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Davis Coen - Blues Lights For Yours And Mine


Davis Coen’s fifth album release Blues Lights For Yours And Mine shows the bluesman branching out from the country blues sound that is the center of his music and including Memphis and New Orleans flavors in addition to the strong down-home blues flavor that fans have come to expect from him. Coen is equal parts songwriter and interpreter and brings excellent readings of original and cover songs to this project.

His initial inspirations were Louis Armstrong, Big Bill Broonzy, Howlin’ Wolf, Jimi Hendrix, and Mississippi John Hurt, which gave Coen a deep launching pad for creating his own roots music gumbo. He also spent years as a solo act, honing his country and postwar blues chops over the course of countless gigs on the East Coast. With this latest release, Coen draws on influences as diverse as Tom Waits and Lightnin’ Hopkins to create his best batch of blues music yet.

Davis is a fine guitarist, with a soulful, non-showboating style, but the songs here are what really shine. “Basement With The Blue Light On” is his tribute to 60’s soul music and has an understated groove that pulls listeners in almost subliminally. The low-down and swampy “Mambo Jumbo” is possibly the best tune on the album and goes down like Rain Dogs-era Waits with a bit more guitar.

The whole set is really about vibe and groove and Coen ends up with a more original sound as a result than he would by going the guitar hero route. Less is more sometimes (most of the time, really) and Coen works that angle to great effect. Recent years have found Coen touring the world, playing in films, and contributing music to the DVD release of Martin Scorsese’s PBS special The Blues and deservedly so. Davis Coen has built a career the hard way, by being an artist, and his commitment to this music is apparent in every note he plays

Reviewed by Mike O'Cull

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