More Sublime and Thought Provoking Songs From a Modern Blues Master.
Quite regularly I listen to albums by artistes that make me think “Why aren’t they more famous?” or others “How they Hell are they famous and filling Wembley?” Then, along comes the likes of Keb’ Mo and I think, “He certainly deserves all of the accolades, awards and riches his talent and hard work deserves.”
While always associated with Delta Blues, there’s always been so much more to his music than just that one tiny genre, and OKLAHOMA is no different; with every song here being accessible to everyone; even music fans who don’t think they ‘like the Blues.’
OOOhhheeee! Opening track I Remember You is a slow hypnotic Blues with some delightful slide hiding in the shadows, that typifies Keb’ Mo’s distinctive ‘style’ and not just sets the tone here. Only because one other track is actually stunningly brilliant, stops it being my Favourite Song.
It was only by reading his Wikipedia page as research that I found out Morris started his musical career in a Calypso band; and that fact makes the beat in This Is My Home make ‘sense’ as this topically ‘political’ song about immigration in one form or another; needs a sweet melody to ‘get the message across’ and it certainly does.
It’s no surprise that this is a collection of songs that bounce off each other until they are a cohesive unit that demands your attention; with the uptempo and thought provoking I Should’ve, Ridin’ on a Train and the lusciously cinematic title track Oklahoma adding ‘light’ to the ‘shade’ of Cold Outside and The Way I, a fascinating song about depression that takes Keb’ Mo’ into a bit of a traditional Folk arena.
Tucked away in the middle is a glorious Ragtime tune, featuring Taj Mahal that is so very poignant in 2019; Don’t Throw It Away; about the amount of plastic waste we use one and dispose of; cluttering the earth, sea and more. Clever, witty and poignant …… expect it to be on a TV Advert some time soon.
I don’t usually ‘criticise’ in my reviews; but I have to say that the single, a duet with Roseanne Cash; Put A Woman in Charge is an over simplistic theory, pandering to the Feminist Movement which is in the ascendancy these days. With all that’s going on in America at the moment, I understand the need for radical change; but having suffered under the leadership of Margaret Thatcher and more recently Theresa May I can’t vouch for this theory as necessarily being the right way forward; simply because of gender. Personally, I’m just for the best person for the job; regardless of race, creed or gender.
Back to the good stuff ………..
The Official RMHQ Favourite Track is the finale, Beautiful Music which feature the divine voice of the artiste’s wife, Robbie Brookes Moore on a love song so personal, passionate and damn near perfect it couldn’t be anything other than my Favourite Song here.
While always steeping his albums in Blues Mythology; Keb’ Mo’ has created yet another Cross-Over album that Rock, Soul and even Jazz fans can delight in owning and playing too; while Blues Fans will hail this as one of, if not ‘the’ Album of the Year.
Released June 14th 2019