With the Thanksgiving weekend kicking off a month of frenzied buying, almost anything is likely to happen on the blues chart over the next few weeks. But for the week ending December 1, 2012 it's pretty much the same old thing - a couple of Joe Bonamassa CDs, a couple of Gary Clark, Jr. discs and, of course, a pair of Tedeschi Trucks Band albums all dominating the top ten. Hugh Laurie makes his return to the chart with his 2011 album Let Them Talk, the disc racking up an amazing 63 weeks in the top twenty, much of it in the upper reaches of the top ten. I expect Laurie to linger a while through Christmas, and wouldn't be surprised to see the Wynton Marsalis/Eric Clapton album from last year return as well.
Cold Specks, the musical alter-ego of the Canadian-born, London-based, self-proclaimed "doom soul" singer Al Spx, also returns to the chart for the first time since last summer, rising to number nine this time around with her debut album I Predict A Graceful Expulsion. Cold Specks was on the Polaris Music Prize "short list" this year, losing out to Feist, the album mixing elements of blues, gospel, and Southern soul. About.com Alternative Music Guide Anthony Carew wrote about the album in his article on the Polaris Music Prize, "as Cold Specks, Spx evokes depression-era blues in her singing, and also in the music's thought and theme. Death lingers throughout I Predict A Graceful Expulsion, Spx both calling for it and looking to beat it away." What the heck, I went ahead and ordered a used copy from a favored online retailer, so we'll see just how bluesy Ms. Spx may be...
Here are this week's Billboard Top Ten blues albums, ranked by sales:
10. Tedeschi Trucks Band - Revelator (Sony Masterworks)
9. Cold Specks - I Predict A Graceful Expulsion (Mute Records)
8. Hugh Laurie - Let Them Talk (Warner Brothers)
7. Robert Cray - Nothin But Love (Provogue Records)
6. Tedeschi Trucks Band - Everybody's Talkin' (Sony Masterworks)
5. Joe Bonamassa - Driving Towards The Daylight (J&R Adventures)
4. Gary Clark, Jr. - The Bright Lights EP (Warner Brothers)
3. Joe Bonamassa - Beacon Theater: Live From New York (J&R Adventures)
2. Bonnie Raitt - Slipstream (Redwing Records)
1. Gary Clark, Jr. - Blak and Blu (Warner Brothers)
Cold Specks photo courtesy Mute Records