Acoustic Burnside

Duwayne Burnside

Dolceola Records, 2022

REVIEW BY: Tom Haugen


A Grammy nominated bluesman and former member of The North Mississippi Allstars, Duwayne Burnside returns with his first new album in 17 years, consisting of acoustic tracks recorded between June 2018 and September 2019 in and around his hometown of Holly Springs, Mississippi. my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250

Burnside places the warm, Southern blues of “Going Down South” in the lead off position, as plenty of rawness enters the spontaneous climate. “Juniper Hanging On The Line” then follows with a swifter pace of meticulous acoustic guitar and soaring vocals, and “Poor Black Mattie” continues the grittiness with no shortage of rhythm in the infectious delivery.

Entering the middle, the bouncy spirit of the playful “Alice Mae” makes this one of the best, while “Dust My Broom” flows with a genuine and powerful approach that highlights Burnside's inimitable pipes and superb six string manipulation. “Stay All Night” another excellent track, then emits a romantic angle with firm strumming and a very soulful charm.

Edging close to the end, just when you think the guitar playing couldn't get more exciting, “44 Pistol” gets quite complicated, with a mesmerizing tone, and “Lord Have Mercy On Me” exits with a timeless gospel demeanor that’s complemented with makeshift drumming to make it even more memorable.

Burnside’s father is the legendary country-blues player R.L. Burnside, and his formative years playing with his father certainly have left an indelible imprint on his craft. You’ll also notice nods to B.B. King and Jimi Hendrix, which no one could have a problem with, and hints of folk, funk and country are present across the entire 12 tracks.

Additionally, Dan Torigoe (who also plays piano on a track) provides liner notes that give us insight to Burnside's past, how this excellent record came to be, and just how deeply it honors his father and the community that shaped his talents.

Rating: A-

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