C.W. STONEKING

There are many strands to C.W. Stoneking’s music, he is often presented as a ‘blues artist,’ but the term disguises what makes his music special. A 1920s pre-war blues sound is key, with equal helpings of New Orleans jazz, jug band music, hokum, country and calypso, and he’s lately brought in elements of jump jive, early rock’n’roll and gospel. After charming audiences with acoustic guitars, national resonators, banjos and a band laden with brass on his first two albums, he dropped all of that to go electric with his latest album Gon’ Boogaloo (2014), which was all about his Fender Jazzmaster and doo-wop backing vocals. Not that he’s ditched his acoustic; his most recent tour was a solo affair: just him and his 1937 Epiphone Deluxe. His songs are irreverent and fantastical; his albums are full of humorous tales of talking animals, hoodoo gone wrong and a myriad of characters in unfortunate situations in locations from jail to the jungle to heaven itself.