“A powerhouse vocalist
delivering the truth”

“When the whole world seems fake, give me something real,” Shemekia Copeland pleads on “Smoked Ham and Peaches.” You can say the daughter of the late bluesman Johnny Copeland is an antidote to artifice herself. Since her 1998 debut, she has been a commanding presence, a powerhouse vocalist delivering the truth in the tradition of the great blues and soul singers while forging her own musical path.

So it goes with America’s Child. The album was recorded in Nashville with producer-guitarist Will Kimbrough and other Americana stalwarts and includes songwriting and vocal contributions from John Prine and Mary Gauthier. Copeland is obviously looking to make some big statements here, and she comes out swinging with “Ain’t Got Time for Hate,” a snarling, blues-inflected rocker. That segues into “Americans,” whose message of inclusiveness is saved from preachiness by a light lyrical and musical touch. Then comes the provocative “Would You Take My Blood?,” which poses a question that confronts the limits of racial prejudice: “ … or would you rather die than share your life with mine?” (…) 

By Nick Cristiano. Read on his full review of America’s Child, which is being released today, Friday, August 3rd,