September 19, 2022

Now the name Geoff Muldaur may not be known by too many regular browsers of this website, but he is a genuine elder stateman of the music scene being a quality purveyor of blues and all things Americana. He was born in the United States in 1943 and is a singer, guitarist and composer with a host of recordings to his name either as a solo artist or as a member of the Jim Kweskin Jug Band and Paul Butterfield’s Better Days as well as guest musician to the likes of Gerry Garcia, Bobby Charles and Loudon Wainwright III amongst many others and I imagine that his telephone contains direct lines to the great and good of the music industry. If you are rated by Bonnie Raitt as one of her favourite singers, admired by John Cale and Richard Thompson says of you ‘There are only three white blues singers – Geoff Muldaur is at least two of them’ then you can say that your career has been spectacular.

Muldaur’s latest release is something special being available at a 2LP box set, 2CD book and 2CD Gatefold for 70-minutes of very fine Americana. Strangely, Muldaur recorded the album in Holland utilising some of the best jazz and classical musicians from that country to make an atmospheric and nostalgia inducing slab of American folk and jazz influenced blues. Muldaur serves up for us a delicious selection of old-time songs being odes to Jelly Roll Morton and Duke Ellington with several compositions being written around the words of Tennessee Williams as well as several Muldaur penned tunes. The music is personal to Muldaur and inspired by events in his family history with his delivery being delicious and so redolent of years gone by when life was so much simpler. His choice of musicians is inspirational as they provide the perfect accompaniment to the tales of wonder that Muldaur spins for us in the way that only he can do.

This is music to listen to when you are out on the porch in the early evening and if you haven’t got a porch then use your imagination to revel in a wonderful album that is so filled with all things America that it’s a surprise that the Stars and Stripes are not stamped all over the cover! Check out the near 20-minute Octet in Three Movements that makes up the bulk of CD2 and just wonder at the genius of the man.

His Last Letter is a perfect way to relax and indulge in a luxurious country folk blues album that is full to the brim with delights that keep on giving and you can almost hear Woodie Guthrie looking down on us and sighing in delight and contentment.

His Last Letter

Disc 1

  1. Black Horse Blues (2:56)
  2. Betcha I Getcha (3:07)
  3. Michigan Water Blues (3:04)
  4. Lady of the Lavender Mist (3:04)
  5. The Whale Has Swallowed Me (3:30)
  6. Boll Weevil Holler (4:14)
  7. The Jitterbug Waltz (3:04)
  8. Gee Baby, Ain’t I Good to You? (3:51)
  9. Gold Tooth Blues (2:51)
  10. Prairie Lullaby (5:39)

Disc 2

  1. Mistreated Mama (2:42)
  2. Come All You Fair and Tender Ladies (4:21)
  3. The Frog (0:26)
  4. My Little One (3:36)
  5. Heavenly Grass (3:04)
  6. Octet in Three Movements – Overture (4:54)
  7. His Las Letter (9:02)
  8. Homage (6:01)