Shemekia’s voice possesses more nuance; more expression, and more drama than ever before. In 2011 she was named the reigning “Queen of The Blues” and she is living up to that title.
The album opens with the first of three from the songwriting team of Hahn and Wood. The title track Outskirts of Love; Crossbone Beach featuring Robert Randolph on steel guitar; and my favorite Drivin’ Out of Nashville with the line “country music ain’t nothing but the blues with a twang”; I love the Roy Nichol’s type guitar licks included here (Nichol was Merle Haggard’s guitarist). Cardboard Box was written by Hahn with Ian Siegel and it’s a vocal duet with Shemekia and Alvin Youngblood Hart.
[…] This may arguably be Shemekia’s best. Outskirts of Love is a mature recording that will result in additional kudo’s for Ms. Copeland.
Richard Ludmerer, on Making A Scene.