What does deep south France and Southern Rock have in common? The correct answer is a band, the Bootleggers. And they’ve recently released a new Indie album entitled Southern Roads.
In the vein of ZZ Top, the twang of electric guitars and hard rocking beat defines the Bootleggers. Band leader, lead vocalist and acoustic guitar player, Didier Cere sets the tone for their music. Point Blank’s guitarist, Rusty Burns who passed away before the CD was released, Van Wilks and Neal Black from San Antonio join in on the project.
The album kicks off with Van Wilks’ “Sometimes You Run.” Having heard Van’s original version, I have to give the Bootleggers kudos for their rendition of this hard-rocking song. You cannot listen and sit still.
“Short Change Hero” written by Kelvin Claude Swaby and made popular by The Heavy is the second track, followed by “Sending Me Angels,” a Delbert McClinton tune, which switches to a soulful tempo showing the diversity of this group.
“10 Million Slaves” penned by Otis Taylor features one of the most important American Artists on the blues scene, Neal Black on electric guitar.
The next track came as a surprise. “Negro Prison Blues,” written by Alan Lomax starts out acapella and moves into a beautiful instrumental featuring the slide guitar of Claude Zanglois.
The Bootleggers interpretation of “John The Revelator” by Blind Willie Johnson is simplistic and organic. Didier Cere shines on the vocals.
Neal Black penned “Hangman Tree,” and in the truest depiction of southern rock with a heavy drum beat and slide guitar, it is an easy favorite.
“Spirit in the Sky,” topped the charts worldwide in 1969. Written and released by Norman Greenbaum, it became one of the most recognizable songs on the radio. The Bootleggers did a rocking version in the spirit of the song with some outstanding harmonica work by Nico Wayne Toussaint. Dick Burnett’s “Man of Constant Sorrow” brings this album to a close in a surprising way. I have to say I am impressed by the vocals on this album and the versatility of the musicians. For more info visit https://www.reverbnation.com/bootleggers
Watch a Video of the BOOTLEGGERS Performing live! Video Link
I hope you enjoyed meeting a new and unique group of artists. It’s not often I get a chance to review a CD from a band in France.