It may have started as a passion for punk music, but for New Orleans-based singer Benjamin Booker, it didn’t exactly end up that way. Of course it was fuel for his creativity, which led him to a self-titled debut album on ATO Records, but what Booker ended up with was a smokey rock album infused with high-energy, sultry blues. And the album quickly created a buzzy following that led him to the top ten on the Billboard charts and claimed him as the “Artist You Need to Know” in Rolling Stone.
When you listen to songs like “Chippewa” and “Have You Seen My Son?” it’ll make you want to kick off your shoes and dance some soulful, electric guitar-inspired moves. Half the album will spur that kind of mood, while the other half, however, with his beautifully low, bourbon-soaked tone makes you want to cradle your heart, dance softly, and linger somewhere in between love and sadness. Songs like “Slow Coming” and “I Thought I Heard You Screaming” are the highlights of that mood.
After Booker’s debut release, the momentum never really stopped after that. He went on to play major festivals all over the world. Newport Folk Festival claimed his performance as one of their best. And eventually he opened up for Courtney Barnett and Jack White. Now his upcoming album called Witness is due out in June–so you better make room for his vivacious stage presence because Booker is back, and on this album he’s got some serious stuff to sing about.