Layin' Down the Line
Benny Ferrander started taking private guitar instruction from me shortly after we met at my weekly Blues Jam at Club Stampen in Stockholm around 2007. He was already a gifted electric guitar player and wanted to expand his understanding of improvisation. After a few lessons, he asked me about slide guitar and I said "well, you need one of these for that" and thrust my National metal-body Style O into his hands. He just had to have one and we arranged to meet at the local guitar store who I knew carried a good selection of them. He then found his match... Benny picked up quick and within a short time was hauling his heavy, steel bodied resonator to the Blues Jams and working out a repertoire. Within a year and a half he was playing gigs and he didn't even have to make a deal with the devil (I think?). He soon wanted to record this music so he could have a good representation of what he was doing and asked me to help him in the studio. What I appreciate about Benny is that he doesn't realize what a natural he is, he just loves the blues. He has chosen a selection of old songs to record by some of his favorite Delta blues artists but his interpretation is not copied at all, it is his own voice coming through. He's comfortable with that voice and I hear something that seems to connect right back to what is most important about good blues music; the story. His warm voice and confident playing invite you in and then take you for a walk through the experiences of the blues that was just as much a fantasy to me when I first discovered them over 30 years ago as it is to him now. Benny has written a few of his own songs here as well, which I contributed to but they come from his own family experience and expression, yet still includes this timeless quality of those same old blues songs he performs. I am happy that Benny has found his voice in this timeless style of music. I'm proud that I could be a part of guiding him though this process and awaken a sense of wonder with the eternal blues. But there are some things that can't ever be taught or learned. Listen closely here and you'll know what I mean... -Brian Kramer; Producer Layin' Down The Line.