Reviews, Articles & Interviews

Glide Magazine

"Live albums don't get any better than this. Bergson and Hooks are both clearly on the rise...Bergson and Hooks have become a blues-infused modern-day Sam and Dave, bringing a similar kind of gritty, rousing blues that is chill-inducing, whether vocally or via Bergson's stinging, piercing solos (check out "Bitter Midnight")...Bergson's guitar lines echo two of his heroes, Hubert Sumlin (with whom he performed in his later years) and Freddie King."

"Anyone who has ever seen a Bergson show knows what you can expect: authentic songs that are brought full of fire. Bergson, only armed with a Telecaster, Twin Reverb and a single pedal, shows that you don't need anything else. Well, a fantastic voice is nice too. And he has this too, just like Hooks."

"Bergson is playing a long way from home, but it will take admirers of theNewYork singer-guitarist-songwriter only seconds to recognize a characteristic groove and his voice's grainy snarl. His six-year collaborationwith vocalist Ellis Hooks now sounds as inevitable as grits and groceries (see track nine.)"

Soul Bag (FR)

"Far from blues-rock clichés and guitar demonstrations in vertiginous pyrotechnics, here are 12 live tracks as additional proof of the vitality and authenticity of a major artist on the NewYork scene. In perfect harmony with the splendid vocalist Ellis Hooks, guitarist-singer Chris Bergson is accompanied by a "French connection" of choice: Philippe Billoin (keyboards), Philippe Dandrimont (bass) and Patrick Machenaud (drums)...Superb!"

Blues Magazine (NL)
"The music of Chris Bergson and Ellis Hooks is genuine Delta soul blues...The soulful voice of Hooks is reminiscent of the great soul men like Sam Cooke and Otis [Redding], and together with Chris he turns it into a true party."

Rootsville (BE)
"Live in Normandy is a must-have for fans of Chris Bergson and Ellis Hooks, if onlyto be able to relive their indelible live concerts back home."

Concert Monkey (BE)

"Chris Bergson again shows his class as a guitarist, with handsome and very sensitive strings. Chris and Ellis also wrote a new song for this live album, '55 Miles From Bromley.' Vocally Ellis takes care of this powerful soulful song and evokes memories of soul legends such as Otis Redding and Wilson Pickett. With a fat slide riff on his tele, Chris Bergson starts '55 Miles From Bromley' and lets the bottleneck masterfully slide over the strings of his guitar neck."

Keys and Chords (BE)
"The Chris Bergson and Ellis Hooks duo prove here that they are festival headliners."

MOJO Magazine
Bitter Midnight ranked #3 Blues Album of 2017

MOJO Magazine
"Four Stars...With his sixth album, Bergson again proves himself an expert writer of blues short stories..."

Living Blues
"Throughout this expertly balanced mixture of blues, funk, R&B and soul, Bergson sings confidently through taut lyrics with more matured vocals since his extensive touring."

Elmore Magazine
"Chris has what most guitarists want most of all - feel. He plays concisely, economically, and with just the right dose of emotion without showboating... This will prove to be one of the best blues releases in 2017."

Jazzism Magazine (NL)
4.5 out of 5 stars

"He takes elements from the blues, soul and country canon that American music history is rich of, giving his own meaning to it. One time, the party sounds like Little Feat, other times like The Band or The Allman Brothers Band."

Gitaar Plus Magazine (NL)
Cover Feature & Interview, May 2017

Gitarist (NL)
Bitter Midnight is Gitarist's Album of the Month - March 2017

"As we've come to expect from Bergson, Bitter Midnight is full of tasty, intuitive guitar work and passionate vocals but besides that, the album's also a triumph for his qualities as a composer. An absolute must for fans of blues, soul and southern rock."

Soul Bag (FR)
Funk, wistful ballad, sparkling brass blues - he has the golden touch."

ABS Magazine (FR)
His impressive technical mastery of the guitar does not hide an obvious melodic signature and feeling."

Blues Magazine (NL)
"Bitter Midnight' is an excellent album and by far the best album of Chris Bergson. This album could well be the album that makes Chris Bergson known to the general public and allows for the really big breakthrough of this excellent guitarist, songwriter and singer."

Tahoe Onstage
"The Chris Bergson Band's Bitter Midnight proves it all album long with its funky, gritty, soulful, and city-chic feel...Bitter Midnight is the kind of shot in the arm the blues genre consistenly needs."

Lust For Life (NL)

"Bergson's guitar playing accommodates all colors of the rainbow."

Living Blues
"The album closes with Gowanus Heights, a flag-waver with descriptive lyrics and killer guitar solo, percolating rhythm section, and regal blasts from the horn section. Bergson and band sent the crowd home, satisfied and dancing on the streets of Manhattan."
"Authentic but not stifled by tradition...Bergson is the classic triple threat."

