1. The Dance
2. Midnight Morgan
3. Summer Lovin' Blues
4. The Sinking Sun
5. Seventeen Men
1. Devil's Got The Blues
2. High and Dry
3. Blues On The Ceiling
4. Drunkard's Blues
5. Dragnet For Jesus
MEET MANDY MARYLANE
From the opening line of the Lonnie Johnson classic “Devil’s Got the Blues,” to the closing strains of Sister Wynona Carr’s “Dragnet for Jesus,” the music packs a gut-punch on Mandy Marylane’s new EP, Blues Shack. That’s the power of the blues.
Produced by Fernando Perdomo, Blues Shack puts Marylane’s deep alto singing voice front and center. That voice, taut with tremolo, is a force with which to be reckoned – on Fred Neil’s shuffling “Blues on the Ceiling” and Marty Brown’s tearful country blues “High and Dry,” it soars with the passionate ache of Patsy Cline and the soul-stirring emotion of blues legends like Odetta and Rosetta Tharpe. “I grew up on country music, country blues and bluegrass,” she explains. “So, I think I have a lot of influences from singers like Johnny Cash, and Patsy Cline.” Marylane’s self-titled debut EP on Y&T Music showcased not only her powerful vocals but her songwriting – along with her impressive classical guitar chops.
“I started out as just a singer, before the guitar,” she says. “Singing was my first thing – I’d sing while other people played. But over time, I wanted more control, and that’s kind of why I learned to play guitar and to accompany myself. However, for this particular record, I let myself be just the singer, just that part of the project and I could not have been happier with the results!”
A big part of that surprise was Perdomo, who brought Marylane into The Shack North Recording Studios in Hialeah, Florida, along with a file cabinet full of stirring musical ideas. “It was,” Marylane enthuses, “such a pleasure working with Fernando. The chemistry that we had musically was like something I had never experienced before: Somebody so well-versed in everything that they do, every instrument he plays … and the way we worked together was seamless. It was really a magical experience, making this record with him.”
The Shack North, to everyone’s surprise, contributed considerable ambiance to the sessions. “We had general ideas for how we wanted it to sound, but the studio turned out to be very special. It had this real circus-y vibe, with clown masks everywhere. It looked like you were in this vintage carnival. And I think Fernando was feeling that when he was doing the instrumentation. He brought that to the songs – they all have something kinda weird, kinda wacky about them.”
Making Blues Shack wasn’t just a thrill for Mandy Marylane – it opened her eyes (and her ears) to new possibilities.” The next thing that I do will definitely have my guitar playing on it – and other musicians as well,” she explains. “I want to open up to having a bigger sound.