Album Reviews

The Soul Of John Black – A Sunshine State Of Mind (Yellow Dog)




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The Soul of John Black A Sunshine State Of MindSummer has passed, but if you’re looking for a way to hold on to that breezy, relaxed summer feeling, look no further. John Bigham, the force of the Soul of John Black, offers a lighthearted, smile-inducing set of songs that will linger in your head for days. They’re a fusion of vintage R&B—classic Stevie Wonder, Al Green and Lenny Kravitz—with hints of the blues sprinkled in. “Oddly enough, I didn’t get into really deep old-school blues until I was working with Miles and he recorded songs with John Lee HookerI also figured that if his music and Miles Davis’ could blend so beautifully, I should be able to find my own way of combining everything that I love,” said Bigham.

“Lemonade” and “Johnny Bear (Give It to Me)” represent the blues, while most of the other tunes represent the unmistakable feel-good R&B that’s colored Bigham’s material throughout his previous releases. It’s a soul/roots sound that is accessible and acceptable for a range of radio formats. It makes you long for the days when you could find music this good on mainstream stations. Be sure to keep this one with you to play whenever you need to lift your spirits.

– Jim Hynes

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