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Index of Artists

Eric Bibb

Biography:

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Jericho Road is an inspirational new CD from Eric Bibb and a cast of friends

With the release of Jericho Road, Eric Bibb has completed an ambitious project that has been several years in the making - and which features a cast of old and new friends from around the world.

Working with his long-time friend, producer Glen Scott, the songs on the new album focus on the harsh realities of today's conflict-ridden world - and the universal quest for freedom and peace.

Bibb explains: "The title refers to the road between Jerusalem and Jericho where the Good Samaritan stopped to help a stranger in need after better-off religious leaders had passed by and done nothing.

"On April 3, 1968, the night before his death, Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King urged us to follow the example of the Good Samaritan, saying: 'Ultimately, you cannot save yourself without saving others.'"

He added: "If this record has a theme, that's it in a nutshell: Have mercy, have a heart."

Jericho Road is Eric Bibb's fourth album for Stony Plain and follows Deeper in the Well (which won the 2013 Blues Music Award for "Acoustic Artist"), and Brothers in Bamako, the critically-acclaimed pairing of Bibb and West African singer/guitarist Habib Koité.

The American-born Bibb, who lives in Finland and who tours around the world, has further expanded his blues/roots palette to include even more exciting world music flavours. Guest artists include Swedish singer Andre De Lange (and one of his tracks, "Freedom Train," swings with a distinctly South African township sound), gospel singers Linda Tillery and Tammy Brown, folk/blues artist Ruthie Foster, a four-piece Swedish horn section, jazz bassist Victor Wooten, and Montreal banjo player Michael Jerome Browne. Producer and multi-instrumentalist Glen Scott plays almost a dozen different instruments on the recording, which was made in Sweden and the United Kingdom.

A background summary

Eric Bibb's father, Leon Bibb, certainly helped his son find his international career in music. An acclaimed singer in stage musicals and a senior figure on the New York folk scene of the 1960s, Leon gave his son his first guitar when he was seven, and introduced him to a who's-who of musical icons. Eric's godfather was actor singer and activist Paul Robeson; his uncle was jazz pianist and composer John Lewis. Family friends included Odetta, Pete Seeger and Josh White.

A professional player at 16, playing in the house band for his father's television talent show, Something New, Eric went on to study (psychology and Russian) at Columbia University. "After a while, though, it just didn't make much sense," he says now. "I didn't understand why I was at this Ivy League school with all these kids who didn't know anything about what I knew about." Aged 19, he left for Paris, where a meeting with American studio guitarist Mickey Baker focused his interest in blues guitar.

A few years later he moved to Sweden and settled in Stockholm, where he found a creative environment that, oddly, reminded him of his teenage days in Greenwich Village. He made a handful of albums, starting in 1972, and began meeting and playing with local musicians as well as newcomers from all over the world. He laughs: "There was a budding world music scene going on, long before it became a marketing concept."

His breakthrough album, Good Stuff, was released in 1997 and led to Eric signing to a British label, which in turn released Me to You, featuring appearances from some of his personal heroes, among them Pops and Mavis Staples and Taj Mahal.

The album furthered Bibb's international reputation and was followed by tours of the UK, the United States, Canada, France, Sweden and Germany. And so it went through the 90s and the first decade of the 21st century - he made consistently good records, and built audiences from Stockholm to Sydney, Vancouver to Vienna, Paris to Peoria, New Orleans to Newcastle, and from B.B. King's club in New York to the Bluebird Café in Nashville.

Over the course of many album releases over the years Bibb has been nominated for multiple Blues Music Awards in several categories. In addition to the Grammy-nominated Shakin' a Tailfeather children's album (with Taj Mahal and Linda Tillery and the Cultural Heritage Choir), other noted albums included Friends, which featured Odetta, Charlie Musselwhite, Guy Davis and Mahal as special guests. Two collaborations with his father (who lives in Vancouver) were A Family Affair and Praising Peace: A Tribute to Paul Robeson, which Stony Plain released in 2006. More recent was his 2010 Booker's Guitar, a tribute to blues pioneer Bukka White, on which he played White's steel-bodied National guitar.

A four-decade career, 36 albums, countless radio and television shows and non-stop touring have given Eric Bibb a world view that's tempered by curiosity and compassion, and the ability to see himself in other peoples' shoes.

Jericho Road

Jericho Road
SPCD 1370
Genre: Blues/World
Released: 5 November 2013

Jericho Road reflects the many musical influences that have informed Eric Bibb’s writing throughout his career: World music sounds, blues, folk and soul all find their way into the songs.

