Wednesday, March 21, 2012

CD Review: “Can’t Control Myself” by Gina Sicilia

Gina Sicilia2

Can't Control Myself

Pigeon holes are for pigeons, not this Philadelphia songstress who hits me as the best American female blues singer since Susan Tedeschi, and has the soulful chops of a young Bonnie Raitt. She’s got a voice that is old and bleeds blues beyond her 25 years, she’s got an earthy quality that belies a Temple University Journalism degree. She’s got a ‘tease’ in that voice that speaks of years on the bawdy roadhouse circuit, except she hasn’t been there. She also writes songs that run the gambit from 2 beat country to jazz and  all the time reflecting on and paying tribute to song writers that aren’t immediately apparent as influence in her performance or her own songs. Stevie Wonder’s “A Place In The Sun” sung as a straight ahead, Americana ballad, Willie Dixons “Crazy Bout You”, delivered as a mid-tempo blues rocker.

The instrumentation aids in blurring the lines; Hammond B3 organ and accordion, Wurlitzer pianos with baritone and tenor sax, lap steel with toy pianos. As crazy as it sounds, it works and hooks the listeners from the start. It’s easy to see why she was nominated for a 2008 Blues Music Award in the category of 'Best New Artist Debut'.

“Addicted” by Gina Sicilia

Sicilia recorded her first album, Allow Me to Confess in 2007 and she was hailed by none other than JazzReview as "the best blues singer on the music scene today”. This led to a second album, Hey Sugar and extensive touring which culminated with an invite to the Legendary Rhythm and Blues Cruise in 2011.

On  Can't Control Myself she seems to explore a more roots sound, while still keeping that link to the blues. Anything you want to call it, she has star quality with a powerful voice that seems to be right at home in a large number of genres. She’s also more than capable as a song writer. “Addicted” is simply, well,  addicting, and “Before The Night Is Through” sounds like something that the Great Sam Cooke could have written and it’s ‘almost reggae’ feeling would hit on many radio formats.


And if the abundant musical talent isn’t enough, she’s also got stage presences usually found in seasoned performers and is more than easy on the eye. 

Catch this lady who has shows scheduled in the New England area through May, but ventures to the Midwest in June. Here’s the schedule and while you are there, signup for her mailing list.


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Copyright © 2012 Robert Carraher All Rights Reserved

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