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Pushin' Against A Stone
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Top Customer Reviews
Let's start with Valerie's voice. Astonishingly unique and instantly identifiable. Part Nina Simone, Billie Holiday and Dolly Parton yet all Valerie. On the more upbeat songs, it tends to go rather flatly stylized very reminiscent of early 1940s folk bands like the Carter Family or Hank Williams. On the softer songs, her tone is simply flawless showing much more range and a real talent for finding the groove to a song. Genuine and heartfelt, it makes me feel like home.
The music is really something special as well. It's not merely borrowing an occasional twang--it is unapologetic folk music. Albeit folk music that has been influenced by the delta blues, Southern spirituals and jazz. In Valerie's own words: "It's moonshine roots music." Produced by Kevin Augunas (Edward Sharpe & the Magnetic Zeros, ZZ Ward) and Dan Auerbach of the Black Keys, this album has just enough modern sensibilities to make it much more accessible than old 1920s recordings of traditional Appalachian music.Read more ›
counterpart to Otis Taylor--blending to various degrees Jazz, Soul, Folk, Rock
and Blues into a united "rootsie" whole. If the first song (Workin' Woman blues)on Ms. June's new album was played by Otis Taylor with his daughter
Cassie singing you would not argue that it was one of his compositions and
arrangements, especially with the lovely horn work. With further listening
though you find some distinct differences--in some songs there is a decidedly
"garage rock" sound that you don't really find in Otis Taylor's music.
Dan Auerbach's production and guitar work seems to have had a lot to do
with the brilliance and character of this record, his gritty production
seems to perfectly balance Valerie's pure childlike voice and add real spice
to her sometimes simple, stark songs. Let's hope they do a few albums together as
this one has been stuck in my CD player since I got it. All the songs are great,
I especially find the title song, The Hour and Shotgun to be masterful.
It is good to see people like Ms. June, Otis
Taylor, The Carolina Chocolate Drops, Cold Specks etc. bring some
earthiness back to and not be embarrassed by their esthetically important musical heritage-- they are actually bringing something vital and fresh into the "retro
roots" mix. Buy this CD!
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Valerie June is such a wonderful artist... I love to listen to her style! I wish she would come tour near me again!!Published 1 month ago by Kendra
I go to the King Biscuit Blues Festival in downtown Helena, Arkansas every year. Several years ago I remember seeing this dreadlocked chick sitting on Cherry Street with just her... Read morePublished 1 month ago by Biscuit and Gravy
Great sound. Interesting voice. Nice blue-grassy sound. It grows on you.Published 2 months ago by Kent W. Wetherhold
I'm enthralled by Valerie June. I've listened to this album many, many times and it never gets old. Her voice and delivery are so nuanced and honest. Read morePublished 4 months ago by J. Pickle
I'm saddened that more people don't know about this amazing talent. I first caught her sound by way of NPR and was blown away. It's authentic clasic music without compromise. Read morePublished 5 months ago by Rich Nice