Troy Turner

Teenage Blues in Baton Rouge

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When other Black teenagers were taking up rap in the 1980s, Troy Turner embraced a style that most of his peers had no interest in: the blues. At 23, Turner sang and played the blues like me meant it on the promising Teenage Blues In Baton Rouge. Influenced by artists ranging from Kenny Neal and Buddy Guy to Stevie Ray Vaughan and Jimi Hendrix, the Louisiana singer/electric guitarist is surprisingly mature on "House Without a Home," "She's Burnin'," "Life Is a Gamble" and other and inviting tunes. The charismatic Turner has a smooth vocal style, but that doesn't mean his music isn't gritty. This impressive CD explodes the myth that one has to be over 30 to be a convincing bluesman -- a myth ignoring the fact that so many of the all-time blues greats took up the blues in their teens. Turner (who successfully detours into Louisiana R&B territory on "Hold Me Close") proves that for younger bluesman, it's simply a question of being exposed to the blues and really feeling them.

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