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Adam Holt

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The Alabama-based southern rocker and bluesman Adam Holt is a guitarist but he started out playing trumpet, so it's no surprise that the title of his new album, Kind of Blues, is an homage to one of the greatest trumpet players of all time. "The name is a nod to Kind of Blue, the album made famous by Miles Davis, which I know very well," says Holt. "Trumpet was the first instrument I played, beginning in middle school, all the way through college. I listened to Kind of Blue many nights while I worked on my analog recording gear, compressors, preamps and tape machines, which I used to make this record."

Holt is backed on Kind of Blues by guest players on bass, slide guitar, pedal steel, drums and keyboards but alas there is nary a trumpet to be heard. Holt himself plays both acoustic and electric guitars on the record as well as piano and organ, and he handles all the vocal parts. The singer states that the title Kind of Blues indicates "a reflection of the styles within the sound of the album; a blend of blues, country, Americana and rock 'n' roll." Holt penned all but one of the songs here, with "Don't Give up on Me Baby" being a soulful and sweet mid-tempo southern rocker, reminiscent of something that the late Gregg Allman might have done; "Bobby" on the other hand is a mournful modern country song (with a killer guitar solo) about the instability that comes along with cocaine use. "Before I Trusted You" is a mid-album highlight about mistrust with lyrics like "I'd give my vote to Nixon before I trusted you," with music that sounds as ominous as the lyrics. "Give the Dog a Bone" finds Holt in an upbeat mood, and no wonder; the song has him portraying a man who comes home to find his woman, well, rarin' to go. And fans of Creedence Clearwater Revival will hear familiar sounds in "The Bourgeoisie." A cover of Bob Dylan's "Lay Lady, Lay" closes the album.

Holt has previously released an album called The Sunday Troubadour and he has also released an EP featuring a couple of songs he cut at Sun Studios in Memphis, versions of Howlin' Wolf's "Killing Floor" and the Johnny Cash chestnut "Folsom Prison Blues." Holt has shows scheduled throughout August; find a list of dates and more here.


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