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Asie Payton was a full-time farmer and part-time bluesman from Holly Ridge, Mississippi, who died of a heart attack at age 60 while driving his tractor. For two years prior to his death in 1997, Payton resisted overtures to record his music. Fortunately, however, he eventually consented to make two demo tapes for Fat Possum Records. Both brief sessions are reproduced on this excellent 10-track CD.
If you're into eccentric Delta blues and don't mind a few contemporary touches, Worried is well worth checking out. Payton was an unschooled musician who played on Saturday nights in a grocery store, so his brand of blues was gritty and countrified, similar to label-mates Junior Kimbrough and R.L. Burnside. Most of the tracks collected here originally featured Payton on vocals and electric guitar with Sam Carr's drums providing the only backing. As with Burnside's Fat Possum release Come On In, the label opted to fatten Payton's sound by adding overdubs and a hop-hop flavor to a couple tracks.
The hip-hop touches are interesting in small doses, and they work best on "I Love You," a funky track that sounds like Medeski, Martin and Wood connecting with Bukka White. "All I Need Is You" is actually a loose and soulful cover of Ivory Joe Hunter's "Since I Met You Baby." Other highlights include a funky remake of Joe Tex's "Skinny Legs," a raw solo performance of Muddy Waters' "Can't Be Satisfied," and a sparer version of Payton's "I Love You."
Worried represents the complete recorded legacy of a backwoods bluesman who shunned potential stardom so he could farm. Too bad we won't hear more from Asie Payton, but at least he left some great music behind. Kudos to Fat Possum for keeping their blues rugged.
I love jazz because with it I found my true voice. I have always sung since I was a very small child in school and church. And there have been many genre that I have enjoyed including spiritual, folk, country, latin, soca and pop
I love jazz because with it I found my true voice. I have always sung since I was a very small child in school and church. And there have been many genre that I have enjoyed including spiritual, folk, country, latin, soca and pop. But nothing has touched my artistic sensiblities like JAZZ! Two years ago I moved to Sarasota, FL where I renewed my focus on my singing career and I was so impressed with the quality, quantity and generousity of talented jazz musicains in the Suncoast area. I soon partnered with piano legend Billy Marcus and his trio with Don Mopsick and Stephen Bucholtz. What a blast working with these guys and having them back me up on my first jaz album, Here's To You... which was just released on October 1st. I can't wait to see where the coming year brings me! Check out syniacarrolljazz.com