Down Home Blues
- by Paul Shugrue "Out of the Box"
"A common misconception about the blues is that it makes you feel bad. M.S.G. The Acoustic Blues Trio understands the uplifting power that music has in any form and their second cd, Done Spoke My Mind packs that kind of emotional wallop. The range of sentiments from love, grief, reverence, outrage and LOL humor relates to what we all have in common. And isn't that what the blues is all about?
With a mix of traditional and original tunes and an instrumental lineup that includes not only guitar and harmonica but rubboard, bicycle horn, tin cup, bones and even kazoo, Done Spoke My Mind varies widely in its arrangements, or as one of the songs says "It's always something, unless it's something else." M.S.G is based in Hampton and specializes in the Piedmont Blues style, which originated in Virginia and is closely related to folk music. The band's name comes from their initials, Jackie Merritt on harmonica, Miles Spicer on guitar and Resa Gibbs on practically everything else. They trade off vocals with Resa's deep dramatic tones perfectly offsetting the more playful styles of Jackie and Miles.
"Mean Church People" features hilarious interplay between its two singers and a shout out to "Brother Pat." "Penniless Rag" has the band passing the hat and pleading "give until it hurts, I want you to feel my pain!" "God Don't Like It", "Racetrack Blues" and "I Need More Trouble Like That" are critical of certain lifestyles while subtly celebrating them at the same time. The ambitious "The Katrina Flood" rewrites the traditional ballad, "A Mighty Storm" into an indictment of those at fault in New Orleans. Contemporary in subject yet traditional in form, M.S.G. The Acoustic Blues Trio lives up to its mantra as the "non-toxic preservative of the blues."
Listen for songs from the album Done Spoke My Mind by M.S.G. The Acoustic Blues Trio all this week on Paul Shugrue's new music show "Out of the Box" on Hampton Roads public radio 89.5 WHRV Mon. through Thurs. from 7 to 9 p.m., Sat. afternoon from 1 to 5 p.m. and on-demand at whrv.org/outofthebox
DONE SPOKE MY MIND:
MEET ME IN THE MIDDLE:
Richmond Folk Music