The Upshot: The guitarist’s love for, and devotion to, blues tradition remain both clear and consistent.
BY LEE ZIMMERMAN
Bob Margolin lives and breathes the blues. And well he should. Having gotten his apprenticeship as part of the Muddy Waters Band in the late ‘70s during their various world tours, he was able to develop his chops under the watchful eye of the Master himself. Which meant that when Margolin was ready to take his leave in 1980, he had accumulated the credibility and confidence to strike out on his own. His efforts were rewarded with any number of prestigious prizes, including the W.C. Handy Award.
All of which makes My Road such a telling personal document about his journey thus far. While the music stays true to the template, the songs resonate with lyrics that express his admiration for the blues and its purveyors both past and present. “Young and Old Blues” is the most telling of those tracks, a recap of the time he was invited to play with the late, great B.B. King. It was an experience that had him marvelling at the older man’s agility, while also reinforcing the fact that age is only a matter of perspective because skill supersedes all. Likewise, his homage to the music’s continuing legacy (“Robert Johnson and the devil still walk side by side”) on the track “Devil’s Daughter” not only namedrops any number of legends, but brings things full circle as well. Produced by Grammy-winning producer Michael Freeman the album provides an equal mix of originals and choice covers, but its love for, and devotion to, blues tradition remain both clear and consistent.
DOWNLOAD: “Devil’s Daughter,” “Young and Old Blues