Davis Coen’s new 2009 release Magnolia Land was recorded in early-2007 and mid-2008 at the Delta Recording Service in Como, Mississippi. The sessions were overseen by seasoned studio proprietor Jimbo Mathus, who also played bass or joined in on electric guitar on many of the essentially live recorded studio cuts. Session musicians also include other North-Mississippi regional blues players, such as sure-handed drummer Kinney Kimbrough and steady-driving bassist Justin Showah (both currently in the touring band Afrissippi).
Magnolia Land is the first Coen album to stray completely from his much-noted Piedmont acoustic guitar style. Now Carolina-gone-North Mississippi, he showcases his flair for electrically charged arrangements rooted deeply in the musical environs present around the Hill Country and nearby Memphis where the recording sessions took place. Several tracks, including the album opener "Tired And Lonesome," also add the Hammond Organ accompaniment of Lance Ashley, who appeared on Coen’s previous 2008 release Blues Lights For Yours And Mine.
The 12-track album release features half Coen-originals, and the rest traditional blues, with a few interpretations of classic artist’s such as in Howlin’ Wolf’s "Natchez Burning" and Muddy Waters’ "You Gonna Miss Me."
Coen, who hails from South Carolina, has toured the southeast and mid-south U.S. extensively since his teens with various small combos, sharing concert bills or opening for classic blues artists as James Cotton, Junior Wells, Koko Taylor, Big Jack Johnson, Bobby Rush, David "Honeyboy" Edwards, T-Model Ford, Eddie Kirkland, and John Mayall & The Bluesbreakers. Recent accomplishments have included performances on the DVD documentary about Hill Country Blues and the music of the late-great Jesse Mae Hemphill, entitled Dare You To Do It Again, and original music on the DVD release of Martin Scorsese’s PBS special The Blues.