LADY A'S ~ DOIN FINE:
REVIEWER: Richard Ludmerer ~ MAKING A SCENE MAGAZINE 2018
Anita White a.k.a. Lady A makes her home in the greater Seattle area. She has been a Pacific NW Blues favorite for over a decade and has been called “the hardest workin’ woman in Blues, Soul & Funk”. Her high energy performances showcase her husky but sultry voice. Lady A released her debut recording “BlueZ in the Key of Me” in 2010; and followed up with 2013’s “How Did I Get Here”. She has opened for the late Denise LaSalle, the iconic Little Milton, Dr. John and Shemekia Copeland; and has toured or been on stage with the late Charles Neville, Grammy winner Bobby Rush, Kenny Neal and Sugarray Rayford among others. Her last album, released in 2016, was “Loved, Blessed and Blues”.
Currently The Lady A Band includes musical director, writer and arranger Dexter Allen, guitar and bass; Joey Robinson, piano; and Chris “Rattlesnake” Minter or Joey Robinson, drums. The background vocals are sung by Allen and/or Lady A.
All of the songs lyrics were written by Lady A except one. On the title track she sings “Woke up this mornin’ sunlight in my eyes, smell of coffee, know it’s time to rise…headed down to Jackson Mississippi that’s my 2nd home…hop a flight to Sweden, Cruise to France, singin everywhere I can…45 tryin to turn us one against another…how we get around that, love ya sisters and brothers, no time for negativity…you ask me how I’m doin’, baby I’m lovin life and I’m Doin’ Fine.”
“Tryin To Get Over” features words and music from Paul Richardson. Seattle pianist Richardson, who wrote the song back in the 1970’s, takes the piano solo.
On “The Ride” and again on “Next Time U C Me” Robinson wins the MVP award as he serves triple duty playing, piano, organ and even overdubbing the horns.
“When I was a young girl, didn’t want much a nuthin’, but now I’m a woman, I want everything…try to make a difference, come on let’s Change The World.” Lady A’s gospel inspired vocal will help to straighten things out. The background vocals by Allen and Lady A complete this fabulous production.
On “Roof Over My Head” and again on the beautiful “Glad To Know You” the words and music are by John Oliver III. The later is an absolutely fabulous vocal performance by Lady A.
Play this musical gumbo loud as Lady A serves it up hot. Each of the musicians involved make a significant contribution to making this album her best yet. Repeated listening will only make you love her more.
Lady A - Doin’ Fine
REVIEWER: John Mitchell - Blues Blast Magazine UK ~ September 2018
Lady A is a singer from the Pacific North West who blends blues, soul, funk and gospel. She wrote most of the songs here with assistance from John Oliver III or producer Dexter Allen who plays bass and guitar throughout. Drums are by Christopher ‘Rattlesnake’ Minter or Joey Robinson who also plays piano. Paul Richardson wrote one song on which he also plays the piano solo but otherwise it is just the musicians noted above. The album was recorded at Dexter’s studio in Jackson, MS.
The title track opens the album on an autobiographical note as Lady A tells us all about her musical journey and how she is in a great place in her life, played over a thumping rhythm. There is even time for a brief reference to the 45th President to bring us right up to date! Lady A has a fine voice and it is somewhat surprising to read that her roots are in Seattle rather than the Southern states. “The Ride” has some tough guitar behind Lady A’s lyrics which warn us to “keep the faith in everything you do. You got to trust and believe because life is like a ride”. “Next Time U C Me” sounds somewhat familiar but it’s a winner with a bright soulful tune, probably this reviewer’s pick of the album. “Change The World” has positive lyrics about what each of us can do to help each other set to a classic gospel tune with excellent choral backing vocals by Lady A and Dexter who mange to sound like a full choir! With the ‘churchy’ organ sounds this is a strong track. “Roof Ova My Head” gives thanks to God for looking after us, putting a “roof over my head, clothes on my back, shoes on my feet, I truly am blessed”. In contrast “That Man” is definitely secular as Lady A gets chills thinking about the guy she loves whose call to her work distracts her completely, all played to a grooving soul/Rn’B rhythm.
Some tracks seem rather repetitious: “Throw Down” has some synth horns and handclaps over funk bass and wah-wah but rather outstays its welcome; the closing track “Glad To Know You” starts promisingly with lovely piano but although Lady A sings well the lyrics are again mainly the title repeated, as is the case also on “Tryin’ To Get Over”.
Overall a mixed bag in terms of material but Lady A has a strong voice which delivers all these kinds of songs well.
Reviewer John Mitchell is a blues enthusiast based in the UK who enjoys a wide variety of blues and roots music, especially anything in the 'soul/blues' category. Favorites include contemporary artists such as Curtis Salgado, Tad Robinson, Albert Castiglia and Doug Deming and classic artists including Bobby Bland, Howling Wolf and the three 'Kings'. He gets over to the States as often as he can to see live blues.
