It has been a while since I have featured some of the albums that those nice people at ReviewShine send me. Let's put that right with a couple of CDs from some top-notch women.
First up is an old friend. We have featured Kelsey Waldon here a couple of times before, and I had sort of assumed she was a grizzled veteran with many albums under her belt. In fact she is a distinctly ungrizzled 26 years old, and "The Goldmine" - which comes out officially next month - is her first full album. She has been living in Nashville for four years and, perhaps as a result, the sound on parts of the album is a bit more mainstream than on earlier EPs like "Fixin' It Up". But in moderation that is no bad thing, and there is still plenty of "proper country" there (with Kelsey's voice you could not eliminate it if you tried). One example is my particular favourite, "Quicksand".
The other album is from an artist who is new to me. Had I heard her before, you would have done too as I would have been straight on here to spread the word. She has a great blues voice with a bit of a country twang, which for some reason makes me think of Bonnie Bramlett - not so much the sound, more the general feel. Her name is Eden Brent, and her latest album "Jigsaw Heart" came out last week on Yellow Dog Records. Have a listen to "Panther Burn" and then, when you've snapped out of your reverie, go and buy the album.
"Quicksand" - Kelsey Waldon
[Update: I have been asked to take down the Kelsey Waldon track but don't hold that against them - buy the record and you'll get to hear it]
"Panther Burn" - Eden Brent
Speaking of quality female blues singers, here is a bit of Elkie Brooks. When I first featured Kelsey Waldon it was her version of "Only Love Can Break Your Heart", and I made some disobliging remarks about Elkie's disco version which caused great excitement among some of her fans. As I said at my subsequent trial, my problem is with the song not with Elkie. In recent years she has come back to the blues and shown us all what she can really do.