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Norman John Darwen
  • Male
  • United Kingdom
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Norman John Darwen posted a blog post

BOBBY MESSANO – Bad Movie (Prince Frog Record Company BM1-41517)

 Guitarist, singer and bandleader Bobby Messano has many years experience of working with rock artists like Steve Winwood and country artists like Jimmy Wayne and Rodney Atkins. Yet in his own right he is known as a contemporary blues artist, and certainly the first few tracks here point to him as an accomplished blues-rocker, with an influence from the British blues-boomers of the late 60s, and Jimi Hendrix (try ‘Why Water A Dead Rose’ for the latter). The vast majority of this album’s fifteen…See More
Wednesday
A blog post by Norman John Darwen was featured

DAVIS COEN – These Things Shall Pass (Soundview SP 1008)

 Here’s a varied CD of inspirational sacred music, covering a wide range of styles from traditional country spirituals ‘What A Friend We Have In Jesus’ and ‘Old Rugged Cross’ and the pure country cover of the title track (previously covered by Johnny Cash and Hank Snow) to the Memphis soul-inflections of former Jackson Southernaire Willie Banks & The Messengers’  ‘Working For Jesus’ and the vintage rhythm and blues sound of 'Lord, Let Me Do Right' via the almost honky-tonk sound of ‘Saint…See More
May 11
Norman John Darwen posted a blog post

DAVIS COEN – These Things Shall Pass (Soundview SP 1008)

 Here’s a varied CD of inspirational sacred music, covering a wide range of styles from traditional country spirituals ‘What A Friend We Have In Jesus’ and ‘Old Rugged Cross’ and the pure country cover of the title track (previously covered by Johnny Cash and Hank Snow) to the Memphis soul-inflections of former Jackson Southernaire Willie Banks & The Messengers’  ‘Working For Jesus’ and the vintage rhythm and blues sound of 'Lord, Let Me Do Right' via the almost honky-tonk sound of ‘Saint…See More
May 9
Norman John Darwen posted a blog post

JIM ROBERTS AND THE RESONANTS – Beneath The Blood Moon (KKP Records)

Right from the opening notes of the title track, there is no doubt that this is going to be a fine Southern rock styled set, with plenty of blues influence, and Jim’s own droning cigar box guitar establishing a low-down dirty mood. Then Mike Finnigan’s Hammond organ comes in and everything moves up another notch. Though Jim is based in Los Angeles, he has been around since the 1970s and this outfit was previously known as The Jack Roberts Harvey Band.. He has a straightforward singing voice,…See More
May 5
A blog post by Norman John Darwen was featured

LIGHTHOUSE SWEDEN – Silence In The City (Moody Maraccas MOM007)

   This Swedish five-piece, under the leadership of the husband and wife team of Mats and Linda Brandemark (with the latter taking – just - the majority of the lead vocals), offer an excellent selection of blues - try ‘Everybody’s Been A Fool’ or for a more modern take, ‘Hole In My Soul ‘ – Dire Straits styled rock as on the…See More
Apr 24
Norman John Darwen posted blog posts
Apr 24
Norman John Darwen posted a blog post

JON ZEEMAN - Blue Room (Membrane Records)

South Florida based singer and guitarist Jon Zeeman has here eight fine original compositions and covers of Jimi Hendrix's 'Still Rainin' Still Dreamin', and Robert Johnson's (via The Rolling Stones, I strongly suspect) 'Love In Vain'. Blue Room is a pleasingly straight-forward blues set, with the occasional rock tinges always kept in check and never over-done (the only non-blues based track is the instrumental title track, running to just under a minute). The late Allman Brothers Band drummer…See More
Apr 20
A blog post by Norman John Darwen was featured

DELTA MOON – Cabbagetown (Jumping Jack 12017)

This is the eighth studio album from this four-piece band out of Atlanta, Georgia, with nine original compositions and a throbbing cover of Mississippi Delta bluesman Son House’s classic ‘Death Letter’, more than a little different from other versions you may have heard. The band is more of a roots-rock outfit than a straight blues band, with an upbeat approach and an ability to consistently hit a seemingly effortless groove married to a memorable melody and catchy lyrics. Although the gospel…See More
Apr 5
Norman John Darwen posted a blog post

DELTA MOON – Cabbagetown (Jumping Jack 12017)

This is the eighth studio album from this four-piece band out of Atlanta, Georgia, with nine original compositions and a throbbing cover of Mississippi Delta bluesman Son House’s classic ‘Death Letter’, more than a little different from other versions you may have heard. The band is more of a roots-rock outfit than a straight blues band, with an upbeat approach and an ability to consistently hit a seemingly effortless groove married to a memorable melody and catchy lyrics. Although the gospel…See More
Apr 4
A blog post by Norman John Darwen was featured

