An Evening of Hard-Driving Blues
I saw an unexpectedly excellent blues show at Johnny D’s on Friday night! If I’d been familiar with all the acts, I would not have been as surprised.
Of course I am familiar with Charles Neville, saxophonist for The Neville Brothers. I love their music and their spirit, together and separately (the band as it existed for many years is no longer). I was not familiar with Jeff Pitchell & Texas Flood, other than by name and reputation.
Jeff Pitchell & Texas Flood took the stage and performed a few numbers before Charles joined them. Jeff is a talented blues guitarist who knows how to work a crowd. He did a walkabout through the audience early in the set – I always enjoy seeing that (and marveled at him playing right next to me with the sound coming from the stage).
Texas Flood consists of a drummer, bass player and keys, and they are all good musicians. The very talented drummer – Ephraim Lowell, an alumnus of Roomful of Blues – looks like a grown-up version of Alexander Gould, the actor who played Shane Botwin on Weeds.
Charles took the stage with them after about 15-20 minutes. I’m not sure that the mix was quite right because it seemed that the guitars overwhelmed his saxophone. Still, he’s such a wonderful musician and genuinely nice person that I was happy to be in his presence. And his smile is so engaging!
Charles also sang a bit which thrilled me because I love his voice. He even played some cowbell!
Ronnie Earl was in the audience and he came to the stage and played guitar with them for about half the set. This was the third time I’ve seen Ronnie sit in with a band in the past seven months. That’s something I feel privileged to experience because he’s a great talent.
A local blues singer, Diane Blue, was also in the audience and came to the stage to sing a few songs and play harmonica with them. I knew her name but had never seen her perform and she’s terrific. I loved her voice and look forward to seeing her again in her own show.
Opening the show was Dave Keller, a blues singer-songwriter. I liked his songs and his banter and would be interested in seeing him with his band as well.
This was the first of two shows of the night, and I’m glad the more rockin’ show was first!
Posted on January 28, 2014, in concert reviews, music, Uncategorized and tagged boston, Charles Neville, concert review, Dave Keller, Diane Blue, Jeff Pitchell, Jeff Pitchell & Texas Flood, Johnny D's, music, Ronnie Earl. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.
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