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Charlie Cuccia

 

A true New Orleans original, Charlie Cuccia first came to the notice of audiences throughout the Southeast region during the 1970s as a pompadoured guitar player leaping from sixfoot stages, duck-walking across crowded dance floors, and fixing audience members with his google-eyed stare – and all the while playing an endless series of killer rockabilly and rock-n’roll guitar licks.

“Actually I started out playing clarinet,” he admits. “My mom loved Pete Fountain.” But by the age of ten, he’d acquired his first guitar and immediately started learning Chuck Berry riffs, eventually branching out to absorb influences as diverse as Keith Richards, Bruce Springsteen, Carl Perkins, and Leo Nocentelli of New Orleans’ pioneering funk quartet, The Meters.

As the out-front headliner on this hard-rocking effort, Cuccia clears a swath through some well-known classics and some not-so-expected standards, like his parade-beat seduction of “Mack the Knife” or the romantic blues of “Rainy Night in Georgia.”

Paying tribute to the Crescent City’s deep R&B tradition, Cuccia also turns in sizzling versions of Chris Kenner’s “Sick and Tired” and Lee Dorsey’s “Get Out of My Life, Woman,” along with blues-tinged renditions of classic rock like Gary U.S. Bond’s “New Orleans,” Chuck Berry’s “Nadine,” and Springsteen’s “Spirit in the Night.”

A self-penned instrumental, “The Snake,” gives Cuccia a chance to deploy some neat rockabilly licks, while a six-minute version of the Bob Dylan anthem,  “Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door,” clearly establishes him as a blues-slinger supreme.

All in all, this is a truly original and totally convincing demonstration of rough-hewn, tightly deployed, rockabillytinged, hard-rockin’ rock’n’blues that’s bound to become one of your surprise-discovery favorites.

 
 

 

 

NEW ORLEANS

MACK THE KNIFE

SICK AND TIRED

RAINY NIGHT IN GEORGIA

GET OUT OF MY LIFE WOMAN

NADINE

KNOCKING ON HEAVEN’S DOOR

THE SNAKE

SPIRIT IN THE NIGHT

RING DANG DOO

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