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Mary Bridget Davies - Wanna Feel Somethin’

Self release

10 songs; 42:14 minutes

Styles: Traditional Blues, Blues Rock, Soul and Funk influenced Blues, Standout Female Vocals

People listen to blues music for a variety of equally powerful reasons. Some reconnect with their childhood and teenage roots through this genre, while others, as artist E.G. Kight states, “let the blues move [them] to a better attitude!” Still more, including this reviewer, peruse the blues because they “Wanna Feel Somethin’” -- in this case, overwhelmed with joy at the quality of this self-produced album! Ohio’s award winning Mary Bridget Davies and her band, crowned second-place winners at the 2011 International Blues Challenge, deliver a masterful presentation of ten songs--six originals and four covers. Three stand out in both instrumentation and Mary’s sizzling vocal prowess backed by singing from all band members:

Track 2: “Won’t Pay You Mind”--This original track should hit radios as soon as possible, because it’ll instantly catch fans’ attention! It’s a down-and-dirty swinging, upbeat selection featuring Chris Hazelton on organ, Joe Voye on drums and guest stars Pete Carroll on trumpet, and Nick Rowland on saxophone. One will be hard-pressed NOT to sing along as they chant “I’ve been thinking” toward the end. As intended, “Won’t Pay You Mind” is a blues number that chases sadness away as fast as one can dance!

Track 4: “Real Thing”--The band’s cover of Kim Massey’s rhythm-and-soul hit is nothing short of amazing. What strikes one from the start are Gary Roberts’ ominous bass riff and understated intro vocals by Davies: “If you think you can just fool around with me and then go, you know you’ve got another think coming…And I brought my band to help straighten you out.” The funky guitar and horn sounds of the 70’s are back in vogue in the two-thousand-teens, and “Real Thing” proves it with a vengeance!

Track 8: “Trick the Devil”-- Dave Hayes’ slide guitar opening and solo on this New Orleans-inspired swamp-stomp is absolutely wicked. That’s a marvelous thing, because it propels original number “Trick the Devil” to the top of this album’s play list. Mary describes a mysterious man with a “walkin’ cane made of alabaster bone” and Miss Betty, who’ll “tell you you’re money’s cursed -- give it to her to get clean….” It’s a warning against trifling with the dark arts, because “...[if] you mess with hoodoo, it gonna mess with you….”

Mary Bridget Davies’ website states that she was “always fond of singing,” so she “went to Robert Lockwood Jr.’s jam night at the original Fat Fish Blue in Cleveland.” Returning after her first week, she found that “after sitting in on just one song, she was hired into her first band on the spot.” Also, out of around 150 hopefuls, she was chosen to portray Janis Joplin in the off-Broadway musical “Love, Janis.”

These are tremendous feats for a tremendous vocalist whose songs, covers or not, make one “Wanna - [and definitely will] - Feel Somethin’.” My preference, give us one more original instead of a cover or the Eagles’ “Take It to the Limit,” but either way, it’s such a great album!

Reviewer Rainey Wetnight is a 32 year old female Blues fan. She brings the perspective of a younger blues fan to reviews. A child of 1980s music, she was strongly influenced by her father’s blues music collection.

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