Album review: ERIC BIBB – Dear America

ERIC BIBB - Dear America

Provogue Records/Mascot Label Group [Release date 10.09.21]

Eric Bibb returns with possibly his most timely release to date, as Bibb explains the album “…a love letter, because America, for all of its associations with pain and its bloody history, has always been a place of incredible hope and optimism.”

Bibb has rounded up an impressive cast of guest musicians appearing on this album with him including singer songwriter Shaneeka Simon, bassist Tommy Sims (Bruce Springsteen. Bonnie Raitt), drummer Steve Jordan (the Rolling Stones, John Mayer) and blues guitarist Eric Gales.

Shaneeka Simon duets with Bibb on ‘Born Of A Woman’, a hard hitting song about the mistreatment of women. Eric Gales adds some superlative blues guitar to ‘Whole World’s Got The Blues’, a song that shows blues and its message are timeless.

The title track is a plea to his fellow countrymen to stop the country’s slide into extremism and don’t let the hatred win. Musically the classic blues beat with a modern touch works a treat. A song like this shows how powerful music can be. We just need people to heed the words…

There are some lighter moments to be had though such as on ‘Whole Lotta Lovin’, a lovely tribute to his musical upbringing and the joyful side of life. ‘Tell Yourself’ is a real pick me up song, one to play every day to start your day in a positive way.

Upbeat bit of soul with a blues swing on ‘Love’s Kingdom’, which features Tommy Sims and Glen Scott. Lisa Mills duets on ‘One-ness Of Love’, where her soulful, rich tones meld perfectly with Bibb’s. Sees the album out on a high.

Eric Bibb has made an album for the times, full of classic blues sounds adding his own unique touch. One for blues lovers and anyone who enjoys fine music with a meaningful message. ****

Review by Jason Ritchie

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