“Steve Gerard & the National Debonaires featuring James “Rock” Gray Voodoo Workin’ Blue Edge Records BER11-0511 This is one of those recordings that is so good that I am finding it hard to find words and when I run into something that leaves me speechless it is a rare occasion, indeed. This is blues the way it was meant to be played and heard. There’s no “hot-dogging” here but a group of professional musicians, each doing his part and working as a single unit, a well-oiled machine. The result is one of the finest recordings I have heard bar none. To hear something like this one would have to travel through time and even at that it would be difficult to find. This band is exceptional in so many respects. The musicianship is flawless and powerful in the fact that the artists are confident enough to know that so often, less is so much more.”
"Steve Gerard & the National Debonaires (Featuring James "Rock" Gray) - Voodoo Workin' (Blue Edge): Gerard and band mostly focused on jump blues and shuffles on their first couple of releases, but they shift to southern blues and soul on their third album. Relocating to Jackson, MS a while back, Gerard recruited local singer James "Rock" Gray to front the Debonaires. Gray is a versatile vocalist, easily handling swamp blues like Charles Sheffield's title track, Chicago blues, and even New Orleans R&B. Gray also penned three songs, which lean toward the R&B side of blues. The Debonaires are a tight group and faithfully update the classic sounds of 50's and 60's blues and R&B. Hopefully, this one won't slip through the cracks because it's a gem."
““. . . I've been thinking about writing to you about the National Debonaires and the Voodoo Workin’ CD . . . I couldn't believe what I heard on that CD. It's the real shit, played with subtlety and understated grace, and the recording is great in terms of mixing and mastering . . . none of that rock and roll emphasis on the drums. The musicians listen to each other and to James . . . just like the old days . . . one of the best releases of the year.” –”
“Voodoo Workin' - Blue Edge Records Steve Gerard & The National Debonaires featuring James "Rock" Gray This CD brings back memories of a simpler time, when music was unprocessed, pure and joyful to listen to. James Gray's vocals are perfect for this journey down memory lane. They fit the uncluttered music to a "T," and work well with the equally sparse but spot on guitar work of Steve Gerard. Doug James also brings feelings reminiscent of a 50s' sock hop to the mix - all in a good way. In short, the tones, the textures and the talented performers all combine perfectly to produce a timeless and thoroughly enjoyable CD. Check it out. http://www.nationaldebonaires.com/”
“Steve Gerard is a fine guitar player possessing good tone and great taste. Dave Bailey is a blues-singer's blues singer; the man has a voice made for singing this music. The keyboard work of Shinetop Jr. is an (almost) hidden weapon here; listen closely so you hear everything he plays, especially while he is comping. Throw in a rock-solid rhythm section, then spice it up with some special guests and you've got a project to be proud of. “ --”
““As guitarist, Gerard brings his best game to New Sounds From Kansas City, not as the show stopping soloist but as the master stylist at the spine of the thing who knows the idioms of blues, swing, and jazz so profoundly he can produce the exact effect he is seeking in every song.” ”