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music reviewmusic reviewmusic reviewmusic review  out of 4 Music Review: Wetlands

Artist: Tab Benoit
Genre: Blues
Release Date: March 2002

Review by Keith "MuzikMan" Hannaleck
4 stars out of 4

Tab Benoit is an original in every sense of the word. He is a Cajun man born and raised on the blues. Now he performs the music of his ancestors in a most zealous and earnest manner. "Wetlands" is very adventurous and descriptive title for this CD. The region that the man hails from is found in the very depths of his soul, creating a wellspring of emotion that comes pouring out with his snappy guitar playing and gruff vocal delivery. The music is born of the legendary swamplands of Louisiana. The liner notes do a fine job priming you for the ultimate Cajun blues experience. The history of the area and the people that invented the music has a rich and colorful legacy that has lived on through the music of people like Tab Benoit, God bless him. I think all the music that you hear today originated from this genre. Yes, I believe that all music was derived from the roots of the blues, and I know there are plenty of folks out there that would agree with me.

Benoit serves up a smorgasbord of the da blues, and he doesn't hold back a thing. That is the reason this album is without fail entertaining. From the stinging guitar lines of the opener "Fast and Free" to the southern drawl of "Georgia," Benoit gives you the full blues treatment. Every ounce of sweat that drips off his brow is filled with the sweltering heat of the south. It's the kind of sweat that you can taste the salt in, as it burns your skin in the hot summer sun. That kind of feeling and reality is reminiscent of the slaves that toiled in the fields and made this music what it is.

Tab Benoit is the real deal; he plays the blues as they should be, with feeling and moral fiber. This is the best effort of 2002 that I have heard from the Telarc vaults. I am sure there are many more to come.


1. Fast and Free (Benoit) - 3:11
2. Stackolina (Benoit) - 4:08
3. I Got Loaded (Harris) - 4:28
4. Muddy Bottom Blues (Benoit) - 4:22
5. When a Cajun Man Gets the Blues (Benoit) - 4:21
6. Too Sweet for Me (Benoit) - 3:07
7. Down in the Swamp (Benoit) - 4:49 8. These Arms of Mine (Redding) - 4:17
9. Dog Hill (Chavis/Simien) - 3:44
10. Her Mind Is Gone (Byrd) - 3:42
11. Loves Lips (Benoit) - 3:13
12. Let Love Take Control (Benoit) - 5:46
13. Georgia (Osborne) - 7:43


Tab Benoit - Guitar, Vocals, Producer, Mixing
Darryl White - Drums
Brian Stoltz - Guitar, Vocals
Anders Osborne - Guitar, Vocals, Production Assistant
Carl Dufrene-Bass



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