First Appeared in The Music Box, September 2004, Volume 11, #9
Written by John Metzger
On his seventh outing Legacy, Guy Davis sticks with his effective formula of blending a variety of well-chosen blues nuggets ó such as Mississippi John Hurtís Pay Day, Lightniní Hopkinsí Come Back Baby, and Skip Jamesí Cypress Grove ó with original compositions, none of which ever seem out of place and yet frequently offer a stark contrast to the older material. For example, I Just Canít Help Loving You occupies the terrain between the blues and classic soul; with its banjo and mandolin accompaniments, Iím Gone touches upon bluegrass; and on We All Need More Kindness in This World, Davis unleashes an uplifting, country-gospel gem. The highlight, however, is Uncle Tomís Dead, a wholly unique piece on which he and his son Martial deliver a cross-generational exchange of ideas about music and society, rapping their words over an old-time, acoustic blues groove. With lyrics that speak to the long history of the genre, itís this song that lends the set its title and makes the album a cohesive whole. As good as the rest of Legacy is, however, it still feels like a letdown after the bold inventiveness of its opening number.
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1 Star: Pitiful
2 Stars: Listenable
3 Stars: Respectable
4 Stars: Excellent
5 Stars: Can't Live Without It!!
Copyright © 2004 The Music Box