My review in FATEA digital magazine



 

Paul Jones show on BBC Radio 2
Episode:- Blues Stew 9th Jan 2017



 

BBC Radio Merseyside
Episode:- Folkscene 8th Jan 2017



 

Review of SAID AND DONE in
"BLUES MATTERS" magazine
Issue 93 December-January 2017


"With a musical career spanning fifty years Mersey bluesman Raphael Callaghan has decided to celebrate in style with his first solo album...
... This is a solo blues anthology pure acoustic, but still hints of wonderful rasping harmonica playing. His influences are varied and unashamedly eclectic, paying tribute to the greats like his arrangement of Skip's Kokomo Blues full of shrilling hollering pitch perfect vocals and expert guitar picking, a theme throughout this release.
Keep Calm And Carry On opens things with a steady rhythm. He has a melodic tone to his tenor focussed vocals which fuses well when backing this with harmonica on the haunting Living Blues. There is a gospel infusion on the strutting Don't Let The Devil Drive. Standout track is Jessie Mae, a tribute to the Mississippi hill country blues guitarist, great interpretation of the genre. He has a light guitar picking technique which complements his uncompromising vernacular vocals on the echoing Think I Hear The Train.

A joy to listen to, he has a unique style and approach to the music, honest and true.
Meaningful blues at its best."


 

Think I Hear The Train, a track from my CD Said And Done.
The video was filmed on location at Conwy station, North Wales



 

ACOUSTIC magazine, January 2017 issue, CD reviews


Perseverance is a useful quality on the blues road, and judging by his impressive track record - having shared stages with everyone from Bonnie Raitt to Alexis Korner - Raphael Callaghan's been around the block more than most. His tasteful playing and singing suggests the laid back school of Jansch/Renbourn, and like them, the emphasis is on melody and the song. Highlights include the moving tribute to the late Jessie Mae Hemphill, 'Jessie Mae ('Til The Sun Is Gone)', the lilting 'Silk For Skin' and his solo tour de force 'Too Much Rain, Too Much Water.' A great album from an immensely talented home-grown blues king. (Review by Julian Piper)


 

BLUES & RHYTHM, Christmas 2016 issue, CD reviews (extract)


This is Raphael's first album completely under his own name . . . he has been around on the British blues scene since the '60s and has albums recorded in numerous combinations and under different names, most recently as Blue C back in 2000 (and reviewed in B&R 157) . . . Raphael is no copyist . . . he works here mostly as a solo artist (vocals, guitar and/or harmonica) . . . good songs and excellent presentation mark a fine, long-overdue return to disc for this U.K. blues veteran. (Review by Norman Darwen)


 

Folk North West, Winter 2016/2017, CD reviews (extract)


This CD flows effortlessly from track to track with an assurance that only someone on top of their game can produce. Here, style allied to substance is a real winner. As a musician he has few peers be it on guitar or harmonica as his roll call of those he has been invited to play with attests. I've known Raphael for over 40 years and I'm so happy to have been able to offer encouragement in those formative days and to hear this landmark solo album. Whether you are a blues fan or not, your life will be enriched by listening to this music genre performed in such a robust and stylish manner. (Review by David Jones)


 

Blues In Britain magazine, December 2016, CD reviews (extract)


Acoustic blues has a simplicity that Raphael Callaghan captures when all is Said And Done. On his first solo release, the Liverpudlian uses all his skills as vocalist, harmonica and slide player. The real test for an acoustic player is the songs - they need a story. This is blues played in Britain steeped in Mississippi given a freshness of touch. 'Too Much Rain, Too Much Water' has the blues feel that fits into any decade, with Raphael's vocals simple and stripped back. The lyrics work well when it is not a narrative, where things are left unsaid through imagination and innuendo. An album for lovers of acoustic blues. (Review by Liz Aiken)


 

BLUESNEWS magazine (Norway) December 2016


Raphael Callaghan has been a feature on the U.K. blues scene since the '60s with a recording history going back to that decade, though much of it has not been under his own name.Said And Done (Blue Cee BCR 67) is actually the first to appear as 'Raphael Callaghan' and it is worth the wait, a collection of mainly original solo blues recordings (vocal and guitar and/or harmonica) that is well worth a listen. (www.raphaelcallaghan.com)