Little Milton, Otis Clay, Ruby Andrews | Theater Critic's Choice | Chicago Reader

Little Milton, Otis Clay, Ruby Andrews 

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Here's a blues and soul revue in the great tradition. Mississippi-born Little Milton Campbell is among the most-enduring contemporary bluesmen performing regularly on the black circuit: his vocal style fuses eloquent blues passion with contemporary nuances, and he's developed a guitar technique that fits postwar King-style string bending and pop arrangements into a solid down-home blues framework. Chicago soul man Otis Clay, known for such hits as "Precious, Precious" and "Turn Back the Hands of Time" has been tottering on the verge of international stardom for what seems like forever: from his earliest Memphis recordings on the Hi label through his current Chicago work, he's built a reputation as a deeply expressive and thoroughly professional craftsman. His up-tempo rave-ups are drenched with sweat and gospel heat, and his dusky croon makes him spellbinding on ballads. Ruby Andrews, another Mississippi native, is best known for her 1967 hit "Casanova (Your Playing Days Are Over)"; she's a fiery vocalist who manages to maintain an aura of suave sophistication even as she delves into her roots and comes up with an incendiary combination of deep soul and contemporary R & B slickness. Tonight, 7:30 PM, South Shore Cultural Center, 7059 S. South Shore; 753-0640 or 559-1212.

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