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CD REVIEW 

Submitted by Iain Patience

Auld Man's Baccie is an English acoustic blues duo with an evident love of and understanding for traditional acoustic blues music, with a ragtime background and grounding that bubbles through on most of the dozen tracks here.

Nick Phillips and Davey Curtis have only been playing together for just over a year or so but already they have an apparent, near-seamless empathy that makes their similar styles and approaches meld perfectly. 'Resonating With The Blues' is their debut release and has good support backing from a few of their blues buddies to lift the album out of the ordinary.

Tracks include colourful, skilled covers of Muddy Waters' classics like 'Can't Be Satisfied' and 'Champagne & Reefer', together with classic Jimmie Rodgers, Taj Mahal and Tampa Red.  As the title suggests, there's some very fine, slippery slide steel/resonator guitar work in the pot here and some equally fine and subtle harp-work from a buddy, Jim Bullock, and soulful backing vocals from Rhiannon Phillips.

This is one of those albums that manage to stand out from the crowd by dint of the passion, purpose and talent clearly on display. 

A positively enjoyable bit of work, ideal for lovers of that ole-style ragtime-blues music with a modern edge and timeless feel.

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Review from The Independent

Resonating with the Blues.

Davey Curtis Humbucker and Nick Phillips have met up in the last year or so and formed the acoustic duo, Auld Man's Baccie.

Nick handles the slide guitar parts and Davey the other guitars, mandolin and vocals.

They are ably assisted on this professionally produced release by Rhiannon Phillips who provides some lovely background vocals and complementary harp from Jim Bullock appears on a number of tracks.

There are 12 tracks on the release, the first 7 being originals and the remaining covers. The opener, ‘Mama Moonshine’ has some brushwork from Dave Curle, who also was behind the controls, in the background which adds to the feel. Rhiannon’s vocals and Nick slide add to the song rather than taking over. The second track ‘Alcohol blues’ has additional harp and vocals and a few background sounds to make it an interesting listen.

‘Grant me salvation’ appears to be using a baritone resonator to provide some bass string slides. The forth track, Long hard road, has a touch of ‘Brother where art though’ about it and works very well.

‘51st time’ follows on and again includes the talents of Rhiannon and Jim. ‘Baccie Blues’ shows more drive and grittier vocals to a ‘Big Bossman’ rhythm. A good bit of fun. ‘Gather up your oats’ is a double entendre song that could easily come out the mouth of Eddie Martin. The covers all work and add to the variety.

During the original tracks, at times, I was thinking Clapton in acoustic mode. There is good variety of foot tapping numbers and if they were in my area, I would go and see them live and I suspect they would be very entertaining. I suggest you go and check their website and have a listen to some of the tracks yourself.

Lonesome Jon


Article from Gonzo Weekly Magazine #201
(http://www.gonzoweekly.com/)




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Gonzo Weekly Article
Tuesday Night Blues Club, Surrey - February 2017

"We spent all day thinking how to sum up last night in words and there's just one word that truly does sum it up.... ENTERTAINMENT. Yes, very definitely and deliberately in capitals. 

Auld Mans Baccie and Gary Grainger never lose sight of the fact that their audience have come out to have an enjoyable evening. They could quite easily have sat back and impressed us with their music. 

Combining their own compositions with their own takes on songs from artists as diverse as Johnny Guitar Watson, Muddy Waters, Alex Harvey and AC/DC (yes AC/DC!) and many more they would have won us over with just the music. But when you combined that with their humour and repartee you end up with a mixture that had beaming smiles on every face in the room. 

From the moment that they took to our stage until the licensing hours called a halt (we think they would have played all night otherwise!) they had every member of the audience wanting more and they transformed the Club into one of those fabled juke joints. Those in the North East are incredibly lucky to have this much talent on their door step - and for just one night we too were the lucky ones. A night we'll savour for a long time to come...

Our thanks to Davey (the Reverend Curtis Humbucker) Curtis, Nick (the Baptist) Phillips and Gary Grainger for making the journey and bringing us such a great night. 

Our thanks also to Simon Taylor for the sparkling sound, Haydn Hart, Phil Honley and Ken Jackson for the pictures that accompany this and everyone who came out on a February night and filled the room." 
Auld Mans Baccie are an acoustic duo playing roots, Americana, and traditional blues music. 

Consisting of Davey (the Reveren...d Curtis Humbucker) Curtis Vocals and Guitar and Nick (the Baptist) Phillips on slide. Playing an eclectic mix of Delta, Chicago, and Gospel foot tapping beer drinking music along with a growing number of self penned songs. 

The blues is a very peculiar genre of music. In the (nearly) half century since Jimi Hendrix choked on his own vomit, electric blues bands featuring lots of grimacing and fret wanking from guitarists technically far more accomplished than I, have become a staple of pubs across the country, and with very few exceptions are somewhere in the existential no man’s land between ‘dreary’ and ‘annoying’, whereas the original music, especially the original source material laid down in the twenties, thirties and forties by poor black men in the southern half of the United States of Amerikkka, for whom slavery was still a recent racial memory, is often still undeniably thrilling! 

The folklore which has grown up around Robert Johnson, claiming that he sold his soul to a cornute stranger in return for the ability to play the guitar like nobody else had ever done before, has grabbed its way into the collective cultural subconscious of Western culture, and has spawned a million spoofs. Even I have written a couple. But I am not going to do it now. Why? The blues, like reggae, is music which was born from an oppressed culture; a culture which, for centuries, had been browbeaten, and kept under the thumb of a ruling elite from elsewhere. So when you look at it in those terms, the claims made by Jimmy Rabbitte (and quoted above) in the seminal Irish movie, and before that in the movie by Roddy Doyle, start to make a hell of a lot of sense. But what has this to do with Auld Man’s Baccie? Well the conceptual links are obvious; much of Ireland has been oppressed by absentee capitalism for much of its history, but much the same can be said about the North East of England. So this gives the two musicians the existential right to play the music of poor black men a century or so after pioneers like Son House and Robert Johnson, but are they any good? Hell yeah. I have known Davey Curtis for about twenty years, and the two of us have cut a boozy swathe through UFO conventions and giant catfish investigations for twenty odd (sometimes very odd) years, but I am not praising his new band just because he is a mate of mine. Mates of mine have made some spectacularly bad music over the years. Nope. Davey and Nick have actually pulled off something extraordinary here. I have been a fan of Davey’s songwriting skills for a long time. Like me, he is someone who has always brought a wry (and sometimes macabre) sense of humour to bear on his lyrics. But something has always been missing. Whilst his lyrics were always slick and elegantly funny, and his tunes well crafted and clever, something always seemed to be missing. And now I know what it was. The two Northeastern Nutters may not have paid a midnight visit to a lonely crossroads to meet the Devil. 

In fact it could be claimed that The Devil had already paid a visit to Seaham and its environs in the form of thuggish strikebreakers and the Special Patrol Group. But in that case The Devil wore a blue twinset and had annoyingly coiffured hair. But whoever gave them the spiritual permission to play it, these two eccentric bluesmen have latched a hold of their spiritual and cultural legacy, and are tearing it up massively in front of all comers. And their second album The Church of Lost Souls is even better than their first one, and that is saying something. Davey’s songwriting skills have finally found their spiritual home, and peculiarly, whilst they are funnier than ever, somehow there is a deep kernel of grittiness that I had never noticed before. 

Most peculiar Mama. JD



 
 
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