“Nothing gets you sharp like playing in front of people. You have no time to think; you just have to be in the moment and perform. I did my 10,000 hours of guitar practice by the time I was 15.”
Clattering drums, soulful horns, some Wurlitzer hum, and then that voice. Barely 30 seconds into Eddie 9V’s cracking new album “Capricorn” you understand where the “9 Volt” nickname came from. Building big cred for his electrifying performances and bluesy first two albums, Eddie’s voice conjures the honey of Al Green and the bristle of Wilson Pickett while his deft guitarwork slides & glides from Mike Bloomfield and Otis Rush to Albert Collins and Derek Trucks. Born and raised outside of Atlanta, Eddie – aka Brooks Mason Kelly – has been a sponge for blues, soul and r&b tradition since he strummed his first guitar at age 6. Through his teen years, he ditched school to play his fingers bloody in clubs around Georgia – honing a distinctive, vintage-modern Southern Soul sound.
“Capricorn” takes its name from the hallowed recording studio in Macon, Georgia, where Eddie made it – and where the mojo from sessions by the Allman Brothers, Otis Redding and Percy Sledge still hangs in the air. Gathering an 11-strong group of the South’s best roots musicians, he realized a longtime dream. “There was overwhelming excitement at being in such a legendary studio,” he says. “But we hugged and got right to work. Everyone was joyous, loving, and flat-out playing their asses off.”
The tight collection was produced by Eddie’s brother, Lane Kelly, with whom he wrote the 9 original tunes. In addition to vocals and guitar, Eddie switches off on bass with Lane and/or handles drums on 6 of the tracks. Beyond the punchy opener “Beg, Borrow and Steal” referenced above, some of the many highlights include “Yella Alligator” with its swampy groove and slide guitar, the gospel glow of “Are We Through?”, and a fortified take on Bob Dylan’s “Down Along The Cove.” Great stuff to get, gift and groove for the holidays.
Listen to Eddie 9V's "Beg Borrow and Steal"
Listen to Eddie 9V's "Yella Alligator"