Hittin' the Note Magazine
"The Chris Bergson Band sets a bold new standard for roots music..."

Feeling Blues Magazine (FR)

Concert Review - Eden District Blues, Oraison, France
Michel Faton hails Bergson's "boundless stage presence of vitality","concise, subtle playing" and "the impeccable support of the musicians he meets every time he tours in Europe, among the best French musicians, suffice to say a bunch of essential talents of the French blues scene."

Tournon Reporter (FR)
Concert Review - Blues Station, Tournon d'Agenais, France
"This New Yorker has a monstrous talent, on guitar as vocals, but also for writing the music and lyrics. But what makes this artist is his show, the contrasts in moods/finesse. We go from delta blues to modern blues, soul funk, which is not displeasing to the public."

MOJO Magazine
Live at Jazz Standard named MOJO's #3 Blues Album of 2014

The Blues Music Magazine
"If it’s possible, guitar ace Chris Bergson just keeps getting better. He had some opportunities to play with and observe Hubert Sumlin before he passed two years ago, and his emulation of the legend’s minimalist style has never been more apparent than on his latest record. The CD also showcases Bergson’s vocal power, songwriting skills, and his ability to assemble a world-class band...If you don't know Bergson's music, you should."

Blues Blast Magazine
"Finding a talented guitarist that is also an effective leader, singer, and songwriter is not an easy task, which makes Chris Bergson a true find!...Even though the club is called Jazz Standard and Chris was appointed the U.S. Jazz Ambassador by the Kennedy Center, this show is nothing but killer funky blues."

The Blues Magazine (UK)
"Over the past decade, Chris Bergson has become one of the most interesting blues-inspired songwriters. He describes the streetscapes and nightscapes of city life, painting small, memorable pictures, a kind of Edward Hopper of the blues. Bergson doesn't do predictable, but there's a visible thread of blues awareness running through the fabric of everything he writes, sings and plays: he is a concise and subtle guitarist and tough, grainy singer."

MOJO Magazine - Blues Album of the Month, June 2014
Four Stars - another bulletin from the New York street poet with a blues soul...the music is as tight as a hangman's knot."

Elmore Magazine
"This recording captures the sheer exhilaration of one of the most talented bands playing today...From blazing rock to funk to soul to Delta blues and all that's in between."

iTunes Editors' Notes
"A fair number of hot shot guitarists can lay down licks with presence and panache, but that number shrinks drastically when you tally the ones who are also sharp-shooting singer/songwriters. That’s what makes Chris Bergson an unusual triple threat and this live recording shines a spotlight on the strength of his material as well as the alternately simmering and fiery feel that he and his band serve up in a club setting."

"New Yorker Chris Bergson has a mountain of talent with his tight guitar, a
smoky baritone... and reflective songwriting skills."

Blues in the Northwest (UK)

"This fine writer, singer and guitarist is pretty hard to 'pigeon hole', with his superb music covering blues, jazz, soul and classic rock flavours - the latter maybe from playing with a legend like the late Levon Helm from The Band.....highly recommended."
"Chris Bergson is a modern-day blues baron."

Wasser-Prawda (Germany)
"Chris Bergson is not only one of the great guitarists, the man can really sing well - giving him a welcome difference to some other guitar gods."

Selected Press

Reading Eagle
Chris Bergson Band at Berks Bandshell Concert Series
"Bergson's throaty voice was reminiscent of Ray Charles or Stevie Ray Vaughan. His guitar tone was clean and full, his playing crisp yet energetic. His hair flopped all over the place while he wrung notes from his ax, and the back of his shirt was drenched by the fourth song."

The Saratogian
Chris Bergson Band performs at the Saratoga Jazz Festival
"You can hear Sumlin's influence in Bergson's playing. And he sounds like he's channeling Helm in some of his vocals."

Time Out New York
Chris Bergson Band with Horns at Jazz Standard

ROLL Magazine
In-depth profile discussing Chris' early influences, the start of the Chris Bergson Band, and playing with heroes Levon Helm and Hubert Sumlin.

MOJO Magazine
Imitate the Sun is MOJO's #2 Blues Album of 2011

All Music Guide
"An invigorating and challenging album that indicates a bright future for this talented musician who has corralled his diverse influences to create an identifiable sound."

Elmore Magazine
Chris Bergson has a reputation as a New York guitar ace, but he is also a clever songwriter who draws inspiration from many sources."

La Hora Del Blues (Barcelona)
Interview with Chris talking about the recording of Imitate the Sun, playing with heroes Levon Helm and Hubert Sumlin and plans for the future.

