Canadian blues guitarist Big Dave McLean finds the sweet spot brought to glorious life when gospel, rock and the blues incestuously interbreed. Born in 1951, he's a well-traveled troubadour and ambassador of rollicking, life-affirming, well-crafted music. His lyrics on "Life on the Road," which opens his 13-track CD, "Better The Devil You Know," pretty much says it all: "Another day, Another country road, Another town, Another late-night show, Another song, Another story told, I'm on the road … I'm living out the dream …" He also plays homage to his idol, Muddy Waters, with thumping – though less menacing -- renditions of "Deep Down in Florida" and "You Can't Lose What You Ain't Never Had." With his earnest, powerful voice, and backed by a full band, which includes Ann and Regina McCrary on spiritual-inflected background vocals, Big Dave seems to be enjoying the whole experience. He gets my vote for a potential house band on NPR's "A Prairie Home Companion." Big Dave pens a handful on tunes on this collection to go accompany some traditional selections. CD producer and quite fine electric guitarist Steve Dawson earns a couple songwriting credits as well. This CD is loaded with feel-good stuff, so crack open a cold one, or maybe two, and kick back, or kick it out, depending on your predilection. Big Dave's just good company. And how can you not like a guy whose first CD (in 1989) was titled "Muddy Waters for President"?