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Bluesman Robert Cray

Purists sometimes criticize Cray's brand of the blues as "too commercialized." His fans say it's fresh and contemporary approach. KCUR's Susan Wilson asked Robert Cray about that recently, when he was in town for the Rhythm and Ribs festival.

By Susan B. Wilson


Kansas City, MO – Ever since the album Strong Persuader went double platinum in 1986, Robert Cray has continued to make his mark on the blues scene. Cray interprets the blues with a soulful, soaring tenor and stirring Fender Stratocaster guitar licks. His lyrics go well beyond the genre's typical stories that focus on hard luck and cheating women. Instead, they explore a complex range of human experience and emotion.

A native of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Susan admits that her “first love” was radio, being an avid listener since childhood. However, she spent much of her career in mental health, healthcare administration, and sports psychology (Susan holds a PhD in clinical psychology from the University of Pittsburgh in Pittsburgh Pennsylvania and an MBA from the Bloch School of Business at UMKC.) In the meantime, Wilson satisfied her journalistic cravings by doing public speaking, providing “expert” interviews for local television, and being a guest commentator/contributor to KPRS’s morning drive time show and the teen talk show “Generation Rap.”
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