Upon first hearing guitar man Chris Bergson and his gravely southern drawl, which is a combination of Levon Helm and Gregg Allman, you can hardly believe this guy is from New York City. Imitate the Sun displays an artist dedicated to bringing blues and classic R&B into the future while honoring the past."
"Ten helpings of satisfying blue-eyed soul, sad bastard storytelling, and tasty ensemble textures - where Bergson's voice, then guitar, prove to be both wise leaders, and worthy centers of attention...Bergson's lower-pitched tenor tends to emphasize taste and ornament over range, and his semi-hollow Gibson tones put him between the late Little Milton and Warren Haynes's current sound du jour..."

Blues Revue
Chris Bergson writes memorable songs, sings them with passion, and plays such a mean guitar that the great Hubert Sumlin has been known to sit in at his gigs. Once again he has gathered the best musicians in New York State to assist, the funky rhythm section of Matt Clohesy on bass and Tony Leone on drums, keyboard master Bruce Katz and cool Jay Collins on sax, and each of them contributes moments of brilliance."

"The ambience of Chris Bergson's music is an Edward Hopper world of suspicion and solitude, dusk-time avenues and dimly lit bars...This is the terrain of Tom Waits and Lou Reed, and Bergson has something of each in his gruff, laconic delivery, but his sound is intransigently his own."

Hittin' the Note
"Smoky flavors wafting from New York City up to the Catskill Mountains infiltrate the unfussy music of the Chris Bergson Band. Bergson's a spry, supple guitarist with an earthy singing voice and a blues-grounded heart...Keep a sharp eye on this guy."

Elmore Magazine Live Review
"From his first masterful guitar solo on "Goin' Home", he showed total command of his instrument...His vocals were expressive and confident."

Blues Blast Magazine

"...An original and outstanding approach."

Blues in the Northwest (UK)

"Bergson is the real deal...reminiscent of The Band at their best...high octane funk...wonderful stuff indeed!"

ROLL Magazine
"Keef enthusiasts might consider giving Chris Bergson Band a listen. Bergson's latest album combines all the rock, blues, and soul influences Richards has always worn on his sleeve, with subtle traces of what might have been had Gram Parsons stuck around a little longer...Imitate the Sun manages to sound classic without being a pastiche of its influences."

Leicester Bangs (UK)

"No-one else making music in the modern world invokes the spirit of The Band like he does... 'Hello Bertha' brings on the brass for a solid soul strut underpinning one of his strongest compositions so far. 'Laying it Down in White' is simply the most beautiful ballad you'll hear this year...It's an absolute joy to listen to and reveals more and more depth with repeated playing...The most vital album of 2011 so far."

Blues in Britain
"Bergson is a great singer, and the band's sound is perfectly rounded out by the three man horns and Bruce Katz's keyboards..."Hello Bertha" opens like an old soul classic."

Rock 'N' Reel (UK)
It is unusual to hear a man, never mind a young guitarist, cover a Bessie Smith song these days, but Chris does full justice to ‘You’ve Been A Good Old Wagon’, with its wasted vocal and Hawaiian tinged guitar break."

Luxury Experience
"Pure blues genius."

Nashville Blues Society Blog
"Bergson has all the tools to succeed in the blues world - incredible chops, a great vocal delivery, and savvy, topical songwriting ideas that fuse the sounds of the Delta with today's contemporary settings."

"Bergson excels at writing songs, his vocals convey warmth and sincerity, and he is a thoughtful, imaginative guitarist who plays with the right mix of fire and taste."

Blues Bytes
"Blessed with an expressive vocal style, impressive guitar chops, and a talent for songwriting that encompasses blues, folk, and pop, Bergson is rightly considered to be an artist of the future in the blues."

Barrelhouse Blues
"A well crafted recording by a master craftsman."

Rock Over America
"it isn't often that a new to me artist blows me away, but Chris Bergson did just that with the soon to be released Imitate the Sun."

All Music Guide
"One of the most inventive songwriters in modern blues music."

Barrelhouse Blues
"He is a great songwriter. He's a better singer. And his guitar work will do just what it's supposed to do; knock you out."

"FALL CHANGES named MOJO's #1 Blues Album of 2008!"

" * * * * ...these guys could strip down the engine of a soulbluesmobile and put it back together blindfold."

Time Out London

"Recommended...Bergson's impressive CV includes work with Norah Jones and Annie Ross."

Poughkeepsie Journal

"Bergson plays bare-knuckle blues and dishes out heaping ladles of soul stew. He sings with the voice of a weathered bluesman who is down on his luck, if not down for the count, but never too sad to sing."

Blues Revue
"It takes a confident musician to pack his band with some of the hottest players in New York City, but singer/songwriter/guitarist Chris Bergson is equal to the company he keeps."

