Saturday To-Do: CeDell Davis and friends | Rock Candy

Friday, October 19, 2012

Saturday To-Do: CeDell Davis and friends

Posted By on Fri, Oct 19, 2012 at 7:46 AM

CeDell Davis plays at Stickyz Saturday.
  • CeDell Davis plays at Stickyz Saturday.

9 p.m. Stickyz. $20.

The Delta blues don't get much grittier, rawer or realer than that of Pine Bluff's CeDell Davis. Many Times readers will be familiar with Davis's music and story, but for the uninitiated, the man is a musical legend not on account of some dusty archival recordings or impossible-to-find 78s, but rather for his many years of live playing and for records released within the last couple decades.

His "Feel Like Doing Something Wrong" was produced by the widely respected writer, scholar, musician and native Arkansan Robert Palmer. Davis was afflicted with polio as a youngster, so he had to relearn how to play the guitar, and Lord, it is a sound to behold. He flipped it over and played left-handed style, using his right hand to fret the strings with a butter knife, which results in a "welter of metal-stress harmonic transients and a singular tonal plasticity," according to Palmer. I couldn't describe the sound any better.

This show will be recorded and filmed for a forthcoming live album and documentary, and includes a grip of musicians who played on Davis's '02 album "When Lightning Struck the Pine." The opening acts are Seattle super group Walking Papers (also playing Friday at Reno's in Argenta), which includes Jeff Angell, Barrett Martin, Duff McKagan and Ben Anderson, and Peter Buck's new solo band. Davis will perform with an array of these folks, as well as Joe Cripps, Scott McCaughey and others. The Tom Houston Jones Band closes it out. This is not one to skip, folks.

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