Review of “Tell It Like It Is” | March-April 2011
Written by: Tom Hyslop
Spacious arrangements of bluesy songs characterize Tell It Like It Is, suiting the sultry voice of Deb Callahan well. The Philadelphia singer is particularly fine on the soulful “Long Suffering Woman” and turns in equally superb performances on the rocking “Gonna Get There”, the swampy “I got it bad” and the old time jazz of “Sweet Words.” She over reaches on the lone cover (Dylan’s Cold Irons Bound” doesn’t work) but”In My Bones”, “Old Ways” and “I Got It Bad” are fine ringers for “real” blues. Jason Crosby’s gospelized piano and organ turn “I Fell The Spirit” into a revivial tent-wrecker and the discs high point, and Allen James is MVP for his clean guitar work across the CD.