ROLL Magazine
"Chris Bergson plays the kind of guitar you can build a house's B.B. meets Steve Cropper meets John Scofield."

Living Blues
"Chris Bergson is a serious talent...both jazzy and bluesy with a slight dash of rock and massive amounts of melody, Fall Changes is a treat."

Blues Revue

"Bergson's stirring voice and glorious guitar command immediate attention."


"Fresh and inventive...a tour de force."

"Gut-busting, horn-bedecked NY blues."

Leicester Bangs
"This magnificent collection by Chris Bergson, recorded at Levon Helmís Woodstock studios, follows The Band in drawing intuitively and seamlessly from blues, country, folk, funk, soul and jazz. Bergson has the kind of voice that can be sepia-tinted, whisky soaked or nicotine stained to fit the requisite style and mood, standing alongside Gregg Allman, Dr. John, Van Morrison and Danko / Helm."
"Allman Associates to Join Chris Bergson"

Vermont Rutland Herald
"...a quintet of consummate blues, country, rock and jazz musicians that in only a few years has earned high praise from colleagues, critics and fans alike."

Blues in the Northwest
"One of the best things I have heard this year...a sound rooted in blues - but diverse enough to have jazzy and classic rock leanings."

Blues Matters
"Tremendous! Fall Changes showcases the Chris Bergson Band's personal blend of contemporary Americana, highlighting Bergson's crafted writing, some soulful vocals and the first class musicianship of a class band. "

The Band Website
"Rootsy and funky...brilliant playing from the Chris Bergson Band...highly recommended. "

"A small masterwork...a candidate for year's best."
"...seriously street-smart songwriting and Allman-esque vocal prowess..."

Old Blue Bus
"...a dynamic, masterful guitar player... one of the most impressive new blues releases Iíve heard in years."

Voodoo Jive
"This cat has an amazing voice and is smokin' on the blues/rock guitar. "

Alt Country Forum (Netherlands)

Gitarist (Holland)

Twoj Blues (Poland)

Blues (Netherlands)

Music in (Belgium)

Alt (Netherlands)

Sound (Croatia)

Bluesrockpagina (Netherlands)

Rootstime (Belgium)

Blues News (Norway)

Block (The Dutch Blues Magazine)

Gitarist (Holland)

Jazz Improv NY
" inventive and personal take on the rich legacy of American roots music...honest storytelling and soulful vocals."

Luxury Experience
"...extraordinary guitar work...deep bluesy vocals. "

Guitar One
"Versatile, inspired playing, with vocals to match."

Boston Phoenix
"NYC singer/guitarist Chris Bergson's jazz-inflected take on the blues marks this young artist as a player who may just extend the genre's shelf life."

Blues Revue
"...Deep country soul. "

Blues in Britain Magazine
"Outstanding. Deeply soulful vocals and dynamic fretwork."

"If you like the music of Coltrane, Muddy Waters and The Band, you will definitely like the Chris Bergson Band...Bergson's guitar work is magnificent and his voice is aged and full of soul."

Living Blues
"Chris Bergson has indulged his fondness for blues and other roots music..."

All About Jazz
"Funk, soul, blues, folk and delectable jazz come together seamlessly."

Blues Matters
"Perfect late night listening."
"...a deeper understanding of country blues ...a six string wizard."

Jazz Hot
"His playing of "Three Sisters" on acoustic guitar makes one wonder whether Bergson himself doesn't come from deep in the Mississippi delta."

Jazz Guitar.Be (Belgium)
"Interview - Chris talks about his influences."

Blues in the Northwest
"Possibly the album's standout track is the medley of ìThree Sisters/Death Letterî - with Bergson doffing his cap to the legendary bluesman Skip James, on a powerful, acoustic solo performance"

Just Jazz Guitar
"absolutely breathtaking. "

Big City Blues Magazine

Luxury Experience
"..his arrangements layer the soulful commanding sound of his voice, his magnificent bluesy guitar playing, with the jazzy tenor sax and the rhythms of the bass and drums."

Luxury Experience
"...the type of deep, throaty, sexy voice that makes you want to curl up and wrap yourself around it on a cold winter night." (A norwegian website)

All About Jazz

Blues in the Northwest
"...very tasteful guitar work and wonderful, rich vocals."

Village Voice
"...that's why I'm recommending the limber and swinging string player Bergson. Get your groove on. "

All About Jazz

Cadence Magazine

Jazz Improv Magazine

Just Jazz Guitar Magazine

All Music Guide

Jazz Times
"gorgeously spacious playing...articulate, bluesy ideas...from a guitarist worth keeping an eye on. "

20th Century Guitar Magazine
"...holds their own amongst works by modern masters like Jobim, Monk and Bud Powell."

All Music Guide

Cadence Magazine

Roots Music Report
"Five Stars!"