Paul Reddick- Sugar Bird   Leave a comment


Paul Reddick

Sugar Bird

Northern Blues

 

I’ve never really ‘got’ what others saw and heard in Toronto’s Paul Reddick. Not his fault, not mine either. Sometimes, things just don’t click. But now, I believe I’m coming around.

 

On Sugar Bird, and with the assistance of producer and album mainstay Colin Linden, the blues troupe leader strips things back a bit and finds a sound that is refreshing and fully developed. This is closer, to my ears, to the music one expects from Michael Jerome Brown- a bit of traditional folk and country are mixed in with Reddick’s blues- only more elaborately presented.

 

Reddick is not young by any stretch, but his vocal presence has now matured to the point where I think he could carry an album with minimal accompaniment. The always interesting Linden does the heavy lifting throughout the album, playing his usual complement of guitars- and in at least one spot- some banjo.

 

Utilizing four distinct musician configurations, the album contains as many apparent atmospheres; there is a bit of big band, an intimate trio, and some spooky country blues. It is wonderful to hear Garth Hudson on a few tracks, and John Whynot’s piano on John Lennon in New Orleans is beautiful.

 

With something for everyone, Sugar Bird is that rare album that successfully cuts across multiple genres.

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