Thursday, August 30, 2012

Sean Carney's Life of Ease

Winner of the 2007 International Blues Challenge, The Sean Carney Band is no Johnny come lately. Carney has been an important part of the Columbus, Ohio blues scene for many years and participated in the IBC several years ago backing up finalist Teeny Tucker. Carney has recorded several times and his CD, Life of Ease (Nite Owlz Records), demonstrates the appeal of his music that led to his winning in Memphis.

Carney is a terrific guitarist with a crisp, swinging attack, a solid songwriter and his band is a terrific band that can cover a lot of territory from uptown jump blues and swing to a more downhome groove as on Pennies & Teardrops. As a vocalist Carney evokes Jimmy Witherspoon on the title track and at other times suggests Duke Robillard, like on the atmospheric I’ve Got a Gypsy Woman. Solid remakes of T-Bone Walker’s I Know Your Wig Is Gone and Pee Wee Crayton’s When It Rains It Pours, shows that Duke Robillard isn’t the only one who can channel Walker’s pioneering and still influential style.

The guest spots include the late Joe Weaver’s marvelous updating of Casey Bill Weldon’s Outskirts of Town (credited to Louis Jordan), Willie Pooch’s fine treatment of Lowell Fulson’s Tramp and Teeny Tucker, daughter of Tommy Tucker, filling up the room with the fine I Live Alone. Special note should be made of the fine playing of saxophonist Gene Walker, a King Curtis protege on three selections.

Thirteen track are studio recordings, and three are live recordings, including two renditions of two songs among the studio recordings and this is an excellent disc that is available from

This review originally appeared in the March/April 2007 Jazz & Blues Report (Issue 291). I believe I may have purchased the CD. Sean continues to be active and among the most interesting persons involved in the Columbus Ohio blues scene and this CD and others by him are available at and other stores and as downloads. Below is a video of Sean at the 2007 International Blues Challenge.

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