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Nemeth: Show Preview 

Wednesday, Sep 8 2010

There is a great tradition of performers walking the line between blues and soul: Bobby "Blue" Bland, Little Milton, Etta James, and — based on his work in the last three or four years — John Nemeth. A transplant from Boise, Idaho, the Bay Area-based Nemeth has both the harmonica-sizzling savvy of Carey Bell and Kim Wilson and the polished-yet-spirited poise of Otis Redding. Unlike many of his contemporaries, Nemeth is triple-talented; he can play harmonica, sing, and write songs. His last two discs for the local Blind Pig label consist chiefly of tunes that, while they won't win any awards for originality, draw upon classic '60s sounds without succumbing to slipshod retro-ism or (even worse) parody. For him, "tradition" is not something for airtight glass cases in museums — it is something to be reinvented and reinvigorated.

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Mark Keresman

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