Album Reviews

Eddie Cotton

One At A Time

Artist:     Eddie Cotton

Album:     One At A Time

Label:     DeChamp Records

Release Date:     07/30/2015


Eddie Cotton’s sound and groove falls somewhere between those hallowed halls of Willie Mitchell’s Royal Studios in Memphis and the equally renowned Malaco Studios in Jackson, MS, near Eddie’s hometown of Clinton. This is Cotton’s second album on Grady Champion’s label, and features many of the same contributors from his 2014 release, Here I Come. Between the two records, Cotton has gathered some serious momentum in a short time. The aforementioned album was a 2014 Blues Blast Music Award nominee for Soul Blues album, and his band won 2015’s International Blues Challenge. Cotton is the classic Mississippi bluesman: raised on gospel as a minister’s son by day, playing his blistering electric guitar in the juke joints at night.

You can easily detect B.B. King’s influence in Cotton’s piercing, short, staccato-like guitar, but especially on “Better Deal,” where the back door man seems to win out. Cotton’s voice has that high timbre reminiscent of Al Green, most notably on two of the album’s best tracks: “Dead End Street” and “Ego At Your Door.”  The B3 organ and horns along with the background vocals of label mate JJ Thames give the album that deep soulful vibe. Cotton penned all 14 tracks that cover the usual themes of heartbreak, cheating and the hardships of making a living with a nice pacing of shuffles and ballads. Stay with the album; it’s lengthy, but there’s a nice payoff in the scorching closer, “The War Is Over,” with its lyric, “Let’s make love, the war is over.” It’s so refreshing to hear Cotton embracing the fundamentals of soul/blues and keeping these sounds fresh and vibrant.

– Jim Hynes

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