Eddie Cotton - One at a Time

By Lady K
February 2016

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Eddie Cotton

One at a Time

DeChamp Records, LLC, 2015

By Lady K

BBS Reviewer

Eddie Cotton, out of Mississippi, is the son of a preacher so he naturally grew up singing and playing gospel music. Now Eddie does a little preaching of his own – preaching blues music, with a healthy dose of soul and some funk. Blues and soul and funk turned out to be a winning combination for the Cotton band at the 2015 International Blues Challenge in Memphis.

Eddie Cotton (guitars, vocals, songwriter); J.J. Thames, John Genous (background vocals); Myron Bennett (bass, background vocals); Samuel Scott Jr. (drums); Grady Champion (harp); Carlos Russell (harp, background vocals); James “Hotdog” Lewis (keyboards); Kimble Funchess (trumpet); Jessie Primer III (tenor sax) and Mike Weidick (trombone).

Lady K loves the mid-tempo title track, “One at a Time”. It’s a super-bluesy tune highlighted with Eddie’s whiney slide guitar and lyrics reminding all that, regrettably, there’s only one of him, so he can only love one at a time: ‘If I could I would plant myself and grow a lot of me.’ The up-tempo rocker, “Be Careful”, warns about taking things for granted, ‘mistakes can bring you to your knees’. Another of Lady K’s favorite tracks is the mid-tempo “My Money” (with Grady Champion on harp). It’s dancing, hip-swinging blues – even people hanging out at the bar aren’t going to be standing still. The slow-tempo “War is Over” is the last track on “One at a Time”, and another Lady K fave, with its long, terrific instrumental opening.

“Better Deal” is a slow, seductively bluesy track with spell-binding guitar. “Better Deal” is also a sad song: ‘even though you’re my wife, the love of my life, it’s plain to see the back-door man is getting a better deal’. The mid-tempo “Dead End Street”, adds a little humor to tales of young love: ‘she showed me that life can be so sweet on the back seat of a car on a dark, dead-end street’.

“Fair Weather Lover” is NOT a weather report. You’ll want to find someone to dance slow with. ‘You put me down when you thought I spent my last dime / I never want another / I need a lot of things, but you can keep that fair weather lover.’ A great instrumental run finishes this track. There’s some soul-satisfying rockin’ organ in the up-tempo “Filling Me with Pleasure”: ‘I’d like to know you better / filling me with pleasure right now / every time you’re near me I feel like a helpless child.’

When Lady K saw “Je Ne Sais Quoi” as the title of a track, she wondered how that would work out. The pronunciation of the French phrase didn’t seem that it could ‘work’ with many blues tempos. Cotton made it sort of work; French teachers won’t be impressed, but what the hell, he tried. Listeners will get the point, and Cotton’s guitar will win over any perfectionists; he has the flair. “Ego at Your Door” is heavy on soul – the back-up vocals sound like the Four Tops; it’s hard not to picture guys dressed alike singing and doing a dance routine, when listening to this track.

The up-tempo “Mississippi’ could be a spelling lesson because the lyrics of the chorus spell Mississippi!!! Lady K remembers Sister Mary Matthews teaching state names and spelling in the 2nd grade. And, I believe there was even a jump-rope game based on the spelling of Mississippi. This song is a much funkier way to learn to spell the state name.

Lady K thoroughly enjoyed her introduction to Eddie Cotton and his band.


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