Blues & Soul – New Orleans Division
Los Po Boy Citos – Hasta
Allen Toussaint – Songbook
Trombone Shorty – Say That to Say This
Walter Wolfman Washington & The Roadmasters – Howlin’ Live at dba New Orleans Davell Crawford – My Gift to You
comment: Los Po Boy Citos takes the crown with their wide-eared synthesis of, hold on, boogaloo, salsa, surf, second line, funk, NOLA indian music, blues, and soul.
Albert King – Born Under a Bad Sign
Chocolate Milk – Chocolate Milk
James Booker – Classified
Messengers Incorporated ?- Soulful Proclamation
Womack & Womack – Conscience
comment: King’s cornerstone blues date greatly benefits from remastering; the Chocolate Milk set fills a large gap in their digital discography; Conscience is one of my all time favorites; and Soulful Proclamation was the rarity that rose to the top of my estimation.
comment: a tie at the top! Holley, better known as folk sculptor, is compelling and unique, and he is so in the entire sweep of musical artistry! See Lonnie Holley: The Insider’s Outsider, New York Times; Self-Made Man NPR; Ms. Monae is deservedly both a cutting edge artist and superstar; the Blind Boys celebrate their 70th anniversary this year.
Magic Sam – Live At The Avant Garde (Amazon)
Eric Bibb – Jericho Road
Ben Harper and Charlie Musselwhite – Get Up!
Gwyn Ashton – Fistful Of Blues
Tamara Peterson w. Lucky Peterson Band – Whatever You Say (Amazon)
Arthur ‘Big Boy’ Crudup – Sunny Road (Amazon)
The Slide Brothers – Robert Randolph Presents The Slide Brothers
comment: Magic Sam, departed to St. Peter’s houseband in 1969, is captured in a trio format in 1968. It’s no knock on his contemporaries to note that they just do not make Chicago blues records like his or that of Crudup anymore. Ashton is a terrific electric slide player from the UK, and The Slide Brothers feature three pedal steel players, two stand up and play and one sits down.