Blues and Soul Music Magazine

Issue 1088

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Review

Samantha Fish: âWild Heartâ (Ruf Records)

Samantha Fish CD Cover pic

9

6.1

Rate this Album

UK release date 09.06.2015

Can girls really play guitar? Hell yeah. Go ask Bonnie Raitt and Susan Tedeschi.

Go back even further to the 1940s and check out the massively under-appreciated Gospel heroine Sister Rosetta Tharpe, with her incredible futuristic licks on that big ole Gibson L-5.

In 2015 thereâs a wealth of talented chicks with picks on the International blues scene. The likes of Joanne Shaw Taylor and Chantel McGregor flying the UK flag.

Fast rising to top spot is US artist Samantha Fish. Her new album, âWild Heartâ is a must have. A strong country flavour, but the blues and soul never far from the surface.

The song-writing is exemplary and her performance on guitar takes your breath away at times. On top of full-on, soulful vocals that command attention.

âWild Heartâ is a coming of age - but at only 26-years-old, this is her third studio album release since her debut in 2102 (and sheâs featured on the 2015 live âGirls With Guitarsâ CD too.

âWild Heart,â is such an accomplished album, and a lot of that is down to producer Luther Dickinson, (The North Mississippi Allstars/Black Crowes) who helped capture Samanthaâs true essence.

Itâs got the lot; power, energy, attitude and superb song-writing chops. Grammy Award-Winning drummer Brady Blade (Emmylou Harris/Bob Dylan) deserves big props too, providing the backbone of the whole set.

A dozen tracks, five of which she co-wrote with Nashville country hit maker Jim McCormack. Five songs Samantha wrote by herself and there are two perfect fit covers: Charley Pattonâs, âJim Lee Blues Pt. 1,â and âIâm In Love, a Jimmy Kimbrough tune.

âHighway's Holding Me Now,â is a stone-cold, killer track. Great hook, sassy vocal and a dirty, raw, Keef Richards- style tone to die for on guitar.

The stupendous âTurn It Up,â finds that greasy groove and nails it. âShow Me,â is an exceptional cut and really nails her colours to the mast. THIS is THE sound of Samantha Fish.

The guitar cuts through like a bitch across this whole thing. With that Albert Collins/Lonnie Mack attack - tearing your spleen out one minute and stroking your face with a doveâs feather the next.

She doesnât need digital skulduggery to make her sound bloody awesome. Itâs all in the fingers babyâ¦.

This fish is a real prize catch. She ainât trading on anything other than, as she put it when we spoke recently; being âBad Ass.â Amen to that sister.
Words SIMON REDLEY

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