A few weeks ago, we told you about Chicago bluesman Omar Coleman’s debut recording on Delmark Records, Born & Raised. Jimmy Burns’ latest CD marks the singer/guitarist’s fifth project on that same label – with one additional on Velrone Records – since he started recording albums back in 1996, some three decades after cutting his first singles, but hearing It Ain’t Right, it’s easy to see where guys like Coleman have found some of their inspiration.
The younger brother of the late Detroit bluesman Eddie Burns (who played with John Lee Hooker as well as on his own), Jimmy is part Albert King, part Otis Clay or Johnny Rawls, bringing an impressive and entertaining mix of blues and soul originals and covers, from the funky, shuffling opener “Big Money Problem” and uptempo grooves of “Long as You’re Mine”, to the B.B. King-like guitar of a gritty “Hard Hearted Woman” and the slow, bluesy “I Know You Hear Me Calling”, to the swaying soul of “Will I Ever Find Somebody?”, old-time horn- and backing vocals-accompanied “Crazy Crazy Crazy”, and boogie-woogie “Rock Awhile”.
Along with that you’ll find some terrific – and often unique – takes on songs like “Stand By Me”, “Messin’ With the Kid”, the traditional gospel classic “Wade in the Water”, and of course, “It Ain’t Right”, with Burns backed by a crack group of musicians that include Greg McDaniel on bass and Sumito “Ariyo” Ariyoshi (Billy Branch & the Sons of Blues) on piano, along with Roosevelt Purifoy on organ for a handful of songs.
Indeed, the only thing that ain’t right here is that Burns isn’t already a whole lot more widely known and respected outside of Chicago, but hopefully that will change once a few more people hear this latest offering from the Delta-born musician.