Maria Muldaur spices her music with passion and a voice that’s scintillating, brazen, and lightly burnished. Whether dipping into the songbook of Peggy Lee or wading into the Louisiana bayou, she completely envelops herself in her chosen style. For over 40 years as a performer, she’s literally lived the life of someone steeped in the American roots music songbook, whether it’s blues, jazz, gospel, folk, country or rhythm & blues. She’s the real deal, a true natural resource without any artificial affectations or jive.
Born and raised in New York City’s Greenwich Village, Muldaur grew up in a very fertile musical climate. While still in her teens, Maria joined John Sebastian and David Grisman to form the Even Dozen Jug Band, and soon moved to Boston to join the influential Jim Kweskin Jug Band. This group attracted national attention and a recording contract, and when they disbanded in 1968, Maria had her pick of musical directions to take. After making a couple of blues records with husband Geoff Muldaur, she was asked to record a pop song called “Midnight at the Oasis.” It was her first solo recording, and it went platinum.
Since the early 1970s Maria has been involved in a dizzying number of projects: jazz, gospel, swing tunes, roots music, New Orleans anthems, protest songs, and more.
Now in 2012, for her 40th album, Maria has produced …First Came Memphis Minnie, a loving tribute to the pioneering blues woman who inspired and influenced so many female blues artists. The album features special guests Rory Block, Ruthie Foster, Bonnie Raitt, Phoebe Snow and Koko Taylor, accompanied by the amazing guitar work of Del Rey, David Bromberg, Alvin Youngblood Hart, Roy Rogers, Bob Margolin, Steve James and Steve Freund.
Muldaur will kick off the release of First Came Memphis Minnie with an extensive tour. She’ll be accompanied by her Red Hot Bluesiana Band, and will perform songs not only from the new CD, but also from her critically acclaimed and Blues Award nominated last CD, Steady Love.
What Other People Have Been Saying...
“Muldaur has got the blues… once you zero in on the emotional nuances of her finely weathered drawl, you’ll hear an inspired change of heart – her voice becomes an oasis for troubled souls.” -People magazine