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Stevie Paige - Welcome to the Big Time

Self Released

12 tracks

Wow! I popped the CD from this Australian singer and guitar player in and was immediately taken aback by the great sound. I love being surprised by artists that I’ve never heard of; sometimes it makes me think that maybe I should have already heard of them, but in Stevie’s case she’s only 19, pretty new to the music scene and she’s from half way around the world.

Paige has a superb and powerful voice. When that voice gets paired up with really strong instrumental work it will get her and this album noticed quickly! Her guitar is clean and not over done and her band is outstanding. Mick Connor on keys, Anthony Norris on trumpet, Paul Williamson on the sax, Rob Little on bass and Mark Kennedy on drums and percussion give this album a big sound. But what strikes the listener first and foremost are Paige’s vocals. She’s a singer who seems ready to grasp any style of music and deliver the goods. While this CD is predominantly blues and soul, one can tell that she could belt out a song in almost any genre with success. I really was impressed with her.

Paige wrote all but the final track on the CD; she is also a pretty darn good songwriter. Here songs are fresh and bright, and range from slow, bluesy ballads and soulful songs to jumping and rocking numbers. There is not a bad song in the set. The last song is a modernized take on “Ol’ Man River” and also features Charlie Musselwhite on harp. A stark and bare song with only Paige on vocals with an acoustic guitar and Musselwhite filling in on harp, Paige closes out her album in a grand down home and gutsy style.

A graduate of Australia’s premier music school (the Victorian College of the Arts), Paige is classically trained but embraces the blues and soul. She is a young, new force to be musically reckoned with. I recommend you check her out!!!!

Reviewer Steve Jones is secretary of the Crossroads Blues Society in Rockford. IL.

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