  We got Joe V. McMahan and Sonny Landreth on guitars, Bryan Owings on percussion, Dave Francis on bass, and a slew of others. Steve rides that Mardi Gras groove on the leadoff cut, as our hero wants to smell the roses while he’s living, but has resigned himself to the fact that “I’ll be Famous when I’m dead!”  This one has Sonny Landreth on slide guitar, too.  The title cut has a jazzy feel, as Steve knows that,”sooner or later, we all gotta go home,” and “I’m just borrowing this Flesh And Bone.”  Sonny appears on slide and Steve is on accordion on a tongue-in-cheek look at the many varied world religions on “Around And Around,” while Steve details the story of a child who, despite various letdowns throughout his childhood, is always told “Good Times Are Coming,” whether true or not.

We had two favorites, too.  First love lost and the pain that goes with it is documented by a saved picture that shows her as “Forever Seventeen.”  The set closes with perhaps its most powerful piece, a somber look at taking one’s own life, where “no one noticed Jesse’s tears,” “Without A Trace.”

Steve Conn lives in Tennessee, with his head in Colorado, and a heart that belongs in New Orleans.  Enjoy the music of a true national treasure with “Flesh And Bone.”  Until next time…Sheryl and Don Crow, The Nashville Blues And Roots Alliance.

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