GUY DAVIS: The Adventures of Fishy Waters

Guy Davis: The Adventures of Fishy Waters

The Adventures Of Fishy Waters: In Bed With The Blues

This “audio play” project marks the disc debut of a one-man production that singer-songwriter Guy Davis has performed on and off since 1994. Accompanying himself on various six and twelve string Gibson guitars and Hohner “Special 20” harmonicas, Davis animatedly relates the episodic, thought-provoking saga of an itinerant country blues musician in story, entertaining tall tales and song, employing a few numbers by blues icons like Robert Johnson (a harrowing, slide guitar- transfused “Walking Blues”), Big Bill Broonzy (“Good Liquor Gonna Carry Me Down”) and Blind Willie McTell (an infectiously syncopated “Georgia Rag”) seamlessly interpolated among 28 consistently vibrant Davis compositions, the most gratifying of which are spoken word—like the Poe-ish tale of “The Farmer & His Eight Sons” and the youthful Fishy’s stark recollection of “The Lynching.” Other favorites include the outlandish, two-part tale of Fishy’s alcoholic mentor Juno (“Nobody Knows The Trouble On My Mind”), a sound-effects enhanced narrative concerning a pair of ne’er-do-wells (“The One-Legged Grave Robber”), the eye-opening, shaggy-dog story of Fishy’s first-ever big gulp of “white lightning” at a hobo jungle encampment (“Meeting Crazy Cat/Going To Nashville”) and a ragtimey recall of “Miss Ripley’s Catfish Stew.” This imaginative two-disc set sits on my shelf next to copies of August Wilson’s latter-day, blues-oriented plays (The Pittsburgh Cycle) and Jon Hendrick’s classic Evolution Of The Blues Song project.

Gary von Tersch

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