Metro Weekly: “A bluesy, soul-fired blend of Americana, folk, and rock”

Continuing the legacy of blues divas Etta James and Bessie Smith, to say nothing of her late father, Texas bluesman Johnny Copeland, Shemekia Copeland is far from just a powerhouse brassy blues singer-songwriter. The stirring, genre-bending music featured on the 39-year-old’s eighth release, America’s Child, is a bluesy, soul-fired blend of Americana, folk, and rock.

By Doug Rule. Shemekia made it into Metro Weekly’s “Editor’s Picks” before her show at The Hamilton, in D.C., on Friday, October 5.

Offbeat Magazine: “A full-scale blues/R&B diva in her prime”

Shemekia Copeland is a full-scale blues/R&B diva in her prime, the inheritor of a tradition that stretches back to Bessie Smith and beyond. In a world of small voices, this is a woman who could fill an auditorium with the power of her singing without amplification. (…) 

Copeland has grown from working through traditional blues and R&B standards to personalized life observations and inspirational statements. On America’s Child she steps up to the plate to address the ills of our fractured society and offer hope for the future in the statement-of-purpose opener “Ain’t Got Time for Hate.” She shows her sensitivity in a spectacular duet with John Prine, “Great Rain,” and once again pays tribute to her father, the great blues vocalist/guitarist/songwriter Johnny Copeland, with a cover of his “Promised Myself” featuring Steve Cropper. The always-unpredictable Shemekia goes well into left field for a powerful rendition of the Ray Davies classic “I’m Not Like Everybody Else,” coining an instant blues classic. At a moment in music history when a lot of people are wondering what happened to the verities of great singers singing great songs, Shemekia shows that we’re still not that far from home. 

By John Swenson. Read the full review in Offbeat Magazine, about Shemekia’s latest album, “America’s Child.” “A reaction to contemplating the chaotic world”

“I feel like we’re all so frustrated right now with everything that’s going on,” said Copeland. “I feel people these just days are sick of it and are ready for what beauty pageant contestants always ask for, and that’s world peace. I mean, can we just have some peace for a change? And what I was trying to accomplish with the record is, I always feel like if the world ends and my records got into in a time capsule, people will know what was happening in the world at that time. That’s important to me, you know, to be current.” 

Shemekia Copeland, whose “latest album, America’s Child, is a reaction to contemplating the chaotic world that her newborn son will inherit some day,” answered David Menzies’s questions for, before her show at the White Eagle Hall in Jersey City, New Jersey, on September 30, 2018. Read the full interview and review. 

Classic Rock Magazine: “Copeland’s outlook is redemptive and hopeful”

It’s not often you find the chip surpassing the old block, but with respect to the late Texas tussler Johnny Copeland, his daughter Shemekia is making that hallowed surname her own.

Following the best-so-far Outskirts of Love album, Copeland’s eighth release coincided with her pregnancy, and is an icy shiver at the poisoned world her son’s set to inherit. Refreshingly (…) Copeland’s outlook is redemptive and hopeful (…) tough but tender (…) open hearted (…) demanding the truth.

By Henry Yates in Classic Rock Magazine, who gives America’s Child 8 stars.

“A real jolt of inspiration in these trying times”

Shemekia Copeland was one of those people who said she never felt becoming a parent would change their life much. No surprise, she turned out to be wrong, but Copeland’s new perspective led to the most potent and meaningful album of her career, “America’s Child,” just out on the Alligator label. (…) 

There are a dozen fine songs on the new album, which might be her most rocking effort ever, but the opening three are a real jolt of inspiration in these trying times. “Ain’t Got Time for Hate” is a powerful litany of advice to her son, expressing that sentiment with the immediacy of lines like “one more moment, is a moment too late.”

By  Jay N. Miller, before Shemekia’s performance at The Iron Horse in Northampton, Massachussets, this Saturday, September 22, at City Winery in Boston on Monday September 24 and at the Narrows Center for the Arts in Fall River on Thursday, September 27. Read the full and very detailed story in the The Patriot Ledger.

South Coast Today: “This album is more intense”

Shemekia Copeland isn’t shy about taking on social and political issues in her music, and her newest release is no exception. Copeland (…) is touring with “America’s Child.” Though she’s always touched on social issues such as homelessness, this album is more intense, she said in a recent phone interview.

After the 2016 birth of her son, Johnny Lee Copeland-Schultz (named after her father, the late blues artist Johnny Lee Copeland) she said she started to take an even closer look at the world in which she was raising her baby. And she found plenty sing about on “America’s Child,” right from the opening song, “Ain’t Got Time for Hate.”

“I’m frustrated, but hopeful. It’s like the drunk uncle who shows up at the barbecue – you want to leave, but you love him and hope he gets better. That’s how I feel about America right now,” she said, adding that frustration is evident in the songs on her new album (…) 

By Linda Murphy, before Shemekia’s performance on Thursday, Sept 27, at the Narrows Center for the Arts in Fall River, Massachussetts. Read the full story in South Coast Today

The Roanoke Times: “Returning as the headliner”

Last time singer Shemekia Copeland played Jefferson Center, she stole the show from a blues icon, Taj Mahal. Copeland’s powerful-yet-controlled voice and her expert band elicited a standing ovation from more than 900 people at the end of her February 2014 opening set.
More than four years later, Copeland is returning, this time as the headliner. 

“I’m excited to be coming back,” Copeland said. “You always remember the good, fun ones, you know.” 

By Tad Dickens. Read the full story and interview announcing Shemekia Copeland’s return to Jefferson Center, in Roanoke, Virginia, on Dec. 6, along with the Cedric Burnside Project –the September 14 show that had to be rescheduled, due to the weather– in The Roanoke Times

Shemekia ready to bring America’s Child to AmericanaFest this week

Shemekia Copeland is ready to bring America’s Child to Nashville, Tennessee, for AmericanaFest. The 19th annual festival is held from September 11-16 by the Americana Music Association.

She will showcase with her full band at City Winery on Thursday, September 13 at 7:30 pm.
(609 Lafayette Street, Nashville, TN)

Additionally she will appear on Nashville’s 89.5 WMOT-FM Wired In Wednesday live broadcast from The Local on Wednesday, September 12 at 2:00 pm. The show will stream online.
(110 28th Ave. North, Nashville, TN)

Also on Thursday, September 13, she will appear at 1:15pm (with guitarist Arthur Neilson) before a live studio audience for a taping of the nationally syndicated radio program Acoustic Café at the Sound Stage Recording Studio.
(10 Music Circle South, Nashville, TN)

Find out the full AmericanaFest schedule

The Morton Report: “It feels like Shemekia Copeland has recorded her crown jewel”

It feels like Shemekia Copeland has recorded her crown jewel. There is such a sweeping view of life in America today that is captured in all its guts and glory, that America’s Child could be her lifetime calling card. It’s that accomplished. Copeland takes out her wandering shoes and digs into several different styles of music, all the while keeping it close to her heart (…)

She sings with a strength that few others possess today. 

Shemekia Copeland’s critically acclaimed release, America’s Child,  is reviewed by Bill Bentley in his September Bentley’s Bandstand column in The Morton Report. Read the full review. 

The Blade: “New insight into her enormous talents”

Shemekia Copeland has always been a powerhouse blues singer. But on America’s Child, she adds some Americana, rock, pop, soul, and even a little country to her bread-and-butter, down-home and gritty Chicago blues style for a heartfelt, passionate disc that’s another rousing success but for different reasons. (…) 

Recorded in Nashville, this disc offers new insight into her enormous talents.

By Tom Henry, about Shemekia Copeland’s new album, America’s Child. Read the full review on The Blade