Whether one leans toward the blues, Americana, or music by a garage band, there’s a common bond suggesting a reverence for roots music. Looking back to an earlier template—no matter the genre—proves the point that appreciating what came before can be a stepping-stone for what comes next.
Samantha Fish knows that all too well, and it’s been evidenced in the music she has made during her entire career. While she is well known as a purveyor of blues, having been lauded by such legends as Buddy Guy, the Royal Southern Brotherhood, and Luther Dickinson, her real love is simply raw, scrappy rock and roll. “I grew up on it,” she insists. “Working with Luther on my last album further instilled that spirit in me. It made me realize just how much that basic, unfettered sound means to me, and how well it ties into soul music, R&B, country and so many other forms of music that are essential even today.”
Fish has never been bound by any expectations. Growing up in Kansas City, she switched from drums to guitar at the tender age of fifteen. She spent much of her time in local watering holes listening to visiting blues bands. She caught the attention of Ruf Records. The label subsequently released her album, Girls with Guitars, which found her co-billed with Cassie Taylor and Dani Wilde. That led to her forming her own trio and recording three more albums: Runaway (2011), Black Wind Howlin’ (2013), and Wild Heart (2015). She won as Best New Artist for Runway at the 2012 Blues Music Awards in Memphis, Tennessee. Along the way, she found herself working with other artists such as Jimmy Hall, Devon Allman, and Reese Wynans.
Her new album, Chills & Fever (2017), ventures a bit off from the blues-rock foundation of her prior releases. Fish describes it as “a pure slab of rocking rhythm and blues” and kicks back to the soul sounds of the 1960s and 1970s.
“Fish has always been a top notch singer and guitarist . . . formidable band leader as well.”
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