In 2014, Peach Reasoner gave a concert in Venice that the LA Beat wrote about. Two years later, Peach has brought the same energy and purity of voice to a new live CD, Peach and the Almost Blues Band: A Night in Copenhagen. Voted the Blues Artist of the Year by the L.A. Music Awards, along with receiving other music awards, Peach is known for her dynamic, powerful singing and excellent guitar work. Peach recently sat down with The Los Angeles Beat to discuss the album, her experiences in Denmark and some of the songs.
Q: How did the audiences in Copenhagen treat you? Did they love your music?
A: I’ve been very well received in Denmark from the onset. It probably helped initially that I’m an American guitar-slinging blues woman (because there are few of us out there). But the Danes just like good music! So if the band rocks, the audiences will love you. It’s pretty simple.
Q: You used Danish musicians, how did that come about?
A: I first went to Denmark in 2008 to meet with Annette Hagan Brandt who wanted to be my manager in Europe. I had a little ballad that I wanted to record and she introduced me to a guitarist named Aske Jacoby. He put together an ensemble of musicians to record my song.
After the recording, I kept meeting more musicians and drinking more and more coffee. Eventually, I knew quite a few musicians in Copenhagen and was pretty fired up from all the great coffee, and the rest is history – ongoing history.
In 2014 I was asked to join the Almost Blues Band (see www.AlmostBluesBand.dk). We made a live recording in 2016, “A Night in Copenhagen” and I think it captured the cozy (hygge) feeling from Café Bartof in Copenhagen, Denmark on a night in February of 2016.
Q: Same As I’m Over You really showcases your singing talents. Tell me about that song.
Same As I’m Over You was written by my former band mate, Paulie Cerra. We are all so proud of Paulie who is now the sax man in Joe Bonamassa’s band. I love slow 12/8 blues songs and I was particularly attracted to the lyrics in Paulie’s song:
“I used to wake up in the morning, with my head all kinda sore, used to wake up in the morning, with my clothes, all over the floor.”
“In my younger days, I was so cool. Drinking whisky and acting a fool. Staying out all night and into the day. Sometimes I wonder: how I ever found my way.”
And I love the irony that in the song, all the while, I am saying over and over again, “I don’t do that anymore” and “I’m over you”.
I love the song. It’s delicious good fun to me. Thank you Paulie!
Q: Tell me about Come Up and See Me Sometime. That song is a great tune for you, saucy and a perfect blues tune. What is it about “spicy” tunes that you like?
A: Come Up and See Me Sometime was written by my friends Danny Timms and Jodi Siegel. I like it because it reminds me of where I grew up in Anderson, Indiana. In an era where we just “dropped in” on friends, and hung out.
“There’s a little place at the edge of town, where we can go if you really wanna shake it down. And the door is always open, so if you’re driving by, come up and see me sometime!”
Of course it’s also a not-so-vague reference to the movie icon Mae West’s saying, “come up and see me sometime”. And an unveiled sexual reference – I say, what could be better than these lyrics?
Q: What is it about the blues that gets to you?
A: I like to play and sing “FULL TILT”…..all out and to exhaustion!
I find the feeling of playing exhilarating. I especially like getting so into the song that I’m not “thinking” but only “feeling” and transported for that moment, in time, (for lack of words here) “into the sky”.
It’s kind of like sex, yet more complicated! Because you have an audience, band members, the club owner, the booking agent, the publicity man, etc. etc.
But once you are on the stage it’s just about the music.
Q: Thank you, Peach!
The CD begins with Tonight I’ll Be Stayin’ Here With You, a slow, blues tinged-song with elements of country and Southern rock. Peach’s voice carries the tune, an ode to one woman’s acquiescence to what she must do. Little by Little features a moving jazz-blues beat and a mix of organ, piano and guitar worthy of the great Stax Memphis Soul albums. Love Itis, a soul tune made into a huge hit by the J. Geils Band, rocks along with Peach’s voice belting it out like she owns the tune. This is one of those tunes that it is impossible not to move or dance to.
Come Up and See Me Some Time has all the elements of a catchy tune—-great title, slightly risque lyrics, an infectious beat and Peach’s sizzling vocals. Same as I’m Over You is a straight ahead blues tune, and Peach sounds great on this song. The song itself is an excellent choice, a new song but one that would have been worthy of a place in Etta James’, Bessie Smith’s or Billie Holiday’s repertoire. Ain’t Got No Money finishes the album with a rocking tune, the piano featured along with Peach’s vocals, belting out the tune as good as any rocker can.
With A Night in Copenhagen, Peach brings the energy of her live shows in a nice, simple package. The CD shows why she really needs to be experienced live. Her melding of straight-ahead blues with rock and soul is a mix that goes back to the roots of American music. In A Night in Copenhagen, Peach shows how European audiences can enjoy this truest form of American music.