Chainsaw Dupont "Ghost Kings of Beale Street" : Review of Record and Live Performance

A Chainsaw Cuts Through Chicago

Chainsaw Dupont




Anybody picking up a guitar for the first time learns the basic blues. After all, it is the foundation of all rock n' roll. But few guitar players have the ability to make the leap from student to teacher. Robert Johnson, B.B. King, Eric Clapton, Buddy Guy, Reverend Gary Davis, R.L. Burnside, these are the teachers and we their students. Attention students, your new teacher has arrived and class is in session. Chainsaw Dupont is his name, and the topic is 'Ghost Kings of Beale Street'.

Chicago's Chainsaw Dupont



Recorded at the legendary ' Sun Studios' in Memphis Tennessee, Chainsaw Duponts' 2007 release, 'Ghost Kings of Beale Street ' brings us a fresh and bold tribute to the blues. With 13 brand new testimonials, Chainsaw Dupont brings us a familiar but fresh approach to an American original.

The albums first track is titled 'Invisible man'. With an upbeat feel to it, this song is a sad tale of never being noticed by that girl we've ever wanted to be noticed by. 'She's just the pretty girl all the pretty girls wanna be. I'm the invisible, a lover that she never will see.' Admittedly, Chainsaw Dupont intended this song to be a spoof of 'Secret Agent Man', but as the song went along, it became a song about forbidden love.

Playing at Fitzgerald's (photo Glenn Kaupert)



Arguably the most memorable song on the album is its second track,' Sinners or Saints'. With its rockabilly driving swing, added with poignant lyrics about past legends in the music world, Chainsaw Dupont asks the question, are they sinners or saints. 'Charlie Parker, Charlie Parker, Cholly Parker needle took you in your prime. Down on Fifty-second Street, Bebop set us free. Charlie Parker died for you and me'. Mentioning other legends like, Jimmy Hendrix, Robert Johnson, Buddy Holly, and Elvis Presley, 'Sinners or Saints' is about how they became more legendary after death than in life. One thing all of these legends of music history have in common is that they died before their prime.

The acoustic guitar (photo Brett Grafton)



Chainsaw Dupont's last track,' Day of the Dead' is a modern day blues song. With an edgy 70's era funk groove, its lyrics are about modern day war. A tribute to our troops, as well as humanizing the opposition, the songs are a personal cry about what they encounter everyday. ' I'm a Humvee cop in a drive-by war, skippin' stones in the sand, I love my country, but I know it's true, the people out to kill me love theirs too'

Chainsaw Dupont pleases the crowd



Earlier this month, I had an opportunity to check out just how modern and versatile this group actually is. In the small, intimate setting of 'Uncommon Ground', a small cafe/restaurant/bar just blocks from Wrigley Fields' friendly confines, Chainsaw Dupont treated the audience to a stripped down acoustic set consisting of a six and twelve string duo. They played their unknown hits with conviction and compassion. This music added the ingredients I needed to sooth my palate, as I washed down my food with a refined lager. I encourage you, to keep an eye out in your local papers for upcoming shows near you. This hidden gem named Chainsaw Dupont will renew your love for the blues. Until then, savor their latest album' Ghost Kings of Beale Street'.

Ghost Kings of Beale Street



'Ghost Kings of Beale Street' is available at:
Jazz Record Mart, 25 E. Illinois, 312-222-1467,
http://www.chainsawdupont.com, or via CDBaby at 1-800-BUY-MYCD.




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