Diane Durrett and Soul Suga Put a Lid On It

Diane Durrett and Soul Suga Put a Lid On It

Diane Durrett and Soul Suga Put a Lid On It a great listen, particularly for those who enjoy the more soulful side of the blues. Full of tender moments in the first half and partying and humour in the second, backed by a very skilful band.

I’m not blowing my own trumpet, honest, but my article, The Ladies Sing and Play the Blues, in Liz’s fine sparkling new DoodleZine, means that Diane Durrett and I have a lot in common…she has just hosted the Women in Blues Show over in Stone Mountain Village near Atlanta, Georgia, while my article attempted to promote just that: women have always and will always be an integral and essential part of the blues. From the early days of artists such as Mamie Smith and Sister Rosetta Tharpe, through to the present day with Chantelle McGregor, Joanne Shaw Taylor et al, they all make a difference and, on many occasions, outdo their male contemporaries. Of course, Diane is far more qualified than I am, having sung and played guitar on numerous records from her debut 50,000 Volts in 1993 through to 2018’s live album, whereas I’m a failed bassist that never reached a studio!

Diane has made an impact on stage and in the studio…she has sung with Sting, Gregg Allman, The Indigo Girls, and Chuck Leavell and has opened shows for Tina Turner, KoKo Taylor, Tinsley Ellis, Delbert McClinton, and Derek Trucks, as well as providing vocals for other artists. She does lean toward soul as her voice has that raw yet sultry tone, but the blues aren’t hidden, they bubble beneath the surface and lend a hand in making Diane’s music, accessible and original.

Diane Durrett & Soul Suga

Put A Lid On It

On her latest release, Put A Lid On It, backed by the formidable musicianship of Soul Suga (not sure what happened to the ‘r’ because I know the South Korean rapper and the Japanese politician of that name are not involved!) she has delivered eight soulful, bluesy and powerful tracks with hints of gospel and r ’n’ b running through.

Opening with a subtle, inward looking and inward seeking ballad called In My Soul; lightness of backing to Diane’s piano and vocal helps the atmosphere and it is an emotional and, yes soulful, declaration of love that can be played to current or prospective partners to let Diane say what you’re thinking…but better. We Got It continues the sharing of love as she promises “you never have to worry in my arms”, all set against a soul drenched background with some neat chord work on the guitar and the band in full swing it works well. Sweeter Love Grows begins with churchy organ before the band and Diane join in on a slow more bluesy, gospel-y number with a gorgeous vocal affirming that love at first sight is real…it sounds autobiographical too. Blue Water changes to a shuffle that is heralded by a nice bass intro and organ and drums join in for a bounce that is irresistible and has a neat guitar phrasing that, at times, evokes pedal steel and is lifted further by some equally tasty organ runs. Wish It Would Rain is gospel with piano and Hammond overlays as Diane breathes life into the lyrics. A switch in emphasis is next as Put A Lid On It is still about love but with a deal more humour centred around alternative names for the mouth…backed by a jazzy blues piano and horn swing with some nice guitar phrasing and a great solo too from Tinsley Ellis. Good News keeps the humour running with a, shall we say, Blue Lu Barker or Lil Johnson touch. A great bass line pins it all down as the sax joins in with a similarly humour laden solo before the Hammond laces it with a swirl. Final track is more of a party-time song with funk overtones and a hint of Aretha…Make America Groove is horn driven and, whilst the lyrics may not work so well here and the Star-Spangled Banner makes a brief appearance, the song has a bite and, yes, a groove.

Although the songs veer a bit too much soul-wise for my normal listening, each track has an attractive base that, with Diane’s wonderful voice weaving through them, make for a very entertaining listen…so, if the soul side of blues is your bag, then I suggest you get hold of this one.

Bluesdoodles rating: 3 Doodle Paws – a great listen, particularly for those who enjoy the more soulful side of the blues. Full of tender moments in the first half and partying and humour in the second, backed by a very skilful band.

Musicians:
Diane Durrett: vocals, guitar, piano
Melissa Junebug: drums
Yoel B’nai Yehuda: keyboards
Mike Burton: saxophone
Fuji Fujimoto and Gregg Shapiro: bass
Tomi Martin, Cody Matlock, Ian Schumacher, Daniel Groover: guitar
Melvin Jones: trumpet
Adam McKnight, Peggy Still Johnson: backing vocals
Special guest Tinsley Ellis: guitar

Connect with Diane Durrett across SOCIAL MEDIA
Official Website
Facebook
YouTube

(iTunes moved on to some fine bluesy, southern rock with Dickey Betts solo update of the classic Ramblin’ Man…like I said, classic!)


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