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When The Devil Goes Blind

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The legendary Charlie Parr's spellbinding finger picking and slide techniques on guitar and banjo place him front & center among the world's foremost string-benders. His blood & guts songs are infused with an originality, integrity and heart rarely (if ever) displayed by contemporaries operating in or around pre-war blues traditions. Further, Parr's performing career (which began in 1988) has taken him from Twin Cities bars and coffeehouses -- studying resident greats like Dave Ray and Spider John Koerner -- to the year 2010, where he's enjoying an ever-growing fan base comprised of folk-blues purists, American Primitive beard-scratchers, jam band-lovin' neo-hippies, and, well, just about every type of person imaginable. Charlie's songs betray (in the words of one writer) a "sense that the gamblers, union workers, criminals and sinners that wander around his songs are peering right over your shoulder." His late father grew up during the Depression, riding freight trains through places like the Piedmont region of North Carolina, rendering the music of that area all the more visceral to Charlie. Charlie's parents were union workers and picket line fixtures during bitter labor strikes in the mid-1980s at Austin, Minnesota's Hormel plant, and Charlie got himself a first-hand view of what those old songs were talking about. When The Devil Goes Blind is his first release on Nero's Neptune Records. Produced by Bo Ramsey (former guitarist with Greg Brown and Lucinda Williams), Charlie's first nationally-distributed record is easily his most fully-realized effort to date. Buy it, and then go see Charlie when he comes to your town. Find out why Greg Brown has compared him with Dave Van Ronk, and even the inscrutable Spider John Koerner has given him the proverbial thumbs up. As everyone seems to say about Charlie, he's "the real deal."