12 January 2020

Detroit Blues Society ‘Red Hot Roll’ called Eliza Neals

“Eliza Neals has been on a red hot roll the last couple years but fans here on the Motor City scene know it’s been longer then many may realize. First stepping out in 2008 with her award winning self produced “No Frogs For Snakes,” then hooking up with producer, co writer Tino Gross for 2012’s “Messin With A Fool,” teaming up with guitarist Howard Glazer to break onto the national scene on 2015’s “Breaking and Entering” then following two years later with “10,000 Feet Below.” This success has put Eliza on a whirlwind ride of constant tours throughout Europe and the States bringing her to the attention of headliners from Buddy Guy, Walter Trout, Mike Zito, Tommy Castro and Joe Louis Walker, all have been overcome by her charms while feeling the power of her vocals. One ‘Mean’ guitar slinger who couldn’t resist this ‘Sweet’ young singer is Popa Chubby aka Ted Horowitz. Wanting to recapture the magic he felt with her on stage Chubby has produced Eliza’s newest release of five originals, “Sweet Or Mean,” in his own studio backed by his band including David Keyes on keyboards, Chris Gambaro-Vega bass, John Medeiros Jr. drums and the guitar of Popa Chubby leading the charge.

​The opener pulls out all the stops blasting into “Pawn Shop Blues” as Popa flash’s a mean slide almost as gritty as Neals vocals boosting the energy with Ian Hendrickson on sax, Michael Leonhart trumpet and a backing chorus that shakes her down to her in hock Gucci shoes. Eliza takes an autobiographical slant against Chubby’s slashing riffs as a girl born in the Motor City, Daddy didn’t like it but she was singing for her survival, then as the tension builds she declares that the blues set her free cause she was just a Rock n Roll girl who’d been “Bitten By The Blues.” Easing back the rhythm but not the power for “Blackish Grey” as this Popa matches her intensity but on “Livin With Yo Mama” its the dynamics between the vocals and guitar that makes them really click. Chubby cuts the cord with a barely restrained acoustic guitar on “Knock Knock Knockin” while Eliza just can’t hold back the boldness of her vocal, the girl’s just gotta let it out. To finish this set they revamp “Pawn Shop Blues” minus the horns for a stripped down rough roadhouse version that lets the piano and slide stand out and you know Eliza never holds back.

​Eliza Neals has been working hard performing her own personal magic on the road and her latest “Sweet Or Mean” brings a few of those magical encore moments into sharper studio focus.”

By Roger & Margaret White

THANK You Detroit Blues Society!