A few days before Damon Fowler's new, nationally released CD, Sugar Shack, came out on Jan. 27, I sat with him in the CL studio for a lengthy conversation. The 29-year-old Tampa native was enthusiastic, but realistic, about the CD, released on the San Francisco blues label Blind Pig. He also knows he has some stereotypes to overcome. Here's a portion of the feature story that will run in next week's issue and be up online soon:
Damon Fowler knows what youre thinking, some of you at least:
Here comes another fresh-faced, guitar-slingin white boy with a new album out on a national blues label, further populating the already crowded ranks of guitar-slingin white boys who play real fast and real long and cant sing worth a damn but think of themselves as real bluesmen.
Damon Fowler doesnt blame you for thinking this, but he wants you to know: Its not true.
It is a trap a white boy with a guitar, Fowler says. Its terrible for me. I mean, I like some of those blues hotshot guys like Stevie Ray Vaughan, but there was only one Stevie Ray Vaughan, and now you got all these guys in ponchos boot-scootin and playing [Stratoscasters] and its all so contrived. Its whats wrong with the blues that and harmonica players in purple suits who try to sing like something theyre not.
No, really, Damon, dont hold back.
A lot of times that shits just an excuse for playing guitar. Put together a little song like Im lonely for my baby, Im lonely for my baby, oh yeah. She dont come to see me and then you wail [on guitar] for 10 minutes.
Its not a blues record.
Thats how Fowler, 29, succinctly describes Sugar Shack.
Click here for the full story, along with video and audio.
Damon Fowler's CD Release show is tonight at Skipper's Smokehouse, 8 p.m., presented by WMNF. $10 advance, $15 at the door.