"Deep, contemporary Chicago blues… razor-sharp guitar and compelling, forceful singing"
"Cannon is at the front rank of Chicago bluesmen. He creates wide-screen modern arrangements for wry, thoughtful songs, molding a sound that’s both tempestuous and scrupulously controlled."
–MOJO "Toronzo Cannon is a beast. He lights up the room."
--Gary Clark, Jr.
On Tuesday, August 13, Chicago's own ambassador of the blues, Toronzo Cannon, released The Chicago Way, the first single (digital only) from his second Alligator CD, The Preacher, The Politician Or The Pimp. The full album will be out on Friday, September 20, 2019. With this release, the songwriter, guitarist, vocalist and Chicago Transit Authority bus driver continues to blaze his own visionary blues trail, fusing his original, keenly-detailed tales of everyday life withhis fiery guitar playing. Blues Music Magazine says, "Cannon has all the fire and spontaneity of the Chicago legends. His songwriting is a timely and original look at the world he sees by day on a bus and in blues clubs by night, and his assertive voice is the perfect vehicle to deliver the message."
The Preacher, The Politician Or The Pimp features twelve Cannon originals, ranging from wryly sung, slice-of-life songs flavored with humor to burning social commentary. His broad-shouldered blues guitar work echoes the sounds of the city. His fervent vocals are filled with personality. His original songs are inspired by his deep Chicago roots, the wisdom of his grandparents and his years of observing the public while driving a bus. “It’s not about the solos,” Cannon says, “It’s about the songs. People get used to everyday life, so it’s easy to miss the things around them. I write about those things. I know the problems of Chicago, the hardship. But I love and respect the city. I'm proud to be carrying the Chicago blues tradition forward and honoring those blues giants who came here from the south and created the city's blues sound.”
With The Preacher, The Politician Or The Pimp, Toronzo Cannon continues to deliver his messages loud and clear. With his distinctive original songs, soulful vocals and guitar mastery, Cannon has grown from being a local attraction to become a world-renowned ambassador for Chicago blues. PBS Television’s Chicago Tonight says, "Cannon is just your typical CTA bus driver who moonlights as a sought-after Chicago blues musician. As a guitarist, singer and songwriter, he drives the sound of Chicago blues from the city to blues clubs and festivals around the world.”