The American electric-blues guitarist and songwriter KIRK FLETCHER is renowned for his heartfelt and distinctive interpretations of modern blues.
His music has a way of conjuring up images of BB King and the kind of contemplation you might expect from dry-boogie therapist Dr. John.
The Californian musician has a distinguished resume that includes membership in the Fabulous Thunderbirds and the Mannish Boys, backing vocals for Joe Bonamassa and Eros Ramazzotti, and nominations for four Blues Music Awards.
Fletcher was a British Blues Awards nominee in 2015.
His next album Heartache By The Pound is due at the end of this month, and will be released on his newly launched independent label Ogierea Records.
Album opener, Shine A Light On Love is a carbonated perk of laid-back grooves, citrusy guitar licks, cloudbursts of quality musical expressiveness, and some gorgeous song-building harmonies.
The first single from the album Afraid To Die, Too Scared To Live is elegant, with elements of funk, soul and R&B nestled between sparkling blues guitar. In addition, there are beautiful horns and understated, but brilliant, backing choruses. The guitar is carefully expressive throughout, while Fletcher’s voice remains rich in character. This is a joyful, elegant, and ultra-smooth affair!
like being submerged into a chocolate syrup bath wearing a velvet nightgown…Raw Ramp Music Magazine
The album’s title track (music video shared below) has a freeway feel to it, with upbeat brass accents and pert ‘n’ perky beats (drummer Terrence F. Clark). Fletcher’s voice here is so soft & lusciously sexy that it’s like being submerged into a chocolate syrup bath wearing a velvet nightgown. And, like all the best soulful blues that’s ever been made, though this song’s lyrics are strong and deep, the lush melissonance of the musicality washes away any heartache you might feel.. If you love 60’s soul vibes, this one’s for you!
The Albert King number I’ve Made Nights By Myself (originally released as a B-side in 1960) is squooshily bumpalicious. The vocals are sincere, the beat foundation is clean and precise, and the guitar work is transformative.
And the Tarheel Slim number Wild Cat Tamer is an urgent and hasty hand-clapper with nimble piano (keyboardist Reese Wynans) pushed hard against urgent tangles of loquacious guitar. Yep, it’s a non-stop guitar-gliding joyride!
For fans of Delta groove and electric soul. Come grab it!
The album is released by Ogierea Records on Friday July 29th 2022
Available here: https://linktr.ee/kirkfletcher
Words:@neilmach 2022 ©
Main image: Mitch Conrad