Reverend Freakchild has just released a new album called Preachin’ Blues, and on it, that is exactly what he does. Preachers have always found music a powerful tool to share a message, and so does Freakchild.
Freakchild has experimented with many blues-based styles but this one is purely traditional..The songs were all recorded live in the KBOO Studio in Portland, OR, except for “Grinnin’ In Your Face,” recorded in concert at the Knickerbocker Jazz Club in Berlin, Germany. Each song, whether a traditional blues, an original, or even an acoustic version of Prince’s “Kiss,” illustrates the short “preachin'” section that comes before it, in which the Reverend shares truths that resonate with both his own Tibetan Buddhist beliefs and Christian beliefs.
I love to hear Reverend Freakchild talk,with his laid-back, not too serious style, but even if you don’t care for the preaching, if you like traditional blues you can do what many before you have done and go for the music. This is blues the way the ones before did it: solo, acoustic, and without any fancy tricks. It’s just a man, a voice, a guitar and a harmonica.
Aside from the Reverend’s own “Holy Breathing Blues” and “All I Got Is Now” and the previously mentioned Prince song, Freakchild shows his ability to deliver pure blues from the past. Blind Lemon Johnson’s “See That My Grave Is Kept Clean.” and the traditional “in My Time of Dyin’, and “Wish I Was In Heaven Sitting Down” would be at home with the istreet-corner preacher of the past. That blues man could get a bit caustic with Son House’s “Preachin’ Blues” and “Grinnin’ In Your Face,” and then smooth everything out with Rev. Gary Davis’ joyful sing-along “It’s Gonna Be Alrght.”
Reverend Freakchild may not preach quite the same traditional message most of us are used to, but the blues message comes through loud and clear. He’s the real deal and he will leave you feeling good.
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