Roy Roberts Press and Music Reviews

Roy Roberts, Music Producer

Roy Roberts, Cammy Award Winner

Roy Roberts, Blues Legend

Strange Love

"Listening to this disc, it’s hard to believe Roy Roberts is almost 70 years old: his voice has the timbre and sureness of a man at least 50 years younger, and his fretboard technique is as supple, lithe, and imaginative as ever. Although some artists seem hesitant to violate the boundary between “pure” blues and soul (or “soul-blues”), Roberts revels in straddling and leaping across it, from one side to the other, with the irrepressibility of a fun-loving trickster deity. Of course, he uses live instruments no matter which side of the divide he’s on—which may be why “blues” fans embrace him while many “soul-blues” aficionados still don’t.

Roberts’ lyrics, for the most part, are straightforward; he avoids both ironic detachment and double-entendre silliness (another thing that separates him from much mainstream southern soul). A Woman Needs Love (not the Tyrone Davis classic) admonishes would-be players to mind their homework. The title song, a love-at-first-sight tale in the style of Robert Cray (whom Roberts cites as a favorite) deftly evokes Cray’s personalized meld of urbanity, bluesy emotionalism, and pop-tinged jauntiness. The Next Time is a horn-rich blues that could have been lifted from the vintage Bobby Bland songbook (complete with Wayne Bennett–like fretwork from Roberts); I Can’t Wait melds rock ’n’ roll propulsiveness with big-band slickness the way a lot of New Orleans R&B did in the late ’50s and early ’60s. I Truly Love You, in contrast, leavens soul passion and storytelling with pop lightness, strongly evoking such ’70s and ’80s-era blue-eyed soulsters as the Doobies or even one-hit wonders like Looking Glass.

Although not as widely known as he should be, Roy Roberts is a national musical treasure, and this disc captures him at his best." —David Whiteis - Living Blues Magazine

Sicily Moon

"From spicy lyrics to soulful rhythms, Roy has got it here. For a smooth shag groove, try out one of my favorites "If You Can't Put It Out". Then try out "Soul On Fire", another one here I think has excellent possibilities. And yes, there's another here that got my attention - the radio friendly "Let Our Love Last Forever". "Turn That Thang Around" is another one that should get some club play. It's reminiscent of the late Tyrone Davis' hit, "Back That Thang Up". If that's not enough, listen to the catchy "Tonight Your Love Belongs To Me". If you're in the mood to snuggle up with somebody, turn down the lights and put on "Baby". (Is that Barry? Isaac? Nope, it's Roy!) All in all, I am really impressed with this CD. All songs are Roy originals."   Butch Halpin - Carolina Sounds Beach Show

"...I'm unable to pick the best cuts here. They're all superb, and this is the best Roberts has ever sounded on the microphone."     Dylann DeAnna - Blues Wax Magazine

"...Sicily Moon is quite simply outstanding. With this release, Roy continues to solidify his standing in the Soul/R&B market and the Carolina beach music crowd as well....This release has turned out to be a slice of soul and beach music heaven...Is it too early to make the call for possible Album of the Year? Maybe, but this one has an excellent shot!"   Neal "Soul Dog" Furr - Carolina Beach Music Critic

"...Horn-fueled, Hammond B-3, melodic Memphis soul heaven played by musicians not machines...They're all superb...If Roy Roberts continues putting out music this good, we're gonna have to crown him "King of Soul/Blues"    Dylann DeAnna - Blues Critic Magazine    

needless to say, the entire album is well-put together and performed. There are plenty of grand moments on the record, including tunes such as the tender "I'm Gonna Love You," perhaps the standout vocal performance on this record. Roberts' starts calmly and steadily builds to burning emotional peak. "You Better Pack Up" is a writing coup, incorporating one of those memorable hooks that could become a blues staple, "You Better Pack Up." ...If you want to hear some good blues, no, make that good music period, check out Roy Roberts' "Sicily Moon." If you've got any kind of ear, you won't be disappointed."   M. Francis Solomon - Frost Illustrated, Fort Wayne, IN

The critics are right-this is definitely music that satisfies the soul, and also stirs you into action: either toe/finger-tapping or all out dancing. A CAMMY-Award winning singer and guitarist, Roy Roberts is best known in the Southeastern states for his "shagging" soul hit, "I Slipped, Tripped and Fell In Love."   Boz Martin - Carolina Beach Music DJ

Blues & Soul Review Vol 1:

"Roy Roberts' Rock House Records was once named "2001 Blues Label Of The Year" by a Blues Publication. Unfortunately that seems to be the only time Soul/Blues master Roberts got his due. Some of the best Soul/Blues played by actual humans has been coming from Rock House Records for almost two decades now. The label has released acclaimed discs by Roberts, Chick Willis, Eddie Floyd, Floyd Miles, Tommy Thomas and more. This showcase, Blues & Soul Review Vol. 1, is a solid sampler of these works. Although I gotta warn you - check your check book balance - because after listening to this collection you'll be hunting down the original records."  Dylann DeAnna - Blues Wax Magazine

Daylight With A Flashlight:

"...Many of the songs open with Roberts' BB King-influenced guitar work, and his very mellow vocals add a velvety sheen to the proceedings. Coming off his Living Blues "Producer of the Year" award, as well as winning their "Artist Most Deserving of Wider Recognition," success was rapidly approaching. Daylight With A Flashlight contains memorable songs such as "I Want To Love You," and the Bobby Bland-sounding "Your Troubling Mind", a close cousin to "I'll Take Care Of You". Just listen to Roberts' soulful guitar opening this song, and the beautiful instrumental "Anniebell," dedicated to his late mother, allowing us to hear Roberts' prowess on the B-3 Hammond organ, and you'll know why he has received all these recent accolades. A fine release by a great bluesman and one worthy of your consideration. Oh by the way, there are real musicians and horns galore. What more could one ask for?"   Alan Shutro - Blues Bytes Magazine

Deeper Shade of Blue:

"North Carolina bluesman Roy Roberts is an original, and there's no other blues singer or guitarist who can equal his blend of minor-key, soul-laced shuffles... He sings in a style that owes a debt more to the Memphis soulmen than to BB King and his like. The result is a blues album unlike any other... truly a deeper shade of blue than most."    Michael Dregni - Vintage Guitar Magazine

"Every year the blues industry likes to give an award to the blues artist most deserving of wider recognition. Here's a vote for calling that award, "The Roy Roberts Trophy." Its stunning how great this performer and how few people have ever heard of him. Roberts is the consummate blues pro. His CDs are a treat to listen to because the man can absolutely do it all. He writes, he sings, he plays the guitar-and all at a consistently high level...Deeper Shade of Blue is a takeoff from another Roberts CD, Every Shade of Blue. This is appropriate, because once again Roy Roberts has covered the blues from all angles-for sure."  Scott C. Davis - Review

"Roy Roberts delivers soulful vocals, some enticing fretwork, and a dozen well-penned tunes on his latest release. In the tradition of BB King, Roy displays a melodic flair with a laid back delivery. This album contains a good mix of both contemporary and traditional stylings, with a jazz influence."

"There are very few bluesman on the scene today who can hold their own with the legends like Muddy Water, but Roy Roberts is one of 'em. An outstanding collection of soon-to-be classics!"   Shane Copher - Leadhead's Lounge Reviews


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