The Boneshaker's drummer couldn't make it - and at the eleventh hour, Barry Ellis (of 'Shanghai' fame) filled in, armed with his electric drum kit.
"Electric?" said the punters, "With a blues band? Nah!"
But after a strict sound check and many twiddlings of knobs and buttons - the electric sound of the drums was - well - ELECTRIC!
And, yeah, the kit looked a little strange on the stage, but it all fitted like a warm glove with the Boneshakers bluesy, rock-solid sound. Barry (below) kept his head down underneath a gleaming-white baseball cap (I think the whole audience have yet to see his face!) and made that drum-kit shake, rattle and roll through two amazing blues/rock sets.
|Barry - Where did you get that hat?|
The Boneshakers were explosive. They sizzled all night long. The atmosphere was absolutely electric!
|Gimme soma dem blues notes, man|
Russ played his Fender Telecaster guitar with a lightning storm of mean blues riffs and licks, roaring and growling vocals that could make Gary Moore eat his heart out, through numbers like 'Walking' and B. B. King's 'How Blue Can You Get'.
Russ - Walkin'
Dave - Going Down
Dave, (above right) unassuming and fixed to the spot, thundered through numbers the likes of 'Going Down' and 'Messing with the Kid' with Rosco Beck-like aplomb. You could almost see the sparks fly as his fingers flew over his bass frets in a heart-stopping frenzy.
Ronnie - Long Gone
Ronnie (above left) made the crowd cheer, whoop and holler with a brilliant harp solo in the middle of a superb rendition of Kenny Wayne Shepherd's 'Long Gone'. The place went up in a blue light!
The second set saw two guest appearances on stage with the Boneshakers. Freddie and Stevie had both come along to see their good friends, the Boneshakers, play but they couldn't resist putting in an appearance with the lads on stage. They sparkled and dazzled, jamming with the band in unrehearsed splendour!
Freddie, who did vocals with the band, 'T T Blue' and now fronts 'Badger' (which, by the way, happens to be his second name) did his own fabulous version of 'Stormy Monday Blues'. The crowd gave him a fiery standing ovation.
And Stevie on the blues harp was scintillating as he dueted with Ronnie and played some solo stuff in the most sensational version of 'Hip Shaker' I've ever heard. The sound of two blues harps going at it like guns blazing at the Alamo, set the atmosphere alight.
CATCH VIDEO FOOTAGE OF THE DUELLING HARPS ON THE BONESHAKERS' PAGE
The crowd danced anywhere they could find a space, radiating heat and perspiration that could compare with the band's rivers of sweat quite favourably! At the end of the evening, the punters wanted more, more, more.
"I'm impressed," said one of the crowd.
"Loved 'em. I'll definitely catch their next gig," said another.
|Boogie on down|
It was a great night - a memorable night - a night that was so full of talent and flare, all it lacked was the firework display.
Barry said of his experience, playing drums for the first time with the Boneshakers, "By the time I got into the second set, it felt great." Well, it sounded great, Barry!
Philosophical Ronnie was heard to say, "A blues man never dies - he just doesn't wake up one morning!"
Russ said, "I agree with everything he says." (also philosophical? Or just couldn't be arsed!)
And Dave said, "Not a bad night, eh?" Well that was an understatement, Dave!
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TO YOU-TUBE VIDEO FOOTAGE OF
ANNIE McCARTHY'S BAR
STORMY MONDAY BLUES with Freddie
SHAKE YOUR HIPS with Stevie