Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Corey Stevens Albert King Tribute

Corey Stevens was born in Illinois and moved to the Los Angeles area after graduating college and looking at his album covers is one who would be linked in among the post-war Stevie Ray Vaughan blues-rockers. While not being familiar with much of his catalog, 2007's Albertville (Ruf), a tribute to albert King, is worth a mention.

This is a recording where Stevens channels Albert King's guitar style and often the arrangements are based on King's originals. Its a program of songs I am generally familiar with a couple of exceptions such as A Real Good Sign, and Another Pretty Face. It is certainly nice to hear Stevens do his straight rendition of Breaking Up Somebody's Home and That's What The Blues Is All About. I may have heard one or two of his prior recordings but his restrained, slightly muffled vocals certainly emulate King's down-home, laid-back singing. Stevens adds his own licks on guitar in addition to channeling King’s style on selections as well, so he goes beyond simple imitation. Stevens doesn't rush the tempo or rock out on the performances either. Cold Women With Warm Hearts, with its mid-tempo having obvious appeal to the swing dancers.

Albertville may not be an essential blues album, but Stevens' affection to the late blues legend is evident on this heartfelt tribute.

I believe I may have received a review copy from a publicist.

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