Johnny Adams: Man of My Word

Johnny Adams, the regal “Tan Canary” from New Orleans, sings with pure, soul-stirring emotion on Man Of My Word (Rounder 11661-2155-2; 59:57). Rebounding from a life-threatening illness in 1997, Adams is back in classic belting form with this collection of heart-wrenching ballads (“Even Now,” “Now You Know,” “It Tears Me Up”), infectious funk (“It Ain’t The Same Thing,” “Bulldog Break His Chain”), slow blues (“This Time I’m Gone For Good”), country (“I Don’t Want To Know”) and good ol’ Southern soul (“Going Out Of My Mind Sale,” “Up And Down World”). Another highlight here is an a cappella rendition of the gospel chestnut “Never Alone,” performed with Aaron Neville, Nick Daniels, Earl J. Smith, Jr., and Charles Elam III, which closes out this superb deep soul showcase in majestic fashion.