From Olivia Newton-John through to The White Stripes and hammer-licker Miley Cyrus, Dolly Parton’s Jolene has been adapted for different musical persuasions countless times. Yet Jo Harman and the Southern Soul Connection have still managed to give the song a fresh charm and beauty.
But what would you expect from one of modern blues’ brightest upstarts? She leads this loving collaboration of top quality bluesmen through some truly gorgeous songs that are, thanks in part to Steve Watts’ wonderful Fender Rhodes-playing, as smooth as a fine whisky. Brent Carter’s warming tenor provides the perfect contrast to Harman’s eloquent falsetto on Loving Arms, while their take on John Lennon’s Jealous Guy is slower and sassier. Scott McKeon’s soulful licks help broaden the dimensional qualities of the song too. In short, this is blues in true, raw and awe-inspiring fashion.