Wizz Jones at the Hoy at Anchor Folk Club
Blues, rock and roll, soul, fifties and sixties pop, cajun, jazz, folk, vinyl records, LPs, EPs, singles, New Orleans, Memphis, UK rock, nostalgia, girl groups, ska, rocksteady.
After the excellence of the Friday night's music at the Porretta Soul Festival, the third night, Saturday, proved to be a hit and miss affair, with rather more miss than hit. It started badly with a Spanish band from the Canary Isles called the Sugar Hill Band who proved to be a holiday camp show band whose music bore little relation to soul. Despite a six piece horn section and 15 members in total their set failed to impress. Having said that they went down well with most of the crowd, many of whom it seemed were there for a good time, rather than good soul.
Day two of the Porretta Soul Festival lived up to expectations with five excellent male singers, backed by bands that more than did them justice. It was a pleasantly cool evening after a huge thunderstorm earlier in the day and the less than capacity audience were royally entertained, not least by Prince Phillip himself. But more about him later..
The Porretta Soul Festival - Europe's, if not the world's, best soul festival - has rolled round again and woken this sleepy Italian hill town from its slumbers once more. Now in its 28th year, the Thursday night here is usually an all Italian affair, with local bands taking the stage. But this year, after a performance by a band of smartly dressed Carabinieri, we were treated to a show by Japanese band Osaka Monaurail. Basically a tribute to the sounds of James Brown, they are an energetic 8 piece outfit with loads of musical talent, humour and well orchestrated routines, with a lead singer who can match James's stage craft. Numbers included Sex Machine, an Isaac Hayes tribute in the form of Walk On By, and a funky number called She's A Fruitbasket, which is one of their own. A fun way to kick off the festival.