A courteous cross-section of talent from the land of the sultry song.
There’s nothing a Southern belle couldn’t conquer – everybody knows it since “Gone With The Wind” – and, having produced some of those, Joey Stuckey stumbled upon an idea of gathering the regional crops which resulted in this concise anthology. A blues maven, as his own albums suggest, the guitarist needed a voice to deliver a feminist demand for respect on the punchy “What You See Ain’t What You Get” that he co-wrote with THE POPES, and Sue Lu proved to be a suitable belter, and that’s how it all started, yet the genre gamut of the dozen cuts on display is much wider.
It’s not about civil rights or defiance, though, what with Vanessa Moses’ infectious salsa of “Danish Cookies Is My Name” or the hard rocking “Lonely Boulevard” from Katherine Daniel which embrace purely romantic notions. More so, there’s acceptance of domestic turmoil in the folky “Letting Go” by THE VINEYARD BAND and Kim Meeks’ “Everybody’s Pretty” that turns pop idiom upside down, while “Home” by Louise Warren wraps it in orchestral spirituality, and Stacy Hostler’s voice and piano elevate “Something More” to a chamber vibrancy. But TATB and Rachel Elkins’ “Johnny 9” finds the joy of life in blues, its “Blind Man” refrain a reference to Stuckey’s ability to sense a talent without seeing. That’s the Southern way.