review Mama & Friends from the UK

this one just came in:

Mama & Friends — Mama’s Bag / Bone Union Records
Well here’s a turn-up for the books. A group of Turkish musicians whose music reflects the early roots of the blues and gospel music, as with a high degree of authenticity, they bring to life the music of Robert Johnson, Jesse Fuller, Leadbelly and Bessie Smith and others. The musicians in question are Çağlayan Örge (banjo- guitar), Suna Suner (vocal, tambourine) and Sarp Keskiner (vocal, electric lead and slide guitar, kazoo, harmonica, tambourine, snare & a cymbal). The band was formed in 1996 and these recordings were made in 1997 at various live gigs in Turkey, recorded on a cassette recorder by in-house sound. But don’t let that put you off—this is a revivalist band par excellence! Take a listen to ‘This Little Light of Mine’, the old spiritual. It comes with vocals that sound like they emanate from a church in rural Mississippi and with a slide guitar that constantly reminds me of the very best ‘sacred steel’ work by the likes of Sonny Tredway, Willy Eason or Aubrey Ghent. These folks have done their homework! This is an album that is replete with authenticity taking some old favourites like ‘CC Rider’, ‘Trouble In Mind’ and ‘Careless Love’ and presenting them with a verve and panache that takes them to a new place. I really like this one, it has a nice feel about it and a certain je ne sais quoi which puts it in a different place than many of the revivalist groups I hear.

new single Bone Union Records

today we released

BUR 1108 – The Shrimps – So Worried

Founded by Sarp Keskiner (vocal, guitar) and Bora Çeliker (vocal, guitar) in 2000, in order to present their versatile attempt to blend New Orleans grooves with 50’s and 60’s Latin American music and post-war Chicago blues; The Shrimps was one of a kind for sure in the Turkish blues community, by including the best musicians of the “cover” era. Thus, defined as a super-group by the audience as soon as it was massively promoted, the band had the ability to swiftly pitch around many genres. They were based in Ankara, which was the capital of Turkish blues scene, standing as an anti-thesis against to SRV wannabes but treating the scene with a punk-ish attitude. The band did not last after their debut performance but left this performance behind, which was recorded live in January 2000. “So Worried” is an original track suggesting us as if Wolf recorded it with Omar Khorshid in Cairo.

  • Sarp Keskiner: vocals, guitar
  • Bora Çeliker: guitar, harmonica
  • Burak Güngörmüş: bass
  • Alp Esin: bongos
  • Yusuf Tunceli: drums

The single is released digital and available on all the download and streaming platforms.

Bone Union Records was founded as a sub label from Black and Tan Records in June 2020 together by Sarp Keskiner (TR). The label aims to document a neglected musical scene in Turkey not just by releasing archival material from mid-90’s to this date; but also keen on releasing brand new material from Turkish artists. Though the scope mainly consist rare recordings of local traditional blues, urban blues and gospel acts, the material varies wildly by inclusion of folk, funk, dub, noise and experimental releases, that goes way beyond the borders of conventional blues.

new single ElectroBluesSociety + Boo Boo Davis

today we released

Track number 7 from the ‘transatlantic quarantaine sessions”. This time it is an instrumental

From 1998 to 2019 Boo Boo Davis used to tour in Europe several times each year and a lot of music was written and recorded during these tours.  The worldwide Covid pandemic put that on hold . However with the help of the internet and mutual friend Chris Brown in St Louis, the guys from ElectroBluesSociety (Netherlands) and Boo Boo started to exchange idea’s and demo’s. The result of these ‘sessions’ is released as a string of single tracks and they are available on all the stream and download platforms.

Covid can stop live shows for a while but it can not stop the creation of new music.

review Mama & Friends from Germany

Haben die Türken den Blues? Jedenfalls Caglayan Örge, Suna Suner und Sarp Keskiner haben ihn. Er schlummerte über 20 Jahre auf einer Kassette. Man kann von einer fabelhaften Entdeckung sprechen, die dem Vergessen entrissen wurde und nun auf Digitalplattformen verfügbar ist. Als Mama & Friends zeigen die drei auf „Mama’s Bag“ (Bone Union Records) wie extrem tief sie in Delta-Blues und Gospel eingestiegen sind.

review Boo Davis + ElectroBluesSociety

This short review was published July 5:

Brick by brick, the ElectroBluesSociety (Jan Mittendorp + Jasper Mortier) and Boo Boo Davis have been putting together what is turning out to be a pretty solid collection of electro-blues tunes inspired by quarantine. The latest product from the Netherlands-East St. Louis connection is a number called “What’s Going On.”

This isn’t the Marvin Gaye classic, but bluesman Boo Boo Davis crafted his own pleading for the hard truth. Constructed on top of an acoustic bass riff, the ElectroBluesSociety flesh out a brawny groove with Davis’ bellowing voice and the EBS adding haunting background touches that accentuate, not dominate.

new release Bone Union Records

today we released on Bone Union Records

BUR 1107 – Mama & Friends – Mama’s Bag

Founded by luthier – finger picking master Çağlayan Örge (banjo-guitar), Suna Suner (vocal, tambourine) and Sarp Keskiner (vocal, electric lead and slide guitar, kazoo, harmonica, tambourine, snare & a cymbal) in 1996; MAMA & FRIENDS is known as “the ever first combo in Turkey, based on pre-war blues styles, gospels and spirituals.” This album presents an unreleased bundle of materials taken from the live sessions of the trio, recorded directly to a cassette recorder by in house sound engineer Kubilay Gürol, between June and August 1997, at Eylül Müzik Kulübü.1 Gospels and spirituals performed here are also known as secondary examples, ever recorded in Turkey. Thus, enjoy this rare audio documentary; featuring covers of Robert Johnson, Jesse Fuller, Leadbelly and Bessie Smith.3 Other than displaying a naïve authenticity; “Mama’s Bag” captures a historical time frame of local blues scene in Turkey, when any event representing those styles was able to pull together hundreds of people, enjoying the diversity of the blues inventory.

Sarp Keskiner: guitar
Suna Suner: vocal
Çağlayan Örge: banjo-guitar

The album is released digital and available on all the download and streaming platforms.

new single ElectroBluesSociety

Today we released

B&T 981 – What’s Going On – ElectroBluesSociety feat Boo Boo Davis

This is the sixth single release from the ‘transatlantic quarantaine sessions” that ElectroBluesSociety did with Boo Boo Davis

Between 1998 and 2020 Boo Boo has been touring Europe at least a few times each year and most of his music was written and recorded during those tours.  Covid put that ‘tradition’ on hold . But with the help of the internet and Chris Brown in St Louis, the guys from ElectroBluesSociety (Netherlands) together with Boo Boo started to write and record new songs. So far we have released six songs but there is a lot more in the pipeline. 

The new single is released digital and available on all the download and streaming platforms.