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Mississippi Mick

Mick Kolassa

CD Baby 2014

Review by David Bowling

 

Mick Kolassa has been playing the blues all of his life and has finally gotten around to releasing an album. While he was born in Michigan; he has lived in Mississippi for the past 20 years.

His decades of playing the blues shines through as he brings his experiences to a number of cover tunes and original compositions. In support of his vocals and acoustic guitar playing are electric/acoustic guitarist Jeff Jensen, bassist Bill Ruffino, drummer Doug McMinn, and keyboardist Chris Stephenson. They are all veterans of the music scene and form a tight unit.

His Mississippi Mick is a fun trip though the blues. “Reefer Man” and “Burned That Bridge” have amusing stories set to memorable melodies. “Baby’s Got Another Lover” and “Blues Are All Around You” prove that he has a voice that can carry an album. “The Letter,” the 1967 number one pop hit by the Box Tops, is transformed into a smoldering blues classic. The old Jimmie Rodgers tune “Mississippi River Blues” is modernized without losing its patina.

Kolassa sits on the Board of Directors of The Blues Foundation, which is charitable organization. All proceeds from the album will go to the Hart Fund, which provides medical help for musicians and Generation Blues, which awards scholarships to needy young musicians. Kolassa’s donating all the profits to charity is admirable in this day and age.

Mississippi Mick is good music for a good cause which is a tough combination to beat.

Rating: ***1/2

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