Music Picks Review
City Paper (Philadelphia)
Beaucoup Blue “Hearts at Home”
It’s rare you’ll see a father/son duo like Beaucoup Blue in these parts. “Yeah, we do run into it touring down south,” notes Adrian Mowry. “My earliest memories are of watching my dad play in clubs.” Early enough that Adrian was sitting under the table peeping up at David Mowry playing the blues and other acoustic guitar stuff, at legendary places like Club 47 in Cambridge and the original Main Point. “I always wanted to be like him. But I was shy, so I’d close myself away and practice.” Adrian was 16 or 17 when he finally let David know he was ready to play out. It’s been pretty steady since then. The pair expanded for a while to a quartet and have now tightened back up to an acoustic duo. “Hearts at Home” (self-released) is an example of the duo’s philosophy: a love of acoustic roots, with blues and swing featured. But, as Adrian notes, if you love the styles enough, you can’t help but be inspired to create some originals in the same vein.
this review was featured in Sing Out! Magazine
Beaucoup Blue, with apologies to Ringo, is the Philadelphia based guitar playing father and son duo of David and Adrian Mowry. The two have been performing their acoustic, blues based folk music up and down the Eastern Seaboard since Adrian was a teenager. Joined here by concordant drummer, percussionist and harmonica player Jim Salamone, the pair soulfully mix up eight top notch originals with inventive, distinctively styled covers of songs by Benny Goodman (a delightfully finger picker “Stompin’ at the Savoy”), blues singers John Lee Hooker and Elmore James, Tony Joe White (the most dolorous version of “Rainy Night in Georgia” you’ll ever hear) and Kid Ory.
Throughout, their voices work superbly together, frequently attaining a mesmeric panache that must be thrilling to view in person, while their fret board and arranging skills are evident immediately. Three originals that close the album are particularly illustrative. A melodic, dream-like confessional, “Heartache On Horizon”, is followed by the Dylanesque “I Surrender” (a notesabounding journey of tempos, tones and feelings) and the lyrical, slowly unwinding title song, about hard times, flashes of starlight and the ongoing search for peace and understanding. Also peerless are the pair’s deceptively easy going treatment of the traditional “Make Me a Pallet On Your Floor”, with mellow, inter-locking slide and fingerpicked asides and David’s passionately swaggering vocal, and yet another Mowry composition – the bluesy, harmonica – enhanced “I Heard Gabriel Singing”.
Beaucoup Blue is a versatile, imaginative team that has something to say and say it with an adventurous sense of personality from the bottom of their hearts.