Sam Myers

Coming from the Old School

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It's taken Sam Myers fully 50 years to make his first solo album. But he's no stranger to either stage or studio, having worked with Elmore James and Anson Funderburgh. For his debut he's assembled a top-notch band, led by guitarist Mel Brown, to work not so much behind him as with him. Brown is a standout as an accompanist, offering wonderful decoration to "I Got the Blues" and "Burning Fire." But understandably, it's Myers who's the star of the show, and his driving harmonica playing carries its own momentum, as on his version of Rice Miller's "Ninety Nine." But there's also a very pleasing grit to his singing, whether on the slow and deeply soulful"After Hours When the Joint Is Closed," or "Waitin' On Your Mama," which could have come directly from the Chicago school of blues. It might have taken him five decades to get to this, but from the music on the disc, not a single minute was wasted.

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