Enough already about the Sauce Boss cooking up a platter of tunes or a heady brew of musical gumbo. Every press writer with an unfinished great American novel in the closet has a cooking/music metaphor to describe the Sauce Boss and his sound. It’s a no brainer. The guy cooks on stage. At the live shows, he’s fed over 148,000 people for free! Well, if you need a simile. Here it is. On “Raw”, the offering is more like sashimi. Unadorned, with little or no production, these twelve originals and one traditional tune were cut live in the studio. Scorching slide guitar slathered like habanero sauce over his very original blues. The Sauce Boss uses no effects on his 53 telecaster or his 59 Les Paul Special. No need when you put them through a Fender Pro Amp made in 1948.
The authentic “sound” is the foundation that “Outlaw Blues”, “All That Meat and No Potatoes”, “The Shakes”, and “Deep in the Shed” all have. “Hurricane Blues” was written, played, and sung by someone with first hand experience. Florida native, Bill “The Sauce Boss” Wharton has weathered more than a few hurricanes. And after playing and serving his famous Gumbo to Katrina survivors in Louisiana, as well as homeless people all over the USA, he righteously sings the blues. “Sweet Stuff” is as sweet and funky as the stuff he’s singing about. “Taxi in the Rain” and “Left Handed Smile” are nailed. Both are ballads without the schmaltz. “Every Inch of Your Body” and “A Hundred Times a Day” are reminiscent of old Southern Rocking Blues. Sauce Boss covers the traditional, rollicking, “Digging My Potatoes” to kick off the disc. So with love and potatoes, the Sauce Boss sincerely sends his sound.