Paul Cowley Album – Rural

paul cowley

Paul Cowley Album – Rural



Rural is an album crammed with good songs, endearing vocals and acoustic guitar that sings. This is country blues with a collection of classics and a handful of self-penned numbers showing that Paul understands the beating musical legacy of the blues. Rural is not an album lurking in the backwaters, it is a celebration of blues songs that have no need for effects and add-ons it is a perfect demonstration of stripped-back music in its simplest form.

Stripped-back does not need to be dull and leaden as the foot tapping Jitterbug Swing shows with the harmony of guitar, stomp board and lyrics that reflect good times as captured in Bukkha White’s iconic number.
All the classics were delivered with feeling and panache especially Candyman and the last track Muddy Waters’ I Can’t Be Satisfied; anyone who loves music that is a simple combination of harmonies between guitar and vocals this is an album that will please the listener every time you will be satisfied!.

The hidden gems are Paul’s own compositions, the four numbers are not replications of pieces from a music museum. Every one of his own numbers has a modern feel to the lyrics shaped and honed to fit into the musical format of the album. These are tracks that reflect the earlier music and works giving the album clarity of musical form and a foot in the past and the present.

There is for me something missing a layer of sound to augment and give punctuation to the lyrics could be a different tone from guitar, blues harp or percussive tones. The album leans for me heavily on the tried and tested Blues format of the front porch and hasn’t captured the feel of modernity that makes the album stand out from the crowd with an unexpected twist in the blues being delivered.

That said, there is no doubt the Paul Cowley Album – Rural, delivers what the artwork promises this is country blues, full of acoustic delights found in the rural heart and soul of stripped back roots music.

Bluesdoodles gives this CD SEVEN pawprint half inchdoodle paws out of TEN ….

Track Listing

1. Write Me A Few Of Your Line (Mississippi Fred McDowell)
2. Monday Morning Blues (Mississippi John Hurt)
3. Jitterbug Swing (Bukka White)
4. Not What They Seem (Paul Cowley)
5. Pay Day (Mississippi John Hurt)
6. Death Letter (Son House)
7. Candyman (Rev Gary Davis)
8. I Like A Girl (Paul Cowley)
9. Franklin Nashville (Paul Cowley)
10. You Gotta Move (Mississippi Fred McDowell)
11. At The End Of The Day (Paul Cowley)
12. I Can’t Be Satisfied (Muddy Waters)

Have listen –

Martin Harley ~ On Tour in UK 2015

Martin Harley and Daniel Kimbro - 'Live at Southern Ground' - cover (300dpi)MARTIN HARLEY AND DANIEL KIMBRO

With the wonderful album LIVE AT SOUTHERN GROUND Out now on CD, Vinyl & DL Read what Bluesdoodles said HERE this is just a snippet – “The whole album is as perfect as a sun ripened peach full of juicy musical snippets and lyrics that keep the music rooted in the blues”

Martin Harley is a supremely talented acoustic roots and blues guitarist, singer and songwriter with a burgeoning global reputation.

Live at Southern Ground, his eagerly anticipated new album, was recorded in Nashville in collaboration with Daniel Kimbro (Jerry Douglas, Larkin Poe) on upright bass.

As Martin explains “I wanted to make something representative of where I’m at musically at the moment with an album that reflects on the last year solo and duo touring. Daniel and I met in Knoxville through a mutual friend… he handed me his card which read… ‘alright guitar player… good upright bass player’ … an understatement on both parts!”

A mixture of retrospective solo and duo arrangements recorded during an afternoon at the esteemed Southern Ground studio in Nashville, Live at Southern Ground features Martin on Weissenborn… a traditional Hawaiian acoustic guitar played across the lap, resonators and archtops, and of course Daniel Kimbro on upright bass.

“It’s a simple, honest and direct album with no overdubs in a warm sounding room with some great microphones and two new friends playing a few songs over a cold beer or two” says Martin. “There’s a great feeling when you click with someone. It frees you up to experiment with the arrangement and the dynamic of a song.”

