- The Blues in Me — Live in Concert
- Doug MacLeod
- Black & Tan Records
From the first time I saw him perform live, in 2004, Doug MacLeod has been one of my favorite blues artists. This DVD illustrates why.
Just past 60 now, MacLeod began as a bass player, became a guitarist who backed such luminaries as Big Joe Turner, George “Harmonica” Smith, and Pee Wee Crayton, and for the last couple of decades has earned a deserved reputation as a solo singer, slide and finger-picking guitarist, and song composer. He is devoted to honoring and preserving the legacy of early 20th. Century performers, yet he writes almost all his own songs. He sees no contradiction, since he follows the advice of his first mentor, Ernest Banks: Write what you know about and feel.
This DVD was recorded at a club in the Netherlands in Nov. 2006, and captures MacLeod doing what he does best: making outstanding music and telling unpretentious stories in his open, inimitable style. The stories are often hilarious, sometimes poignant, and always heartfelt; his rapport with the audience is impressive. The songs vary from the doleful to the jocund, but each is completely involving. The guitar playing is masterful. Just watch and listen to one cut, “I Want You,” and see if you can stop there. Wow!
Added DVD bonuses include slides of MacLeod with many of his past colleagues and heroes, and an incredibly candid interview in which he discusses the salient (and major) travails in his life and his conquest of them through his music.
If you get to see him in person, don’t miss the opportunity. Meanwhile, and in addition, this DVD is a worthy part of any blues lover’s collection.