|Davis`s own playing career started with the harp when he was five years old. In addition, he sang in the church choir. In the early sixties, he and his brothers had a band, which was involved in the lively blues world of St. Louis. They played as the house band at Tabby`s Red Room for no less than 18 years.
By his side, Davis has a drummer, John Gerritse, and guitarist Jan Mittendorp. Together they make an inspired trio contributing to an album full of interesting and versatile music. Davis has warmth and depth in his voice and his harp has a rich sound to it.
Raw, even primal blues proclaimed in tunes such as "Dirty Dog", "Who Stole the Booty" and "Stay From The Casino" meet with funky "Hot Foot" and the Jimmy Reed-style soft blues tunes "Want Nobody Tell Me How To Live My Life!" and "It`s a Shame".
What might be the highlight of the album is the soul style of "Why You Wanna Do It". Based on a two-chord change swaying back and forth is brilliant in its simplicity. All in all, the music is stripped to its barest and at times creates spaciousness in its monotony.
The spare guitarism of Jan Mittendorp contributes to the authenticity, communicating finely with Davis`s harp-playing. A good band needs a good drummer, and that is what John Gerritse most definitely is. His expressive playing combined with ingenious shifts of rhythm patterns such as found in "Stay From The Casino" give a brilliant rhythmic dimension to the record. The sound of his drums is captured in all its glory at the beginning of "I`m so Tired".
"Name Of The Game" consists entirely of originals by Davis-Mittendorp-Gerritse. They sure have managed in recording an album of authentic blues music in 2008 - one can only imagine how well they work in a live situation.
REVIEW BY L. RAUDAS
TRANSLATED FROM FINNISH BY TOMI CHRISTIANSSON
Boo Boo Davis: Name Of The Game. Black and Tan Records, 2008
Boo Boo Davis (Vocals, harp), John Gerritse (drums, percussion), Jan Mittendorp (guitar)
Produced by Erik Spanjers, Boo Boo Davis, John Gerritse, Jan Mittendorp
Links: Boo Boo Davis website and MySpace, Black and Tan Records
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|Authenticity is the Name of the Game
19 December 2008
From primitive drive to soft blues goes Boo Boo Davis´s newest album "Name Of The Game". The unclad, bassless trio plays with an appropriate less-is-more attitude, still giving depth to the big picture.
Mississippi Delta-born and bred Boo Boo Davis`s latest album "Name Of The Game" is steadfast, primitive blues. Its grooves contain both harshness and soulful moodiness.
"Name Of The Game" is the fourth CD by Davis released by Black and Tan Records. Davis grew up with the blues all around him. His father Sylvester Davis played multiple instruments, and jam-sessions at home had friends like Elmore James, John Lee Hooker and Robert Pete Williams - nice guests indeed!