JIM GUSTIN & TRUTH JONES – Memphis (own release)

 This is the second album from gruff-voiced singer/ songwriter/ guitarist and bandleader Jim and his singing partner Jeri “Truth Jones” Goldenhar. Jim is from Santa Clarita, California – listen to the lyrics of the title track – and has been playing around the Los Angeles area for over 30 years. The two tend to alternate lead vocals, though the vintage soul styled closer is a true duet. Both Jim and Jeri are soulful singers, supporting each other well and tackling an excellent programme of…See More
Mar 31
Norman John Darwen posted a blog post

JIM GUSTIN & TRUTH JONES – Memphis (own release)

 This is the second album from gruff-voiced singer/ songwriter/ guitarist and bandleader Jim and his singing partner Jeri “Truth Jones” Goldenhar. Jim is from Santa Clarita, California – listen to the lyrics of the title track – and has been playing around the Los Angeles area for over 30 years. The two tend to alternate lead vocals, though the vintage soul styled closer is a true duet. Both Jim and Jeri are soulful singers, supporting each other well and tackling an excellent programme of…See More
Mar 30
A blog post by Norman John Darwen was featured

PROFESSOR LOUIE AND THE CROWMATIX - Crowin' The Blues (Woodstock WR 61)

"Well, this gives the lie to the statement that the best blues is laid down spontaneously, often in the last few minutes of a studio session as the producer's trying to get the musicians to pack up". That was my first thought listening to this CD "blind" - this is carefully crafted music, thoughtful blues with meticulous arrangements, such as Professor's Louie's excellent piano playing on his version of Tommy Tucker's classic 'High Heel Sneakers', Miss Marie's immaculately timed gospel shouts…See More
Mar 28
Norman John Darwen posted a blog post

PROFESSOR LOUIE AND THE CROWMATIX - Crowin' The Blues (Woodstock WR 61)

"Well, this gives the lie to the statement that the best blues is laid down spontaneously, often in the last few minutes of a studio session as the producer's trying to get the musicians to pack up". That was my first thought listening to this CD "blind" - this is carefully crafted music, thoughtful blues with meticulous arrangements, such as Professor's Louie's excellent piano playing on his version of Tommy Tucker's classic 'High Heel Sneakers', Miss Marie's immaculately timed gospel shouts…See More
Mar 22
A blog post by Norman John Darwen was featured

DAVID M'ORE - Passion, Soul & Fire (Own label)

Born in Argentina but based in California since 1990 - initially in Los Angeles where he played with some of the local blues musicians but nowadays he calls San Francisco home - David M'ore is an unabashed blues-rocker, with a gruff voice in the vein of Howlin' Wolf or Captain Beefheart (though a little less flexible, if truth be told - an occasional vocal duet might go down well), and a guitar style that draws in about equal amounts from Johnny Winter, Jimi Hendrix, Gary Moore and Deep…See More
Mar 22
Norman John Darwen posted a blog post

DAVID M'ORE - Passion, Soul & Fire (Own label)

Born in Argentina but based in California since 1990 - initially in Los Angeles where he played with some of the local blues musicians but nowadays he calls San Francisco home - David M'ore is an unabashed blues-rocker, with a gruff voice in the vein of Howlin' Wolf or Captain Beefheart (though a little less flexible, if truth be told - an occasional vocal duet might go down well), and a guitar style that draws in about equal amounts from Johnny Winter, Jimi Hendrix, Gary Moore and Deep…See More
Mar 18
Norman John Darwen posted a blog post

KATHY & THE KILOWATTS – Let’s Do This Thing (Lectro Fine 022017)

This is a very fine, almost straight blues set from singer Kathy Murray, aided and abetted by some wonderful guitar playing by her husband Bill “Monster” Jones, a top-notch rhythm section and the occasional use of horns. As for those superlatives – did I mention that these guys are veterans of the Austin, Texas, blues scene? The band’s strapline is “real deal Texas roots and blues”. Initially though, I was rather less keen. On first listening, I got to around track three thinking something was…See More
Mar 14

Profile Information

Name
Norman Darwen
Do you wish to be a FS correspondent/reviewer
yes
What is your involvement in music?
Freelance journalist/ reviewer for numerous magazines and websites - specialising in Blues, Caribbean music (esp. French Caribbean), music of La Reunion, African music - and anything else of interest!
How best do you see your involvement here developing?
Review CD's

Norman John Darwen's Blog

BOBBY MESSANO – Bad Movie (Prince Frog Record Company BM1-41517)

Bad Movie_CoverArt

 

