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Bill Phillippe

Arkansas Street Records

Review by David Bowling


Ghosts is an appopriate name for this new album by Bill Phillippe as it is immersed in the music of the past or the blues of the early 20th century to be more exact.

Bill Phillippe has combined a number of original compositions and some traditional blues numbers into an album that would have found a home in the 1920’s Southern Delta.

Phillippe keeps it pure and simple as it is just him, his acoustic guitar, and voice. His interpretations of Robert Johnson’s “Come On In My Kitchen” and the traditional “Keep Your Lamp Trimmed And Burning,” “Motherless Children,” “God Don’t Never Give Change,” “In My Time Of Dying,”and “You’re Gonna Need Somebody On Your Bond” are all raw and passionate. When you add in such original tunes as the personal “Big Bill’s Dream,” the poignant “Ballad Of Blind Willie,” and “Death Letter;” you have an album that does justice to blues history.

Ghosts is the result of 20 years of constant performing in small clubs and lounges, plus developing a guitar style that suits the solo nature of his sound and style. It is an excellent listen for anyone in touch with the heritage of the blues.

Rating: ***1/2