The key to fully appreciating bluesman extraordinaire Robert Connelly Farr’s guitar stylings and music is to recognize where he comes from geographically and his musical ancestors and influences.
Farr was born and raised in Mississippi and after leaving the USA to live in Canada, he connected with his home region’s music on a trip back to the states when he came under the tutelage of the blues guitarist Jimmy “Duck” Holmes, who is himself a disciple of Skip James, one of the originators of the Bentonia School of blues. Bentonia blues, as it is called, gets its name from the small town of Bentonia, Mississippi where James was from and is best described by writers Bob L. Eagle and Eric S. Le Blanc in their book Blues: A Regional Experience as “a style of guitar-playing that features a shared repertoire of songs, guitar tunings and chord-voicings with a distinctively minor tonality not found in other styles of blues music.”
As audible as this type of blues is in Farr’s music, you can also hear the music of fellow bluesmen R.L. Boyce, R.L. Burnside, and Junior Kimbrough as well as elements of Southern rock and outlaw country music to boot.
They all find a place in Farr’s mesmerizing and contemplative offerings and on his latest album Country Supper, the follow up to his sizzling Dirty South Blues from 2019, Farr gives the potential listener a sprawling and savory collection of sixteen tracks that displays not only his versatility and talent as a songwriter and guitar player but also his deftness in melding his musical influences to create a sound of his own.
On this atmospheric, impressionistic, and smoldering album where you can practically feel the Mississippi heat and humidity through your speakers, particular songs of note are the slow-burner “Cypress Grove,” the nasty guitar rocker “Girl In The Holler,” the power blues killer “Cadillac Problems,” the proudly defiant scorcher “I Ain’t Dyin,” the hard and fast living anthem cooker “All Good,” the deeply mournful wailer “Bad, Bad Feeling” and the dirty blues Gospel kicker “I Know I’ve Been Changed.”
Blues as a genre was born out of and has always been about the difficulties of our lives here on this earth and about trying to maintain a tough-minded hope and optimism in the face of the sometimes overbearing and overwhelming realities that we face on a day to day basis.
On Country Supper, Robert Connely Farr once again proves himself worthy of the blues mantra that he has taken upon himself by presenting those timeless blues themes to us with a mouth-watering mixture of blues and rock that leaves us wanting and waiting for more.
Credits:Vocals: Robert Connely Farr, Guitar: Robert Connely Farr, Jon Wood & Ben Yardley, Bass: Tom Hillifer aka #TommyRibs, Drums: Jay Bundy Johnson, Produced by Robert Connely Farr, Tom Hillifer, #JayBundyJohnson & Jon Wood.
with additional production by Liam Noes on ‘Water’s Rising’, ‘Cadillac Problems’, ‘I Ain’t Dying’, ‘Gimme Yo Money’ & “All Good”.
Country Supper from Robert Connely Farr is available on his website.