Eric gives a whole new meaning to the blues of the 21st Century, proving that the genre remains as lively and relevant as ever.

  1. Drinkin' Gourd (3:04)
  2. Freedom Train (3:25)
  3. Let The Mothers Step Up (3:32)
  4. Have A Heart (4:30)
  5. The Right Thing (4:10)
  6. Death Row Blues (3:45)
  7. Can't Please Everybody (4:36)
  8. The Lord's Work (3:30)
  9. With My Maker I Am One (4:37)
  10. They Know (4:06)
  11. She Got Mine (2:31)
  12. Good Like You (4:24)
  13. One Day At A Time (12:28) (includes bonus tracks: Now & Nanibali)

Reviews:

Living Blues Magazine #228 Dec 2013
By Melanie Young
"Eric Bibb's Jericho Road is an ultimately uplifiting journey"

Brothers In Bamako

Brothers In Bamako
SPCD 1362
Genre: World/Blues
Released: 6 November 2012

On the pathways between Memphis & Mali’s capital, Bamako, is the musical crossroad of Habib Koité and Eric Bibb. Uniting two soulful histories into a never-before heard guitar sound that is passionate and ebullient.

Growing up in Mali, West Africa, Koité is heir to an ancestral knowledge set to song that places him among the most influential voices of contemporary Africa.

Bibb’s lineage in the traditional blues sound has produced an earthy mix of folk and gospel dating back to the work songs of the deep south.

Forging a bridge across the Atlantic, Bibb and Koité are two talents too exhilarating to ignore with this collaboration.

  1. On My Way To Bamako (3:15)
  2. L.A. (5:38)
  3. Touma Ni Kelen/Needed Time (4:41)
  4. Tombouctou (4:03)
  5. We Don't Care (4:01)
  6. Send Us Brighter Days (3:58)
  7. Nani Le (2:32)
  8. Khafolé (4:19)
  9. With My Maker I Am One (4:26)
  10. Foro Bana (5:25)
  11. Mami Wata (1:36)
  12. Blowin' In The Wind (4:46)
  13. Goin' Down The Road Feelin' Bad (4:01)

Reviews:

Living Blues
By Stephen A. King
Brothers In Bamako is worthy of a Grammy nomination.

Deeper In The Well

Deeper In The Well
SPCD 1360
Genre: Blues
Released: 27 March 2012

Eric Bibb's Deeper in the Well is a unique combination of traditional and contemporary Louisiana music. Acclaimed folk blues singer/songwriter/guitarist Eric Bibb is backed by an all-star Louisiana band including multi-instrumentalist Dirk Powell, fiddler Cedric Watson, drummer Danny Devillier and harmonica player Grant Dermody. Special guests include Michael Jerome Browne, Jerry Douglas and Christine Balfa.

Eric Bibb is one of the highest profile roots musicians, having been nominated for multiple Blues Music Awards and a Grammy. He will be touring extensively throughout 2012.

Download the video to lead track Bayou Belle.

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  1. Bayou Belle (Listen to mp3 clip) (4:13)
    * free full length download *
  2. Could Be You, Could Be Me (2:39)
  3. Dig A Little Deeper In The Well (4:07)
  4. Money In Your Pocket (4:16)
  5. Boll Weevil (3:26)
  6. Sinner Man (4:53)
  7. In My Time (3:48)
  8. Music (3:40)
  9. Movin' Up (2:54)
  10. No Further (3:41)
  11. Every Wind In The River (4:38)
  12. Sittin' In A Hotel Room (2:49)
  13. The Times They Are A Changin' (5:44)

Reviews:

About.com Best Blues Albums of 2012
By Reverend Keith A. Gordon

 "Bibb has delivered another gem"

Praising Peace A Tribute to Paul Robeson

Praising Peace A Tribute to Paul Robeson
SPCD 1318
Genre: Folk/Blues
Released: 16 May 2006
  1. The Prelude (Ol' Man River) (:37)
  2. Joe Hill (2:44)
  3. Praising Peace (4:07)
  4. Put On Your Robes Son (3:51)
  5. Motherless Child (3:33)
  6. Home In That Rock (2:40)
  7. Weepin' Mary (1:33)
  8. The House I Live In (2:34)
  9. Shenandoah / The Water is Wide (4:01)
  10. On Our Journey (4:01)
  11. Danny Boy (3:40)
  12. Deep River (2:10)
  13. Ol' Man River (2:47)
  14. A Friend Like You (3:52)
  15. A Friend Like You (3:52)
  16. A Friend Like You (3:52)