Oklahoma bluesman Watermelon Slim could easily have gotten away with nicknaming himself Mush Mouth Slim if he'd wanted to. But before you dismiss as mere shtick Slim's 10-gallon-hatted, cotton-mouthed persona and checkered, stranger-than-fiction past, understand that he and his band play some of the most searing blues on the planet. Blues in the 21st century just isn't supposed to sound this hot or this real. And when Slim (a Vietnam vet) lays into a slide or harmonica solo in between lambasting the Iraq war, watch your drinks to make sure they're not boiling. This is easily one of New Year's Eve's best bets.