Blind Lemon Pledge | Evangeline

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by Blind Lemon Pledge

On his 4th album, Blind Lemon Pledge many streams of American Music. From jump jive to deep blues, New Orleans beats to salsa heat, with a touch of hear-tugging ballads, saloon rock and even a surprising take on southern prison chants a la John Lomax.
Genre: Blues: Blues Vocals
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  Song Share Time Download
1. Buley's Farm
3:17 $0.99
2. Jennie Bell
4:06 $0.99
3. Brimstone Joe
4:23 $0.99
4. Midnight Assignation
3:45 $0.99
5. Go Jump the Willie
3:07 $0.99
6. Language of Love
4:34 $0.99
7. Ham and Eggs
3:01 $0.99
8. How Can I Still Love You
4:46 $0.99
9. You Had Me At Goodbye
4:14 $0.99
10. Evangeline
6:01 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes

The harsh rattle of work gang chants, the lilting blues of a New Orleans speakeasy, the biting rock of a Southern roadhouse, the quick percussion of a Latin combo, the haunting slide of a Delta holler, and the touching romanticism of heartfelt ballads all combine in a tasty gumbo that is “Evangeline”, the latest album from San Francisco based singer/songwriter/producer/multi-instrumentalist Blind Lemon Pledge.

Releasing in time for Summer 2014, Mr. Pledge (aka James Byfield) has combined diverse array of styles, while his songwriting sensibilities make the whole project come together. Says Byfield “I wanted to do an album that really captured the different influences that have gone into my songwriting. I was fortunate to be able to hone each arrangement to capture the feeling of the variety of genres.” Listening to the album is like taking a tour through America’s roots musical legacy with overtones of deep Southern blues, Hoagy Carmichael swing, and almost Byrds-like melodicism.

Working from his Bay Area studio, James Byfield fronts two performing bands and composes and records his songs. “Evangeline” is his fourth album as Blind Lemon Pledge. “I Would Rather Go Blind”, his 2010 album of classic blues and originals was named by KPIG Radio as one of the Top Albums of the year. It was also named in the Top 100 Singer/Songwriter Albums by iTunes Ireland and iTunes Austria. All of his albums have received international airplay and sales.

With “Evangeline”, Blind Lemon Pledge hopes to reach across musical genres and find a new audience for his unique blend of Americana and Blues styles.

The album opens with “Buley’s Farm” an acoustic field holler with a cigar box guitar backing. Byfield comments “I have always loved the sound of those old John Lomax chain gang recordings. And I wanted to do a modern take on the genre while still keeping the sound and feel of the old recordings.”

Very quickly, the album shifts gears and moves into “Jennie Bell”, a folk ballad which continues some of the themes introduced in the first song, while hinting at the variety of styles that are set to come throughout the album. “Brimstone Joe”, a dark and devil-tinged blues with a decidedly New Orleans feel comes next, leading, after a long fade, into “Midnight Assignation”, a roadhouse rocker with a mean slide guitar sound reminiscent of early Allman Brothers. The first four songs create a mini song cycle reflecting the movement of blues from the country to the city.

As the album progresses we are treated to “Go Jump the Wille” – Jump Jive ala Louis Jordan; a salsa tinged trip to Puerto Rico in “Language of Love”; a Cole Porterish “Ham and Eggs”; “How Can I Still Love You” – a jazz/blues number reminiscent of Mose Allison; and a Byrds-like folk rock ballad with “You Had Me at Goodbye”. The album ends in a musical bookend with another roots number, the title song “Evangeline”. This deep blues is accompanied by acoustic slide and echoes the country blues of Son House and other greats of the genre.

Sit back and travel with Blind Lemon Pledge as he takes you down the musical streams of American Music.



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