Playing guitar for Chicago blues heavyweights like Jimmy Rogers (not to be confused with old-time country singer Jimmie Rodgers) and Jimmy Dawkins looks good on a resume, but it wouldn't mean as much if Nick Moss hadn't learned a lot from those experiences. Obviously, Rogers and Dawkins taught him well -- very well, in fact. Although Count Your Blessings was recorded in late 2002 and early 2003, this CD has no problem capturing the spirit of electric Chicago blues in the '50s and '60s. Moss' performances aren't slick; the singer/guitarist's tough, rugged, gritty approach recalls the glory days of Chess Records, and sometimes brings to mind Magic Sam (who recorded for Delmark, not Chess, but was heavily influenced by the Chess sound). Technically, Moss isn't a great singer; he doesn't have the biggest vocal range in the world. Nonetheless, the Chicagoan gets his points across and demonstrates that a vocalist doesn't need a mind-blowing range to be expressive. And while Moss' singing is merely competent, his guitar playing is excellent; when Moss takes an electric guitar solo, no one will accuse him of lacking chops. Nor will Moss be accused of lacking skills as a songwriter -- all of the songs that he wrote for Count Your Blessings are memorable. In terms of the tracks' sequence, Moss does something interesting: he sticks to original material during the first half of the CD and focuses on other artists' songs after that. It's as though Moss wants to make sure listeners know what he can do as a composer before he moves on to material by famous bluesmen, the likes of whom range from Big Bill Broonzy ("Hey Hey") and Leroy Carr ("Barrelhouse Woman") to James Cotton ("Lightnin'"). All things considered, Count Your Blessings is a CD that Moss should be proud to have in his catalog.
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AllMusic Review by Alex Henderson