We have a new champion on the blues chart for the week ending February 9, 2013! The artistic tag team of blues legend Charlie "Harp Wizard" Musselwhite and veteran roots-rocker Ben "The Slide Master" Harper entered the ring with their Stax Records release Get Up! and proceeded to lay the smackdown on the competition. The collaboration between the two talents vaulted from number fourteen straight into the number one spot in its second week of release, and for good reason - it's a damn good record!
There are a lot of new releases this week (complete list below), with a few heavy-hitters - Anders Osborne, Otis Taylor, Devon Allman - reasonably expected to take position in the Top Ten and inject some fresh blood into a chart that has been dominated by longtime residents for too long. This week's sleeper is the third album from British blues-rock guitarist Bex Marshall, The House of Mercy. An up-and-comer on the thriving U.K. blues scene, Marshall's vocals are described as a cross between Janis Joplin and Bonnie Raitt, but her git-playing is the sort of pure fire & brimstone stuff that stateside audiences have been known to eat up. Marshall is one well worth checking out if the above sentences give your ears a tickle at all.
Here are this week's Billboard Top Ten blues albums, ranked by sales:
10. Dr. John - Locked Down (Nonesuch Records)
9. Gary Clark, Jr. - The Bright Lights EP (Warner Brothers)
8. Beth Hart & Joe Bonamassa - Don't Explain (J&R Adventures)
7. Joe Bonamassa - Driving Towards The Daylight (J&R Adventures)
6. Tedeschi Trucks Band - Everybody's Talkin' (Sony Masterworks)
5. Joe Bonamassa - Beacon Theater: Live From New York (J&R Adventures)
4. Buddy Guy - Live At Legends (Silvertone Records)
3. Bonnie Raitt - Slipstream (Redwing Records)
2. Gary Clark, Jr. - Blak and Blu (Warner Brothers)
1. Charlie Musselwhite & Ben Harper - Get Up! (Stax Records)
New releases: The Allman Brothers Band's Nassau Coliseum 05/01/73 (Allman Brothers Recordings); Anders Osborne's Three Free Amigos (Alligator Records); Arthur "Big Boy" Crudup's Sunny Road (Delmark Records); Bex Marshall's The House of Mercy (House of Mercy Records); Devon Allman's Turquoise (Ruf Records); Elvin Bishop's She Puts Me In The Mood (Blues Boulevard); Otis Taylor's My World Is Gone (Telarc Records)
Photo of Bex Marshall's The House of Mercy courtesy House of Mercy Records