I contemplated opening with a brief history of blues music. However, the roots of the blues oozing from the sound and title of the genre are frankly self-explanatory. The often sullen arrangement of chords encompasses the stories of hard times, the torments of love or wailing memories of solitude are instantly recognisable pioneered by greats like B.B. King, Robert Johnson and Muddy Waters.
In modern times however, female blues artists are still relatively unknown. Looking to be discovered is #blueswoman aka Sahra da Silva. A bonafide ‘born-to-sing-the-blues’ artist I’ve admired this Danish songstress since the start of her journey into the music world.
Raw, and raspy vocals with the captivating, untamed eloquence of Janis Joplin, Sahra da Silva epitomises an artist with a story to tell. For a lady from one of the happiest country in the world, her voice feels aged by hard-lived experiences.
After a debut album release with her band the Jagged Soul, the singer returns as a solo artist—and covers herself in blues from head to toe. And from cover art to the EP’s final note.
The album contains six original cuts and three covers versions. Sahra penmanship of a lovelorn lover are entirely relatable and the delightfully scripted Blues Man, superbly produced by Noah Rosanes, is a gem. However, none are as satisfying as – I Wanna Love You. The song seems to have reverberated out from the walls of a 1960’s ballroom. A slow dance affair, this romantic ballad will transport mature listeners back to the heady first experience of embracing on the dancefloor.
Cover versions are an opportunity to sample the interpretation, reimagining or vocal distinction of an artist and Sahra includes a trio of familiar singles – My Babe (it’s not the strongest on the album), Fever and Bridge over Troubled Water. And it’s the latter where Sahra truly excels. Among a digital library full of alternative versions Sahras’ 5+mins jazzy version stands her in the top tier.
There’s no denying the authenticity of Sahra da Silva as a blues artist whose home is undoubtedly on stage. Within the confines of a studio, this collection has managed to encapsulate a rare and captivating artist. I feel like Sahra is on the cusp of a breakthrough album, and fear COVID put the brakes on a promotional tour this album deserved. As winter approaches and indoor stages remain closed (at the time of writing), you can still enjoy the pleasure of being in a smokey bar with a unique, live singer at home.
Just search for #blueswoman.
Close your eyes, and quieten your mind and listen to Sahra da Silvas’ voice as it vibrates. The mix is a joy. The keys are gentle, the bass should be smooth, and the complete soundstage should surround you. Quality listening.
There's no denying the authenticity of Sahra da Silva as an artist whose home is undoubtedly on the stage. Quality blues listening, you feel like Sahra is on the cusp of a breakthrough album. This is so close.