During his relatively short career – compared to his peers BB King, Jeff Beck and Eric Clapton – Joe Bonamassa has become known for his relentless work ethic of touring and album releases and continues to keep blues music alive and safe for generations of musicians and fans to come.
On this, the fourth date of his UK tour, he kicked off the set with the swing blues of ‘See See Baby’ followed by ‘Never Make Your Move Too Soon’ and ‘Angel Of Mercy’ all played on his custom signature Gibson 335 before finally letting loose on his own material.
If you ever wondered if this sharp dressed New Yorker has what it takes you soon realise that here beats the heart of a true bluesman as he fires off the heavy riffs of ‘Oh Beautiful’.
‘Trouble Time’ from his 2014 ‘Different Shades of Blue’ features some great slide work and interplay with bass player Michael Rhodes before breaking into a rousing version of Freddie King’s ‘Goin’ Down’.
Finally taking a break he recounts his previous visits to the Nottingham area that included the 250 capacity Flowerpot in Derby and The Rescue Rooms, and thanks the 10000 capacity crowd this evening for their continued support.
After a few more tracks from ‘Different Shades of Blue’ he winds up the main set with the tracks that most have been waiting for. The applause rings out as soon as the first notes of ‘Sloe Gin’ echo round the arena as Joe puts his all into his haunting rendition of the Ezrin/Kamen song before his own ‘Ballad of John Henry’ finally brings the crowd to their feet in a standing ovation.
Joe appears back on stage and brings a wonderful night to an end as it started. with a nod to his peers and an encore of Jeff Beck’s ‘Spanish Boots’ leading in to Muddy Waters ‘All Aboard’.
Review and photos by Simon Dunkerley
Setlist: See See Baby, Never Make Your Move Too Soon, Angel Of Mercy, Hey Baby, Oh Beautiful, Happier Times, Trouble Town, Going Down, Gave Up Everything, Double Trouble, Breaking Up Somebody’s Home, Love Ain’t A Love Song, Sloe Gin, Ballad of John Henry. Encore: Spanish Boots, All Aboard
Gig review (Brighton, 30 October 2015)
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Pete Feenstra celebrated his 300th show in October 2019. Pete heads up a five-hour blues rock marathon when “Tuesday is Bluesday” from 19:00 GMT. Listen out also for his interview-based Feature show on Sundays (20:00 GMT)
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12:00-13:00 SIGN X Like A Fire (Pride & Joy Music)
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