Saturday, April 25, 2015

West Coast music photos

Here is the final batch of music photos from my US trip, taking in some of the excellent places we went to in Los Angeles and San Francisco.
We visited several blues venues in LA, thanks to tips from local blues fan Allen 'Charmin' Larman, ranging from backyard juke joints to established clubs. First, here are a couple from Bell's Blues Workshop, which is based in the garage of Franklin Bell in south LA. This is the house band.
Featured singers included Broadway, who played with Georgie Fame's band when he was based in the UK as a GI in the early sixties.
Also singing at Bell's was Mississippi Bert.
We went on to the Menlo Club where another fine band backed a number of singers, including the excellent 'Sir' Stan Griggs.
Another star at the Menlo was Jackie Jackson.
Also putting on a great soul act was Gary 'Dap' Gibson.
The third club we visited was the Pure Pleasure Club, which was packed. The host there was soul/blues singer Darryl 'Duffy' Glenn.
Another popular singer there is Louisiana born Bobby Love.
Another great blues singer was James Miller.
It was a treat to see Walter Saulsberry, a member of The Penguins for over 40 years, sing Earth Angel.
On to San Francisco now where we caught up with soul man Freddie Hughes doing his regular spot at the Royal Cuckoo Lounge, backed by Chris Burns on Hammond. Freddie's biggest hit was Send My Baby Back from 1968.
Here's one of me with Freddie.
Our last gig in San Francisco was at the Chapel, a former church, where we saw the return of the Flamin' Groovies with original member Cyril Jordan. Here are a few photos.
The support act at the gig was San Francisco folk/rock recording artists Kelley Stoltz.

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Taste of southern soul in Las Vegas

There's more to Las Vegas than gambling and flashy shows on the Strip. There is also a thriving soul and blues scene, although it seems that not many visitors get to experience it. On the Monday following Viva Las Vegas we went to two clubs where southern soul and blues was definitely the order of the day, and saw some great talent. Here are a few photos from the City Lights club. Thanks to Noah Schaffer for giving us the info.
Regular act at the club is Bobby Jones, who sings very much in the style of B B King. He was celebrating 55 years in the music business and there were several guest singers in the house.
The most impressive of these was Monique Brewster, who has a brilliant soul voice and is an exciting performer.
Also excellent was Patrice Moncel, a cousin of Tyrone Davis.
Another impressive blues singer at the club was Lady Brandy.
This is Marion Williams, who has a really powerful voice.
Very much in the James Brown mould - and very impressive - this is Willie Ray.
Here are a couple of me with some of the artists.On the left (top photo) is legendary blues piano player Leon Blue.
After the City Lights we went on to the CEO Hookah Lounge where Walter Waiters, cousin of Mel Waiters, was performing a solo spot with just a keyboard and backing tape - and doing it well.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Viva Las Vegas photos - days 3 & 4

Here are a batch of photos from days three and four of the Viva Las Vegas festival.
First, the great Dion, who put on a truly fantastic set at the VLV Car Show.
Here's what some doowop fans thought of it.
Also performing at the car show were 60s garage band The Sonics.
Making their debut at VLV were UK family band Kitty, Daisy and Lewis. This is Kitty.
This is the trumpet player with the band, Eddie Tan Tan Thornton.
A surprise hit at the Car Show were the Bop Hounds from Brazil.
Three original rockabilly artists performed on the Saturday night. Here is Huelyn Duvall.
This is Ray Campi, who celebrated his 81st birthday this week.
And here is Joe Clay.
One of the lesser known names making a good impression were Little Lesley and the Bloodshots.
Final act of the weekend was a feast of doowop with three of the all time greats: Eugene Pitt of the Jive Five, Bobby Lewis and Herb Cox of the Cleftones.
Here they are all together.

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Viva Las Vegas - days 1 and 2

I'm back from my US trip at last, so here is the first batch of photos. All of these were taken during the first two days of the marvellous Viva Las Vegas rockabilly festival.
Here, from day one, are the Hi-Tones.
This is Lil Mo, who performed with the Unholy Four.
These are the Stardust Ramblers.
Here are the Go-Getters.
From day two, here are some of dynamic performer Bobby Brooks Wilson.
He was joined on stage by former lead singer of the Platters during their sixties soul years, Sonny Turner.
This is the Johnny Cash styled Johnny Deadly Trio.
Buzz and the Flyers.
This is Aileen Quinn and the Leaping Lizards.
Here is Jai Malano, formerly of the Royal Rhythmaires.
Here are the Chop Tops, with special guest Mario Valens, brother of Ritchie Valens.
Finally, in this batch of photos, here is Nico Duportal.