Ironing Board Sam: Super Spirit

The 75-year-old bluesman’s spirited return.

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Born Sammie Moore in Rock Hill, Carolina in 1939, eccentric blues and soul keyboardist Ironing Board Sam was named after his habit of strapping his instrument to an ironing board when playing.

His career commenced in the late 50s, but recordings were sporadic and his debut album wasn’t issued until 1996. On Super Spirit, recorded at producer Bruce Watson’s Dial Back Sound studio in Mississippi, he is ably backed by co-producer and guitarist Jimbo Mathus and bassist Stu Cole, both of Squirrel Nut Zippers, and ex-Screaming Trees drummer Barrett Martin. Songs range stylistically from the funky soul of opener Baby You Got It to a punk-blues cover of The Gories’ garage-rocker I Can’t Take It, and from* I’m Gone*, reminiscent of Allen Toussaint’s New Orleans R&B, to psychedelic message song Super Spirit. Sam’s impressive, warm vocals and electric keyboards provide cohesion to this eclectic album.