Janiva Magness On Mountain Stage

  • Playlist
  • Embed
    <iframe src="http://www.npr.org/player/embed/96216679/96216676" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">


  • "Sometimes You Got to Gamble"
  • "You Sound Pretty Good"
  • "That's What Love Will Make You Do"
  • "Fool Me Again"
  • "You Were Never Mine"
  • "Promised Land" *
  • * Performed by Bob Thompson

California-based blues singer Janiva Magness has turned a life of hard knocks into success as one of the top vocalists in a crowded genre. She's twice been named the Best Contemporary Female Vocalist at the Blues Music Awards, and in 2008, she was nominated for the B.B. King Entertainer of the Year award. Growing up in Detroit, Magness was influenced by not only the classic sounds of Motown, but also the country and blues recordings in her father's collection.

Janiva Magness 300

The latest CD from Janiva Magness is this year's What Love Will Do. Brian Blauser hide caption

toggle caption Brian Blauser

Magness has been working and recording with husband Jeff Turmes, who wrote "Sometimes You Got to Gamble" and "You Sound Pretty Good," both heard here in live performance on Mountain Stage. Her career began to take off in Phoenix before she moved to Los Angeles in 1986. She released several independent albums and was even courted by MCA Records, a story she tells her Mountain Stage audience while introducing "You Sound Pretty Good." Her latest CD, What Love Will Do, is her first for the legendary blues label Alligator.

Magness' band in this performance includes Benny Yee on keyboards, organ and background vocals, Gary Davenport on bass, Tom Fillman on drums and Zach Zunis on guitar. Mountain Stage pianist Bob Thompson follows with his original composition, "Promised Land."

This story originally ran Oct. 28, 2008.



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