These are some of the blues women I loved in 2014. It is a very subjective collection. For this article I am not including women I’ve listened to a lot before 2014 like Bonnie Raitt or even Ruthie Foster or Janiva Magness. They are amazing women but these are the women who I really discovered in 2014. They may have been around longer, but for me they were a revelation for the year and that is how I made my choices for 2014.
“I’ve been around a long time,” EG Kight told me at Darwin’s November 15. She and her band were so warm and relaxed and at the same time exciting that night. I had reviewed her CD, “A New Day,” which marked her comeback from a serious illness and trying recovery, and there I said, “Kight, who is sometimes known as “The Georgia Songbird,” certainly comes back strong with this project and starts off her “New Day” with a very bright dawn. ” She’s a great blues woman and if you haven’t discovered her or need to rediscover her, please do that without delay.
I had reviewed Lisa Mills back in 2011 when she did “Tempered In Fire,” but had forgotten that until I reviewed her new CD “I’m Changing.” where I opined, . Luckily, she may be changing but her music is as satisfying and enjoyable as ever…This is a grown woman who knows her own strengths and weaknesses and how to handle herself.” Get the CD and hear the truth of that for yourself.
On Amazon, I reviewed Lisa Biales’ “Belle of the Blues,” which was producted by EG Kight , like this: “Lisa Biales is a real blues queen and deserves the title of Belle of the Blues. She is one of the most dynamic and powerful blues singers on the contemporary scene…you just could not find a better blues CD than this.” Nothing has happened since March of this year to change my mind about that. She is and will remain a favorite of mine.
I first became familiar with Diane Durrett when she worked with my friend Bobby Messano on his great CD, “Welcome to Deltaville.” Since then, I have had the opportunity to see her four times this year at various clubs and events and have discovered that she is a funny, skillful, and very talented woman. For her as-yet-unreleased CD, “Soul Suga,” I got an advance copy from Durrett herself, I wrote, “This is a marvelous CD. You will laugh, you will cry, you will dance, and you will be inspired, all within 11 songs. ” You will also probably feel all those emotions if you catch her live.
Markey is my latest discovery and I look forward to seeing and hearing her a lot more in the future. In September, I reviewed Markey Blue’s first CD, “Hey Hey,” and then earlier this month I was able to hear the band’s “Christmas” EP with four original songs. I was also able to see the band and meet Markey right before Christmas and I have to say that she is one of the most talented, personable and charming women I have met this year. Her band, which includes her songwriting partner Ric Lantena, is great too. This singer is going to go just as far as she wants to, I think.
Those are the women I chose as best for 2015. I hope you will give them a chance and if they aren’t already favorites of yours, they will be soon.