Live at Southern Ground follows on from Martin’s five previously acclaimed albums, most recently Mojo Fix in 2012. Along with many years of international touring and countless festivals Martin has built a strong international fan-base across the globe.

Renowned for his prowess as a slide guitarist, Martin is almost unique in the UK in his playing lap slide. During year-round worldwide touring he’s absorbed a plethora of diverse influences, honing his craft into the classic songwriting style he possesses today.
Martin Harley · Solo UK Tour November-December 2015

Martin will be touring solo across the UK during November and December and a duo tour with Daniel is scheduled for March 2016.

Martin Harley Solo UK Tour – Winter 2015


Thursday 12th Blue Sky Café, Bangor N. Wales
Friday 13th The Atkinson, Southport
Saturday 14th The Independent, Sunderland
Sunday 15th The Met, Bury
Tuesday 17th Komedia, Brighton
Wednesday 18th The Convent, Stroud
Thursday 19th Ropsley Village Hall, Ropsley, Lincs
Friday 20th Rolleston Village Hall, Rolleston, Notts
Saturday 21st Treswell Village Hall, Treswell, Notts
Sunday 22nd Victoria Hall, Settle, N. Yorks
Monday 23rd Henry Tudor House, Shrewsbury
Tuesday 24th Junction 2, Cambridge
Thursday 26th Octagon Chapel, Norwich
Friday 27th Fairkytes Arts Centre, Hornchurch
Saturday 28th West End Centre, Aldershot
Sunday 29th Chapel Arts Centre, Bath


Thursday 3rd The Railway, Winchester
Friday 4th The David Hall, Barnstable
Saturday 5th Barnstable Guildhall, Barnstable
Sunday 6th The Old Grammar School, Truro
Thursday 10th River Cottage, Axminster

Show Of Hands – St David's Hall Cardiff

Show Of Hands - St Davids Hall - Nov 2014_0032lShow Of Hands With Miranda Sykes
St David’s Hall
20th November 2014

Show of Hands the Devon-based English folk band comprising Steve Knightley the songwriting tour-de-force and Phil Beer were joined by Miranda Sykes with her double bass and searing harmonies who has added this depth of tone to the duo since 2004. This was an evening filled with musical tones delivered with a clarity and precision that reflected the emotions being portrayed by the lyrics of every song.

Show Of Hands - St Davids Hall - Nov 2014_0052lWe had fiddles, guitars and mandolins but above all we had vocals and harmonies thanks to Phil, Steve and Miranda. The classic English Folk number The Blind Fiddler provided an opportunity for Phil to display his talents on the fiddle and then the chance for audience participation and natural harmonies from the audience as they joined in the chorus Hallows Eve Is Here Again. Each song was described by frontman Steve Knightly giving a context and a reason that gave the set list substance, we had The Preacher about Portland in Dorset and some excellent Mandolin playing that built the atmosphere. Despite being steeped in British folk traditions we had a bluesy number Let Me Go To; Budleigh Salterton which was their take on Rock N Roll. The end of the first set was a dramatic medley of songs from their new album Century with a celebration of WW1 poets which was truly Poetry with Music.

Show Of Hands - St Davids Hall - Nov 2014_0011l

The second set was an opportunity for all three musicians to display their solo talents and added different texture to the sound and worked so well and then they came back together an delivered Santiago, followed by a protest song of arrogance, ignorance and greed AIG which had real passion an anger. Closing a marvellous evening of live music was Cousin Jack – an emotional outpouring of the Cornish Diaspora as the miners left Cornwall to mines across the world knowing they would never come home again.
Tonight was wall to wall Show of Hands folk with two sets and no support the audience were delighted to immerse themselves in a quality and emotionally driven delivery of English folk and lots more this is truly acoustic roots music immersed in history and traditions delivered with a freshness that is The Show of Hands.

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