More new music from the Old School: Marc Broussard, Madeleine Peyroux
I love it when an artist can breathe fresh life into old songs or even just an old sound. Today, I have two artists who do just that with sincerity and extraordinary energy.
Marc Broussard, from Carencro, Louisiana, is the son of Hall of Fame guitarist Ted Broussard (The Boogie Kings). Since he left his Christian band in 2001, he has released four albums. Though I’m not writing about his 2004 release Carencro today, I do want you to give a listen to Home from that album. Make sure you stick around for the second half of the song, when they really get it going.
In 2007, Marc released S.O.S.: Save Our Soul, an album entirely comprised of covers of 60’s soul tunes. Now I will confess that this album breaks my rule about covers: he really doesn’t do much new with the songs. He plays them straight. That said, the tight arrangements and spot on vocal stylings had me bouncing in my seat when I first heard it. That’s hard to do with me. This album is a love song to the genre from an obvious true fan. Three tracks in particular grabbed me:
- You Met Your Match – A lesser-known Stevie Wonder tune. If you’re going to take on one of Stevie’s funky rockers, man, you better bring the energy. Marc does. The horns pop, the guitars jump out of the corners of the beat, and Marc stretches for – and hits – the soulful high notes.
- If I Could Build My Whole World Around You – This is a sweet song originally done by Marvin Gaye. I don’t know who sings Tammi Terrell’s half of the duet, but she does a great job. The band lays back on this groove to let the vocals stand front and center.
- Inner City Blues (Make Me Wanna Holler) – They perfectly capture the feel of this mournful soul classic.
Next up is Madeleine Peyroux. She works in the jazz singer/crooner tradition. I will tell you exactly what she sounds like. She is a perfect cross between Norah Jones and Billie Holiday, which in her case is a very good thing. Check out her 2004 release, Careless Love. I pulled 5 tracks off for my iPod.
- Don’t Wait Too Long – OK, to continue with my comparison above. This sounds like Norah Holiday covering a Rickie Lee Jones song. You will like it.
- Don’t Cry Baby – The only thing that keeps the sad vocals, vamping guitars, and noodling piano from sounding like a 1940’s classic is the Hammond organ.
- You’re Gonna Make Me Lonesome When You Go – A sweet and simple version of the Dylan classic. I think the thing I like most about it is it doesn’t sound like anyone else. Musically, this track is the most uniquely Madeline’s on the disc.
- Weary Blues – This is what I mean by reinterpretation in a cover. She completely regrooves this Hank Williams tune and makes it project a feel Hank never intended, but would be tickled by, I think.
- This Is Heaven to Me – I love the dreamy chimes that back this beautiful song. Pretty, pretty stuff.
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