Guitarist, singer and bandleader Bobby Messano has many years experience of working with rock artists like Steve Winwood and country artists like Jimmy Wayne and Rodney Atkins. Yet in his own right he is known as a contemporary blues artist, and certainly the first few tracks here point to him as an accomplished blues-rocker, with an influence from the British blues-boomers of the late 60s, and Jimi Hendrix (try ‘Why Water A Dead Rose’ for the latter). The vast…

Continue

Posted on May 24, 2017 at 12:41

DAVIS COEN – These Things Shall Pass (Soundview SP 1008)

These Things Shall Pass

 

Here’s a varied CD of inspirational sacred music, covering a wide range of styles from traditional country spirituals ‘What A Friend We Have In Jesus’ and ‘Old Rugged Cross’ and the pure country cover of the title track (previously covered by Johnny Cash and Hank Snow) to the Memphis soul-inflections of former Jackson Southernaire Willie Banks & The Messengers’  ‘Working For Jesus’ and the vintage rhythm and blues sound of 'Lord, Let Me Do Right' via…

Continue

Posted on May 9, 2017 at 13:01

JIM ROBERTS AND THE RESONANTS – Beneath The Blood Moon (KKP Records)

Right from the opening notes of the title track, there is no doubt that this is going to be a fine Southern rock styled set, with plenty of blues influence, and Jim’s own droning cigar box guitar establishing a low-down dirty mood. Then Mike Finnigan’s Hammond organ comes in and everything moves up another notch. Though Jim is based in Los Angeles, he has been around since the 1970s and this outfit was previously known as The Jack Roberts Harvey Band.. He has a…

Continue

Posted on May 5, 2017 at 15:34

LIGHTHOUSE SWEDEN – Silence In The City (Moody Maraccas MOM007)

 

 

 

This Swedish five-piece, under the leadership of the husband and wife team of Mats and Linda Brandemark (with the latter taking – just - the majority of the lead vocals), offer an excellent selection of blues - try ‘Everybody’s Been A Fool’ or for a more…

Continue

Posted on April 24, 2017 at 13:00

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At 1:12 on August 16, 2015, Vallecia Jones said…

Hello
How are you today?
I wish you the best of season
I will like us to discuss important issues.
Write me back once you read my mail.
vallecia_jones@aol.com
Hope to hear from you
Take care,
Vallecia

 
 
 

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Year 2016

1
Levi Parham
90 pts.
These American Blues
Music Road Records
GC,JBO,TK
2
Martha Fields
86 pts.
Southern White Lies
Independent
BP,BH,FB,JAB,RW,SP
3
Carter Sampson
75 pts.
Wilder Side
Independent/CRS
AN,CRS,JB
4
Anna Elizabeth Laube
65 pts.
Tree
Ahh...Pockets! Records
DH,NC
5
Michael McDermott
60 pts.
Willow Springs
Pauper Sky Records
BK,MM
6
Shovels & Rope
54 pts.
Little Seeds
New West
 
7
Robert Ellis
53 pts.
Robert Ellis
New West Records
DHO
8
Sturgill Simpson
52 pts.
A Sailor’s Guide to Earth
Atlantic Records
JJ,JF
9
Douglas Greer
50 pts.
Baja Louisiana
Zilker Park Records
HDB,ML
10
Lucinda Williams
46 pts.
The Ghosts Of Highway 20
Highway 20 Records
EM
11
Buddy Miller & Friends
44 pts.
Cayamo Sessions at Sea
New West Records
 
12
Wink Burcham
43 pts.
Cleveland Summer Nights
Continental Song City
 
13
Eric Brace & Peter Cooper
42 pts.
C&O Canal
Red Beet Records
BR
14
Brent Cobb
41 pts.
Shine On A Rainy Day
Elektra Records
HH
 
Daniel Romano
41 pts.
Mosey
New West
CVL
 
Leonard Cohen
41 pts.
You Want it Darker
Sony Music
HO
17
Christian Kjellvander
40 pts.
A Village: Natural Light
Tapete Records
BM
18
Drive-By Truckers
39 pts.
American Band
ATO Records
AR,EZ
19
Birds of Chicago
38 pts.
Real Midnight
Five Head Entertainment
LM,SZ
20
John Prine
37 pts.
For Better, or Worse
Oh Boy Records
FS,MB
21
The Cactus Blossoms
36 pts.
You’re Dreaming
Red House Records
GS,HD
22
Richmond Fontaine
35 pts.
You Can’t Go Back
Décor Records
FCE
23
Gillian Welch
34 pts.
Boots No.1: The Official Revival Bootleg
Acony Records
LK,PR,TJ
24
Sarah Jarosz
33 pts.
Undercurrent
Sugar Hill
RM
25
Joe Purdy
32 pts.
Who Will Be Next?
Mudtown Crier Records
AL
 
The Devil Makes Three
32 pts.
Redemption & Ruin
New West

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