New York native Eric Bibb has had enough musical education for a lifetime’s worth of material. His godfather was Paul Robeson, and his uncle was John Lewis of Modern Jazz Quartet fame. So, it’s no surprise that Bibb on his most recent offering, Get On Board, has chosen his quality compositions astutely.
Get On Board is one of those recordings you flip on to while away the hours on a summer day. It’s easy to connect to, and the track selection moves along at a natural pace. Bibb is a bluesman’s blues artist. He makes the rhythms and textures of the melodies come alive on songs like "River Blues" and "Pockets." He is joined by a slide guitar wielding Bonnie Raitt on "If Our Heart’s Ain’t In It" and blues belting legend Ruthie Foster on a rousing "Conversation."
Produced and mixed by Glen Scott in Nashville, Get On Board gets off to a rich gospel beginning on "Spirit I Am." The Tennessee landscape provides the backdrop for the shuffling march of "New Beale Street Blues." And, if the title number is any indication, Eric Bibb is bound to be around a long time, adding scintillating layers to his country’s formidable patchwork musical quilt.
Get On Board is out now on Telarc.