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Dave Arcari - Got Me Electric

Buzz Records

Dave Arcari’s CD sounds like it’s straight out of Greenville, Mississippi rather than this Scottish guitarist’s Glasgow. Dave Arcari has released a CD with a baker’s dozen of ragged and rough-hewn blues built around his National steel guitar, and he’s an in-demand, award-winning bluesman across the pond. Last year, Dave was a featured player at the North by North East festival in Toronto (Canada’s response to the call of Austin’s SXSW), and he was a finalist in the best male solo artist category in the United Kingdom Indy Music Awards. He’s touring 150+ nights a year throughout the UK, with stops in Germany, France, Estonia, and Finland. Dave also has a considerable rock resume, but I’m glad that he’s focused on that National (as opposed to those everpresent Marshall stacks).

Got Me Electric is Dave’s got four other well-regarded blues CDs (Blue Country Steel, Something Old/Something Borrowed Volumes 1 and 2, and Come With Me), and I hope that his latest Buzz records release gets him greater recognition and airplay stateside.

There are 10 original cuts on Got Me Electric, but especially appreciate his fine, gentle, and nuanced playing on the classic “Soul of a Man,” and ragged, forceful delivery on “One More Heartbreak.”

Fans of troubadour-styled acoustic blues will warm to the story behind “Parcel of Rogues,” the upbeat, country-blues inflected “Hear Me Coming,” and the plugged-in and ragged (guitar done Hound Dog Taylor-style, vocals stretched to their breaking point a la the Wolf) tribute to Robert Johnson, “Walkin’ Blues.”

This year, Dave will play the prestigious Smokie Blues Festival in Carnoustie, and the bill also features international blues acts like Papa Mojo, Dr. Bendix, and one of my favorite young guns of British blues, Ian Siegel. Dave’s keeping some pretty good company, and I’m glad he got himself electric.

Fair warning: if you like your blues smooth with crooning vocals, I’m sorry to say that this CD is not for you. However, if you appreciate blues played on a National steel guitar with a few rough edges now and then with vocals to match, I highly recommend Got Me Electric. .

Reviewer Eric Steiner is the President of the Washington Blues Society, the proud recipient of a 2009 Keeping the Blues Alive Award from the Blues Foundation. For more information, you can email Eric at and visit

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