“Fowler is as expressive a songwriter as he is a singer and instrumentalist. He’s preaching an otherworldly, Americana-themed gospel from a six-stringed pulpit. He is a roots guitar guru.” – Living Blues
“He’s a formidable slide guitar player who has also mastered lap steel and dobro as well as electric guitar; indeed, Fowler may be so skillful that he prefers pickin’ tasty to larger-than-life guitar heroics.” – Billboard
Florida’s Gulf Coast has produced a plethora of distinctive musicians, from the blues of Tampa Red to jazz greats Cannonball and Nat Adderley to former Allman Brothers guitarist Dickey Betts to The Outlaws. Tampa’s Damon Fowler, a masterful singer, guitar player, and songwriter, has absorbed the best of and furthered the work of the region’s definitive artists. A hard-driving troubadour, his music is steeped with soul and representative of the many styles that make up the roots of American music. He has gained his peers’ respect given his featured slot in Butch Truck’s Freight Train band and his side gig as guitarist in the Dickey Betts Band. Critics have compared Fowler’s guitar work to Johnny Winter and Jeff Beck, while his slide guitar is reminiscent of the late Duane Allman. Fowler can play fiery guitar runs with the best of them, and his lyrical work on lap steel and dobro makes him a stand-out performer among the legions of guitar heroes.
For Palladium Live!, Fowler brings his trio, Justin Headley, drums and Chuck Riley, bass, along with keyboardist Dan Signor and harmonica star TC Carr. The concert features lots of Fowler’s original tunes, and his take on classic blues, and some of his always-surprising covers.
As luck would have it, Fowler’s latest album is set to be released on the very same day as our show! Alafia Moon marks his 8th solo release. With all the makings of a classic roots record, it is Damon’s unique fretwork, soulful vocals, and vivid songwriting – he composed all but one tune – that stand at the forefront of this recording. Produced by Fowler and George Harris, the album kicks off with the swampy blues romp, “Leave It Alone,” then surges into a fiery blues-rocker, “I’ve Been Low.”
The title track’s heartfelt vocals and a transcendent guitar solo pay homage to Fowler’s experiences on the rustic and scenic Alafia River near his hometown. His metaphor captures the song’s heartbeat; “Tonight my heart will flow just like the river, Underneath the Alafia moon.” Each track on Alafia Moon delivers catchy rhythms, as displayed on the funky “Make The Best Of Your Time,” poignant lyrics and a taste of Fowler’s well-established storytelling sense of humor on Guy Clark’s “The Guitar” and “The Umbrella/Kicked His Ass Out.”
Alafia Moon proves that Fowler plays what he feels without trying to sound like someone else. His artistic growth has indeed pushed him to more innovation derived from his Blues, Gospel, and Americana roots.
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