About ‘From The Shoals’

A cd cover with some trees and plants

Sooo… I know some of yall wonder how I get my inspiration for my projects …. well here’s the scoop on FROM THE SHOALS …. 

Way back in January 2019 …  at the IBC (International Blues Competition) in Memphis Tennessee …. I wondered into the Hard Rock Cafe at it’s new location in the ol’ Elvis Presley club at the corner on 2nd & Beale Street to check out my memorabilia case … that hangs with my blue sparkly gown between Johnny Cash & Little Milton (on the right hand side as you are headed up stairs via the staircase). There I ran into a group of musicians and their family & friends from Croatia (Novigrad-Istra) … it was common to meet folks from Europe on Beale Street … but IBC was alway an exceptional time to do so. These folks were so warm and full of fun, I invited them to join me the following night at my regular show at Silky O’Sullivan’s where I had been performing nightly since 1997 …. So it was cool and fun when they all arrived the following evening … I invited one your man up (Davor Hačić) to join me for a song …. well I had consumed a few wee drams of Jack Daniels …. and his English wasn’t so great and my Croatian was non existent, I would not understand then the pronunciation of what “Hutch” as he is now called was trying to convey to me.  But I am now proud to announce my Croatian is getting much better …HA! Anyway … we all spent the remainder of their stay hanging out and sharing stories etc…. then COVID hit …  and by March 18, 2020 My almost 25 years on Beale Street came to a screeching halt.  I started to get messages on my FB messenger from a mysterious young man….  turned out to be Hutch… so we re-connected and he invited me to come to Croatia to perform 3 shows… All went better than expected. Upon the eve of my departure, September 2nd  we sat down in the 9 Pub and started to write songs… we wrote three that night, Lost Young Love, Sailors (we haven used this one yet) &  ??? Cant remember the 3rd one…. looked all over for those little pieces of paper … I’ll add in when I find them… someday I hope… Then over the next 5 months we wrote 7 more songs over the internet mostly reflecting on the history of ” The Shoals” “Trail Of Tears” and our journey to the Nutthouse Recording Studio….. I had written 3 songs prior with my friend and GREAT songwriter Mark Narmore from Sheffield AL  (Never Stopped Loving You, Severed, & Slideman). Choosing what 2 cover songs Tell Mama (formerly recorded in the Shoals by Etta James with Ricky Hall at Fame and David Hood & Clayton Ivey were both on that session also) & Jimmy Hughes Steal Away …. were not easy choices….  but definitely the correct choices in the end.  Being surrounded by musical genus’ is always a plus for any recording… Again I am sooo TOTALLY blessed!!  Hvala!! 

The Band:

Drums ~ Bernard “Pretty” Purdie

Bass ~ David Hood

B3 & Wurlitzer ~ Clayton Ivey 

Piano ~ Mark Narmore

Guitar ~ Will McFarlane

Guitar ~ Davor Hačić – Hutch 

Saxophone ~ Brad Guin 

Trumpet ~ Marc Franklin 

Vocals~ Barbara Blue

BGV ~ Kimberlie Helton  ( & Hutch on Curse Of Beauty) 

BGV on Song OF The River ~ Hutch, David Hood, Will McFarlane, Mark Narmore, Celia Purdie  

The Songs:

1. The Shoals  3:20

B. Blue D.Hacic / Big Bad Blue Publishing BMI 

2. Nutthouse Blues  7:10

B. Blue D.Hacic / Big Bad Blue Publishing BMI 

3. Tell Mama  3:22

C. Carter, W. Terrell, M. Daniel / Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC, Kobalt Music Publishing Ltd. BMI

4. Steal Away  4:04

J.Hughes / Sony/ATV Music Publishing  LLC, Kobalt Music Publishing Ltd. BMI

5. Severed  5:13

B.Blue, M.Narmore / Big Bad Blue Publishing BMI / Oven Music INC. BMI 

6. Curse of Beauty  4:43

B.Blue D.Hacic / Big Bad Blue Publishing BMI 

7. Lost Young Love  4:40

B.Blue D.Hacic / Big Bad Blue Publishing BMI 

8. Slide Man  3:15

B.Blue, M.Narmore / Big Bad Blue Publishing BMI / Oven Music INC. BMI 

9. Too Far  7:41

B.Blue D.Hacic / Big Bad Blue Publishing BMI 

10. Nothing Last Forever  3:09

B.Blue D.Hacic / Big Bad Blue Publishing BMI 

11. Never Stopped Loving You  5:12

B.Blue, M.Narmore / Big Bad Blue Publishing BMI / Oven Music INC. BMI 

12. Song Of The River  6:42

B.Blue D.Hacic / Big Bad Blue Publishing BMI 

13.  Trail Of Tears  6:25

B. Blue D.Hacic / Big Bad Blue Publishing BMI 

Where it all happened:

Producer: Mr Jim Gaines 

Co Producer: Barbara Blue 

Mixed by: Mr Jim Gaines

Mastered by: L. Nix Mastering

Recorded at

Nutthouse Studios, Sheffield AL 

Engineered by: Jimmy Nutt 

Engineer Assistant ~ Jonathan Moody

Drum Tech ~ Justin Holder


Bessie Blue Studios

Stantonville TN

Engineered by: Mr Jim Gaines

Special thanks to “Pappa” Jack Martin for the loan of the Wha Wha pedal YOU ROCK! AND

Last but not least … Probably THE MOST IMPORTANT.. The people who helped me financially get this project off of the ground: 

Executive Producers:

Dr. Paul Kraisinger

Rose Krebs 

Joellyn Sullivan

Barbara Blue

Donna & Smokey Ferrell

Nicolette Armstrong  

Judy & Mark Scates 

© 2023 Barbara Blue. All Rights Reserved.