Robert Finley has a quite remarkable career. Born in 1954, he spend most of his life as a semi-professional artist, before he focused on his musical career in 2016. On 27th October 2023, he is releasing his fourth studio album, Black Balou. I had a listen.
Robert Finley – About The Artist
Robert Bernice is a blues and soul artist from Bernice, Louisiana. The singer-songwriter started playing the guitar at the age of 11. However, he initially pursued a career in the U.S. Army, where is also worked as a helicopter technician in Germany. In 2015, Finley started to be back on stage on packaged tours. One year later, he released his debut album Age Don’t Mean a Thing at the age of 62. In 2017, he released his second album. Two years later, he appeared as a contestant of America’s Got Talent, where he was eliminated in the semifinals. His latest major release was the 2021 album Sharecropper’s Son.
Robert Finley – Black Bayou – Track by Track
The eleven song album lasts 41 minutes
1. Livin’ Out A Suitcase
If you haven’t been into the music of Robert Finley yet, the opener already gives you a nice idea what his music is like. The key style of Livin’ Out A Suitcase is definitely a bluesy groove. However, you do feel the soul elements in his music strongly. Lovely sound.
2. Sneakin’ Around
The single release Sneakin’ Around is a nice blues song with some blues rock attitude. Apart from the bass groove, the guitar is the leading instrument in here, indeed. The song is a well-written and beautifully told reckoning with a woman.
3. Miss Kitty
After a forty second instrumental intro, Robert Finley is praising Miss Kitty in his third song. However, the memories feel to be fading – I know she blew my mind, but I don’t remember when she did it. I guess I am not telling too much when I say that this love story is not a happy ending one – just perfect stuff for a melancholic blues song.
4. Waste Of Time
The dark guitar sounds in the background of Waste of Time leads to a very heavy and intense touch while listening to this song. This song also comes with a touch of soul again – even though the album so far is definitely a blues one.
5. Can’t Blame Me For Trying
The groovy part of Can’t Blame Me For Trying is very present, especially in the first minute of the 3:30 minutes. The groove is caught me from the very beginning. Later, the song also features a really nice instrumental section.
6. Gospel Blues
The 2:50 minute Gospel Blues also feels to be influenced by other Americana genres. Overall, this leads to a lighter listen – a welcome relax in the middle of the album.
7. Nobody Wants To Be Lonely
The beautiful ballad Nobody Wants To Be Lonely beautifully underlines the soulful part of Robert Finley’s musical work. The very dramatic setting leads to one of the best listens of the album.
8. What Goes Around (Comes Around)
Like its predecessor, What Goes Around (Comes Around) has already been shared with the Robert Finley fans as a single. The song feels to start as a gentle blues track. However, the song has some really nice rock qualities. Love it.
9. Lucky Day
The song, which is looking back to Robert’s life, is even having some pop music spirit. The song is about the Lucky Day, when his love situation finally changed. Beautiful storytelling.
That’s when you
Walked in the room
I remember it was early
One Saturday afternoon
And that look on your face told me
That was my lucky day
10. You Got It (And I Need It)
The contrast of a rather heavy melody and the falsetto vocals by Robert Finley at the beginning of the song create a very special episode of the album. However, the song then falls back to the typical sound of Black Bayou. The falsetto parts still turn this song into a special listen.
11. Alligator Bait
6:11 minutes – Robert Finley is taking you on an epic and very theatric trip at the end of his 2023 album. The Alligator Bait takes all the time necessary to develop and later tell the story. The lyrics are the clear focus of this song.
Robert Finley – Black Bayou – Spotify
Here is the album on Spotify:
Robert Finley – Black Bayou – My View
Black Bayou is a really nice album. Despite Robert Finley defines a certain sound from the very beginning, there is still some variety. Vice versa, the album is definitely not an easy and simple listen. I like it.
Favorite Song: What Goes Around (Comes Around)
Museums (Country Music)