Review: Barb Jungr – Stockport To Memphis

Posted on: Wednesday, Dec 5, 2012

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Barb Jungr – Stockport To Memphis

(Naim Jazz)

A title like that is of course tailor-made for “Blues In The North West”! Barb Jungr is a song stylist, one of those rare singers who can tackle soul, rock, jazz, pop, and the blues – as she does here. There are some songs too that are so beautiful that it would be difficult not to make them worth hearing – Sam Cooke’s iconic ‘Change Is Gonna Come’ is definitely one of these, so when Barb performs it, she takes it to the highest heights, with a minimalist treatment that makes it “once heard, never forgotten”.

It is the kind of song she heard growing up in Stockport, as she reveals on the original title track, an excellent slab of 60s r&b with wailing harp adding to the retro feel. She also conjures up that era with a very fine cover of Them’s (S)He’s Not There’. Tom Waits’ ‘Way Down In The Hole’ is also something of a classic, here given a slightly jazzy and spooky treatment, and throwing in the likes of Hank Williams, Joni Mitchell, Bob Dylan and Neil Young should ensure a justifiably wide audience for this classy set.

Norman Darwen

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