Midwest Record Entertainment Reviews, News & Views:
LADY A/Loved, blessed & Blues: Think you're imagining that Malaco/Fame vibe here? Lady A was kicking this out on Jackson, MS so it's not your imagination. A solid, southern soul lady, this is going to take your ears to stops on all those Ace compilations that cover mighty, unreleased sides from those southern companies recorded back in the day. A real deal set throughout, this woman knows form whence she sings. A winner throughout.
830 W. Route 22 #144
Lake Zurich, IL., 60047
CHRIS SPECTOR, Editor and Publisher
Copyright Nov-2016 Midwest Record
PhillyCheeze Blues Blog
By Phillip Smith; Oct. 2, 2016
Self-Released -Loved, Blessed & Blues - Lady A
When the mood hits for a nice blend of blues, funk & soul , it doesn’t get much better than taking in the intoxicating vocal sounds of Seattle songstress Lady A. Her latest album, Loved, Blessed & Stressed is an absolute splendor. White is joined by Dexter Allen (guitar, bass, piano and backing vocals) and Joey Robinson (drums, and keyboard).
One doesn’t have to be in a church house to be taken to church. Title track, “Love, Blessed & Blues” grabs ahold of me and vibrates right to the soul, dousing me in the blues gospel-style. Lady A gets the adrenalin flowing in the high-energy “Honey Hush (Tribute to Elnora)”. Play, listen and then repeat on this dance-friendly treat.
Lady A breaks out the funk George Clinton/Brides of Funkenstein style on “Take Me Back to Seattle”. I love the growly bass-line Allen plops down, and the cool little micro-rhythms Robinson adds on the keys. There’s a sweet Motown feeling imbedded in “Love Calling”, a smooth R&B slow song with beautiful vocals.
Loved Blessed & Blues puts me in my happy place with every listen, leaving me with a huge smile across my face.
Melanie Young- Oct 1, 2016
For vocalist Anita aka Lady A White's latest release, the Seattle native traveled to Mississippi to collaborate with Jackson-based musician and producer Dexter Allen, who also played guitar, bass and piano and provided background vocals. On "Loved, Blessed & Blues", her strong personality and rich contralto vocals combined with his smooth, polished production results in a solid set of contemporary soul blues.
There are several up-tempo, energetic numbers here, such as the title track - Lady A name checks soul-blues icons Denise LaSalle, Bobby Rush, Johnnie Taylor and Al Green, and acknowledges that you an have the blues even when things are going good ("you're loved, you're blessed, just go the blues"). "Honey Hush" is a sassy tribute to her grandmother Elnora. "Tired Too!" answers Allen's song I'm Tired; "Take Me Back to Seattle" is a loving ode to her hometown. The album's highlight is "If You Don't Want it, Don't Waste It" - written by Allen. It's fun, empowering lyrics and catchy melody are radio and dance-floor ready.
The mood turns a little darker on the cautionary "Don't let Your Blues Become a Crime", as Lady A urges listeners that "temporary problems don't need no permanent solution." She shows a softer side on the gentle ballad "Love Calling" and ponders an disturber of her romantic peace on the restless "Trouble on My Mind".
Allen and White (Lady A) sing together on his rousing song "Happy", and their vocals and personalities are well matched; he lays down a sizzling guitar solo as well. The pleading gospel "Somebody Here Needs You Lord" serves as a benediction, drawing the session to a reverent close. Ultimately, Lady A's Loved, Blessed & Blues is just what its title suggests - a fine modern collection reflecting the many emotional shades of blues.
INNOCENT WORDS MAGAZINE & RECORDS
www.innocentwords.com - August 2016 - Rick J. Bowen
Loved, Blessed and Blues
One of the hardest working women of the Northwest music community, Lady A, has released her third full-length album ‘Loved, Blessed and Blues.’ The title is not only the name of the opening track, but a reflection of the ten songs and Lady A’s philosophy on life, as she reflects and testifies to being blessed and loved and to the power of the blues.
The easy shuffling opening track name checks many icons of blues music and tells how the music can lift up your heart. The groove revs up another notch during “Honey Hush (A tribute to Elnora),” a guitar-driven funk with Lady A recanting a tale of life lessons given to her from her grandma.
Some tasty lead guitar and mighty Hammond B3 organ swirl around the gospel blues sermon “Don’t Let Your Blues Become a Crime.” She then delivers sassy advice to the lovelorn, “If You Don’t Want It Don’t Waste It.” The two-beat funk “Tired Too” is the scathing rebuke from a women scorned, while some sweet acoustic sounds lift up the R&B ballad “Love Calling.”
Dexter Allen joins Lady A on the heavy duty Chicago Blues ‘Happy,’ adding his rich baritone vocal barbs and hot lead guitar licks to the standout track. The playful “Take Me back To Seattle” should be adopted by the city’s office of tourism. Lady A then conjures up the full power of gospel music for the album closer, ‘Somebody Here Needs You Lord,’ delivering an altar call with her full-throated alto leading the choir of voices lifted to the heavens.
Lady A is more than just powerhouse vocalist, she is a gifted storyteller who imparts us with wisdom through the parables of the blues.