Simple Case of the Blues
The Last Music Company
Rosie Flores was born in San Antonio, lived in San Diego and now resides in Austin. The guitarist/vocalist is an artist who blends rockabilly, honky-tonk, Western swing and blues. Flores released her self titled debut recording in 1987 on the Reprise Record label. In 1995 she recorded “Rockabilly Filly” on Hightone Records with special guests Janis Martin and vocalist Wanda Jackson.
This is Flores’ thirteenth recording. The album features an all-star band featuring guitarists Flores and Kenny Vaughan (who played with Lucinda Williams); Charlie Sexton (formerly with Bob Dylan), rhythm guitar and percussion; Dave Roe, bass (recorded with Johnny Cash); and Jimmy Lester, drums. Additional musicians include T. Jarrod Bonta, keyboards; Mike Flanigin (Jimmie Vaughan), Hammond B3; Cindy Cashdollar, lap steel; Greg Izor, harmonica; and the horn section of Greg Williams, sax; Kevin Flatt, trumpet; and Paul Deemer, trombone. Background vocalists include Robert Kraft, Sheree Smith, Michael Hale and Ange Kogutz. The album is co-produced by Sexton, Vaughan and Roe.
Flores states “Simple Case of the Blues” was a long time coming… “I got infatuated with the blues in high school. It was the first music I ever played”. Flores returns to the music that first inspired her with new arrangements of selected covers including “Love Don’t Love Nobody”, written and first recorded by New Orleans legend Roy Brown in 1954, while she trades licks with Vaughan. “I Want To Do More”, from the songwriting team of Jerry Leiber and Michael Stoller and originally waxed by Ruth Brown and Her Rhythmakers on Atlantic Records in 1956, features the horns and Bonta on piano. Also from 1956 is the infectious call and response of “Till The World Runs Dry” written and recorded by Wynona Carr; and Ella Johnson’s “That’s What You Gotta Do”. The Wilson Pickett co-authored “If You Need Me” recorded by him in 1968 was recorded five years earlier by Solomon Burke. Flores’ dedication to the R n’ B genre is firmly established with the inclusion of these chestnuts.
Flores’ vocal clarity is heard again on the Dwight Yoakum penned “If There Was A Way”; and on the gospel infused “Mercy Fell Like Rain” with Flores’ once again lighting it up on guitar.
“Drive, Drive, Drive” featuring Izor on harp, and the title track “Simple Case of the Blues” were co-written by Flores with Rachel Cladstone. “Teenage Rampage” is an instrumental by Flores and Vaughan. “Enemy Hands” is from bassist Roe.
Flores is an accomplished recording artist who is a delight on “Simple Case of the Blues”, her first blues outing. I hope she continues on her path to discovery.