Judy Sings The Blues – Come Over Here | Album Review

Judy Sings The Blues – Come Over Here

Self-Release – 2022


10 tracks; 43 minutes

Based in the Mid-Atlantic region, Judy Sings The Blues is a vehicle for singer and songwriter Judy Mangini. This all-original album was recorded in Delaware and seems to have been something of a cathartic experience for Judy who states in the sleeve notes that she has suffered a lot of hurt and abuse in her sixty-two years, as well as being loved and cared for; one sign of the latter is the cover which was produced by three of Judy’s grandchildren. The musicians involved are Lin Doughten on guitar, Chuck Hearne on bass and Keith ‘KB’ Brooks on drums; Joey Fulkerson plays lead guitar on four tracks, Dan Long keys on three and Brian Cunningham sax on one. Special guests Victor Wainwright (keys) and Albert Castiglia (lead guitar/BV’s) appear on one track each.

The album opens with “Are Ya”, funky rhythms beneath Joey’s wah-wah lead lines, Judy asking what the guy will do with her, perhaps checking where this particular relationship may head. The band funks it up on “Junk And Trunk”, aided by Victor’s effervescent keyboard work before Albert adds some typically robust riffs to the hard-rocking “I Guess I Was Wrong”, another tale of a relationship that has gone downhill. Joey returns to lead on “47 Feet”, Judy sounding angry that the guy knows “nothing about me, so back up 47 feet”. The title track “Come On Over” is dedicated to “all the young girls like me”, a slower tune with Lin providing both lead and rhythm guitar as Judy sings convincingly about the difficult subject of child abuse: “Come over here and sit down beside me, you’re so very pretty. You can’t tell your Dad, you can’t tell your Mom, they won’t believe what they heard, just say that you lied”. A disturbing portrayal of such a terrible topic. Sax enhances “I Got The News Today”, as Judy sings of “a crushing blow” and being dismayed before a shuffle, Judy bitterly describing someone whose past actions have resulted in the fact that friends have abandoned them, “You Can’t Even Buy One”. “He Hit Her” is dedicated “to women like me”, a disturbing portrayal of domestic abuse to which the victim can only ask why he mistreats her and does not care: in the end “she shot him to live”. The attractive latin rhythms and Lin’s gentle guitar work only serve to emphasise the tragedy of the situation. “You Got Me On My Knees” has a jazzy feel courtesy of Dan’s piano and Judy closes the album with a plea to be treated as an “Equal”, Joey supplying the slide lead over a chugging rhythm, Judy clearly at the end of her tether at being treated as second class in the relationship.

The music throughout is well played and attractive and Judy delivers the songs in a clear vocal style and she has clearly needed to get these issues off her chest. It is not always an easy listen but it is good to know that she has not only survived these experiences but has found love and tenderness in her life.

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