Ally Venable, Real Gone! Review
by Constance Tucker
Ally Venable is a Texas blues/rock guitarist, vocalist, and songwriter who has released her next Ruf Records album, Real Gone! The new record was produced by Grammy winner Tom Hambridge and features guest appearances by Joe Bonamassa and blues legend Buddy Guy. The twelve selections on the album demonstrate her evolution as a songwriter, guitarist, and vocalist. At age twenty-three, the blues singer is making contemporary blues that will appeal to the masses.
The title track opens the album with Venable’s bluesy guitar leading the way. Her vocals have a definite blues sound, slightly gravely, and she accents the off-beats in her phrasing. The song has a form that flows, and the lyrics are easy to understand and relate to. Male background vocals are added to fatten the sound and include a new sonic color.
Of particular interest to all blues fans will be “Texas Louisiana,” featuring the blues icon Buddy Guy. The song shows Venable’s proficiency in traditional blues singing, starting with both singers singing the melody to a feel-good shuffle feel. In addition, Guy’s guitar solo is blues to the max. This song should cement Venable’s recognition in blues circles as she has the seal of approval from Guy.
Real Gone! brings a collection of songs that express just how talented Venable is as a singer, songwriter, and guitarist. These three skills combine to form a complete pack of blues power; add to that Venable’s relentless touring, and you have a blues star in the making.