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Debut CD by hill country bluesman follows label’s acclaimed Back to Bentonia

(ST. LOUIS) ­ On Nov. 14, Broke & Hungry Records will unleash Odell Harris onto an unsuspecting blues world. Fans of ragged, heavily amplified country blues are in for a treat when the CD Searching for Odell Harris hits shelves next month. The CD is the first for Harris and the second for the label, which made waves earlier this year with the release of Back to Bentonia by Jimmy “Duck” Holmes.

Harris is a 66-year-old singer and electric blues guitarist from the hills of North Mississippi. His music shares much in common with that of his late friends, R.L. Burnside and Junior Kimbrough. But he also was influenced as a young man by the blues of his uncle-by-marriage Albert King and his cousin William Bell, who went on to become a soul legend at Stax Records in the 1960s and 1970s. Harris’ sound manages to marry the primal hill-funk of the Burnside/Kimbrough nexus and the greasy strut of a century of coarse Memphis blues.

The 12 tracks that make up Searching for Odell Harris range from gripping solo performances of blues standards like “.44 Blues,” “Laughing To Keep From Crying” and “Sitting on Top of the World,” to raucous band performances featuring support from Mississippi native Bill Abel on guitar and Steve Lightnin’ Malcolm on drums and bass. Abel has backed everyone from David “Honeyboy” Edwards and Henry Townsend to Sam Carr and Big George Brock. Malcolm has worked extensively with Jimbo Mathus, the Burnside Exploration and such elder statesmen of the blues as T Model Ford, Cedell Davis, Robert Belfour and Jimmy “Duck” Holmes.

Searching for Odell Harris was recorded during a single all-night recording session on the gulf coast of Mississippi. The name of the disc alludes to Harris’ legendary elusiveness. He rarely performs in spaces more public than a friend’s living room or front porch.

Searching for Odell Harris will be available at retailers throughout the U.S. and will be distributed by Burnside Distribution Corporation. The disc also will be available through the Broke & Hungry Records Web site at

For more information on this exciting release or on Broke & Hungry Records, contact Jeff Konkel by e-mail at