Ben Sures combines the blues with unusual lyrics and lots of influences


Ben Sures is lovably quirky, but he shows he is also a mighty fine bluesman on his new CD  ‘Son of Trouble.’
 it is unusual to see this bluesy side of him as his previous CDs have been more along the lines of world music or standard singer-songwriter music with those lovably unusual lyrics. The blues fits him like a well tailored suit, though given how strange the lyrics are the suit would have to be fluorescent green with purple polka dots.

He comes into his own as a bluesman and it doesn’t hurt that he has Paul Reddick on board to add hot harp solos right from the beginning of ‘Dig That Thing.’Click here to hear Ben Sures

 It is not all  about the blues though. ‘Son of Trouble’ features a touch of reggae, a little bit of jazz and even some rockabilly/ Sun Studios country music.

‘Eat, Drink and Make Babies, is definitely my favourite song which combines his quirky sense of humour with the great blues groove thanks to Ken Whiteley’s piano groove.

“I want to eat, drink, and make babies, and maybe when it’s over take a nap,’ Sures deadpans, which summarizes his irreverent attitude towards lyrics.

 In a similar vein Sures sings ‘Love Will Kick your Ass’ also features some cool Paul Reddick harp solos and very tasteful guitar solo.
 When he’s not being quirky, he focuses on women past and present like on the slower blues ‘Pamela, Pamela’ and on the introspective, nostalgic ‘Where Are They Now.’ He shows off how tastefully he can play on ‘Pamela, Pamela.’ Where Are they Now’ has a cool acoustic fingerpicked guitar lick that comes straight out of  the Chet Atkins’ playbook, with just a touch of Caribbean melody.

He also shows how well he can play on the cool, ’60s style instrumental ‘Big Blue Box.’
He goes country/rockabilly on another unusual song ‘Saggy, Baggy Faces.’ which could be an unusual outtake from a 1950’s Sun Studios sessions
 He makes his rambling stream of consciousness rhyme every time. Some of the rhymes on songs like ‘I Could Be Your Man’ are just off the wall  — ‘I’m a  troubadour with a pompadour’ or I’m Arnold Schwarzenegger with a calculator, a relationship terminator’ and there is something about Darth Vader in there too.

 They don’t make any sense at all, but they Sures are fun. He gets serious on a couple tracks like the tender French ballad ‘Je Chanterai Pour Toi’ and on a solid cover of Blind Lemon Jefferson blues classic ‘See that My Grave is Kept Clean.’ He begins it a cappella, with just a single drum and is later joined by bass, cascading cymbal crash and then guitar right out of the Delta.
 ‘La Luna En Tu Mirada’ opens with some sinister sounding saw playing, followed by Sures crooning in Spanish.
He flirts with reggae and gets political on ‘The 99’  as he sings ‘Occupy my shoes  and see how I feel,’ but fits in a line about about Wayne Gretzky as well.

 He has an appealing, real, earnest, tender voice that comes across as a weirder Paul Simon.

— By Richard Amery, L.A. Beat Editor
CD: Son of Trouble
Artist: Ben Sures
Genre: Blues