America’s Child “album of the year” for New City Music

With “America’s Child,” Shemekia Copeland has given us something real; and just as Mavis Staples’ most recent recording was penned and steered by Jeff Tweedy, Copeland here had a strong guide in producer and collaborator and Americana Instrumentalist of the Year winner Will Kimbrough, who plays guitar and organ and writes several songs. Kimbrough fronted Will & The Bushmen in the 1980s, and penned songs for many greats since, including Emmylou Harris, who contributes backing vocals here, and has become a serial collaborator, including with Staples. “Shemekia Copeland is the real deal,” Kimbrough says. “‘America’s Child’ goes deep and Shemekia‘s voice—a national treasure—carries the songs effortlessly, whether topical, personal, spiritual, political or just plain raucous fun.  Shemekia rears back her head and what comes out is humanity made vocal.”

Maybe this is the best record of the year. Every time I listen, I think, have I heard any album better than this in 2018, from end to end? There are moments of levity and moments of seriousness and heartbreak; it’s not a perfect album, but the one constant is her palpable passion, and that is Shemekia Copeland through-and-through.

By Craig Bechtel. Read the full review on New City Music