The great thing about blues music is that it is timeless. It’s a given that all rock music is based on the blues and that even though current music is trend-oriented, there is always room for a great blues record. A Blues For The New World is just such a record! Yes you know David Clayton-Thomas as the frontman for Blood Sweat & Tears, the band that triggered a blues renaissance in 1969 with a self-titled album that sold over 10 million copies and opened the doors for the likes of Chicago and Lighthouse. Fast forward some 35 years and DCT is still making great records.
This 13-song collection runs the full gamut of Memphis-R&B (What If I Told You), New Orleans jazz (Calico Girl), Gospel (Holy Moses), Big City Blues (It’s All So LA), Reggae (Politics) and even some Rock ‘n Roll/Hip Hop (The Sky’s The Limit) capped off by a moving tribute to the 9/11 tragedy with (The Lights On Broadway). Supported by stand-out musical contributions by the likes of harp player Roly Platt, jazz guitarist Bernie LaBarge pianist Rob Gusevs, an excellent horn section plus some dazzling vocal support by acapella group Cadence and two stand-out contributions from the 40-voice Faith Chorale, Clayton-Thomas melds all these ingredients together with his own distinctive vocal style plus song lyrics that are current and relevant. He sings about personal intrusions on the internet (It Ain’t Free), shady politicians (‘Politics’) the misery of unemployment (‘Frank And Margie’) along with personal lyrics like his near death on `Second Chance’ and a poignant message to his daughter on ‘Common Ground’.
Overall a brilliant production which modernizes traditional sounds while reflecting on the past glories of great horn bands like BS&T and Chicago.