Grandpa Elliot – Sugar Sweet
Playing For Change Records, November 3, 2009
Grandpa Elliot, the famed, legendary and very animated New Orleans street musician releases his debut album Sugar Sweet. Grandpa Elliott has been entertaining audiences in the French Quarter for over sixty years, but his popularity has gone global in the last year after the Playing for Change hit viral video for “Stand By Me”, featuring 37 musicians from all over the world. Grandpa's mellow baritone makes the sounds of a busy New Orleans streets and the blues fall away all through his soulful singing and harmonica playing on these nine tracks.
1. Ain’t Nothing You Can Do
2. This Little Light of Mine (Medley)
3. Sugar Is Sweet
4. Baby, What You Want Me to Do
5. We’re Gonna Make It
6. Share Your Love With Me
7. Another Saturday Night
8. Fannie Mae (Live) – featuring the Playing For Change Band with Keb’ Mo
9. Please Come Home for Christmas
On the title track, the guitars of Jason Tamba from the DR Congo and Zimbabwe ’s Louis Mhlanga play a New Orleans style rumba with a hint of ska, while drummer Peter Bunetta lays down subtle percussion fills. Grandpa Elliott’s voice is fluid, with quicksilver phrasing that falls before and behind the beat, playing with rhythm and meter. “Ain’t Nothing You Can Do,” an early hit for Bobby “Blue” Bland, gets a makeover that combines the swing of Tamba and Mhlanga, with an R&B feel, Elliott’s vocal slips from a buoyant tenor to a playful, bluesy growl as he adds subtle harmonica accents. Grandpa Elliott learned “Share Your Love With Me” from an Aretha Franklin recording and the band gives it a stripped down, old school R&B reading. “Fannie Mae” was cut at a rousing live concert performance with Keb’ Mo’ sitting in on electric guitar, it includes a blazing harp solo from Grandpa Elliott and lets the band show off its considerable instrumental prowess.
To start, Big Dave and I love everything about the Playing For Change productions, mission and purpose – we are proud to support and promote their efforts. Folks, get all you can, Grandpa Elliot is the real deal. You can hear his passion in his music as his warm soul shines thru.
Peace and Love
Peter 'Cornbread' Cohen,