Saturday, September 13, 2014

Sena Ehrhardt - Live My Life




2014 – Blind Pig Records
By Phillip Smith; Sep. 13, 2014

Live My Life, the third studio release from Minnesota native, Sena Ehrhardt, is a true gem of an album.  Ehrhardt is backed by a tight new group of musicians fronted by guitarist/songwriter Cole Allen.  To top things off, the legendary David Z returned to his old Minnesotan stomping grounds, being called in to produce and mix.    

Ehrhardt reminds us how great the range is on her voice, as she lets loose on “Stakes Have Gone Up”, an energetic opener, blending contemporary country with blues.  Special guest, Smokin’ Joe Kubek breaks out the slide guitar on “Things You Shouldn’t Need to Know”.  I really like this track.  It reminds me of the early Jefferson Airplane years, with its sexy and sultry vocals riding atop lush bluesy guitar riffs and a splash of psychedelia.  Cole rocks out with intensity, as he throws down the gauntlet with heavy licks and head-banging riffs, ripping it up on “Did You Ever Love Me At All”. This one is blues rock at its best.    

Digging deep, Ehrhardt blows the dust off the old Leon Russell penned classic, “Help Me Through the Day”, recorded by Freddy King.  Modified slightly to switch the point of reference from male to female, this track is performed with perfection.  With Jimi “Primetime” Smith joining in on rhythm guitar and Bruce McCabe on piano, this sounds so good, I wouldn’t change a thing.

Being the amazing singer she is, Ehrhardt has once more outdone herself.  Based on this album, I’d be very surprised if she wasn’t nominated for Contemporary Blues Female Artist for the 2015 Blues Music Awards.