You wouldn't know it from suffering through the singer-songwriters who plague subway stops and opening slots from coast to coast, but they wouldn't exist without the blues. That said, there's nothing duller than a Tom Waits cultist with a steam-punk tattoo and the word "Reverend" in front of his name. Ohio native and now Nashville-based songwriter Patrick Sweany isn't the second coming of anything. He's simply a dedicated musician who has absorbed the feel and the form of celebrated blues-based Southern masters such as Joe South or underappreciated ones such as Kevin Gordon. On the just-released That Old Southern Drag, Sweany's voice can be as wizened as a dust bowl or as warm as a two-inch analog tape. His sound and songs rarely fail to capture the muscular drive of both early rock & roll and back-to-the-jukes blues.
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