Saturday, March 26, 2011

Any Woman’s Blues #7 – Susan Tedeschi

Saturday is upon us—almost before we knew it!—so it’s time for another edition of Any Woman’s Blues.  On Monday as part of the “electric” Monday Morning Blues, I posted a video of Susan Tedeschi playing “Voodoo Woman,” & promised to feature Tedeschi in an upcoming Any Woman’s Blues feature.  As the week progressed, it struck me that there’s no time like the present, so Ms Tedeschi is our featured blues guitar player today.

Susan Tedeschi grew up in the Boston area, & began public performance as a singer at age 6, when she had an understudy role in a Broadway musical.  She began performing in bands in her teens, & attended Berklee College of Music, from which she received a Bachelor of Music degree in performance & composition.

Tedeschi formed the Susan Tedeschi Band in the mid 1990s, & released her first album, Better Days, on Oarfin in 1995.  Her follow-up album, Just Won’t Burn (the title track is today’s second video) was released on Tone Cool in 1998, & this one created some buzz, as it topped out at #2 on the Billboard Blues charts, & was also among the Billboard Top 200 albums for the year.  Tedeschi has since released four more albums—most recently, Back to the River on Verve in late 2008.  This album was nominated for a Grammy as Best Contemporary Blues Album in 2010, which was Tedeschi’s fifth Grammy nomination. 

These days, Tedeschi is devoting her efforts to the Tedeschi Trucks Band, formed with her husband, slide guitar ace Derek Trucks.  Tedeschi has collaborated with Trucks since their 2001 marriage, particularly in the band Soul Stew Revival. 

Tedeschi is a bit unusual in this series on blues guitarists in that, although she had an early start in music as a singer, she didn’t start playing guitar until her 20s.  She has developed well, with a passionate guitar style.  She usually plays either a D’Angelico guitar (see second vid & lead-off pic) or a Fender Telecaster (first vid), tho she occasionally performs on acoustic as well.  Her sound has a heavy rhythm & blues slant, & her bands typically include sax & sometimes Hammond B-3 organ, staples of the R&B sound.

As far as her vocal ability: Wow!  & you can intensify that Wow with either profane or mild modifiers.  Tedeschi is simply a great blues singer, one who can stand up to comparison with any singer in the history of the blues.

This will be the last Saturday edition of Any Woman’s Blues.  Starting on Monday April 4, I’m going to move Any Woman’s Blues to the Monday Morning Blues slot.  The new “Monday Morning Blues/Any Women’s Blues” series will continue to feature women blues guitarists for the foreseeable future. 

Hope you enjoy this great music!

The picture of Susan Tedeschi leading off the post is by Wiki Commons user Xophersmith, & is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported license.


  1. Ah, thanks John! "Mama, He Treats Your Daughter Mean" was one of her signature tunes early in her career, and she definitely made the composer - Ruth Brown - proud; Ruth was the honoree at the first Newport Rhythm & Blues Festival in 1993 and Susan sang it to/for her.

  2. Hi Roy: Glad you liked this! Yes, "Mama, He Treats Your Daughter Mean" was also on the 98 Just Won't Burn release, & Tedeschi's performances & recordings of that song would make any composer proud!


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