Groovin’ at the Crosse Roads
2015 – Ruf Records
By Phillip Smith; Jan 9, 2016
There’s always been some damn good music pouring out of the Mississippi Delta, and the spigot is far from being turned off. Caught in that wave of music is Heather Crosse‘s magnificently bodacious rocking blues band, Heavy Suga’ & the Sweetones. Formed in Hot Springs, Arkansas in 2007, Crosse moved the band to Clarksdale, Mississippi in 2008. Groovin’ at the Crosse Roads is eleven tracks of boogie-laced blues produced by non-other than multi-Grammy Award winner Jim Gaines. With Crosse taking on lead vox and bass in the band, she is joined by guitarist Dan Smith, drummer Lee Williams, and Mark Yacovone on piano/keys.
Crosse hooks me quick with her sultry performance of “My Man Called Me”. Smith’s guitar licks and Yacovone’s piano prowess solidifies this intoxicating mix of swing and electric blues. I love their funky cover of Clarence “Blowfly” Reid’s 1974 sexy B-side “Rockin’ Chair”. Slathered in a laid-back Seventies vibe, this wonderful throwback conjures up visions of big collars and flare jeans. Crosse adds just the right amount of rasp as she takes on Big Mama Thornton’s powerful classic “You Don’t Move Me No More”. Not only does Crosse nail the vocals, but Yacovone’s piano performance shines brightly, reminding me a bit of the “Killer”, Jerry Lee Lewis. This one is fun indeed.
Simply put, Groovin’ at the Crosse Roads is a delightful listen.
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