Back in the early sixties bands were bands. There were out front stars of bands having their own followings. Jeff Beck certainly had his as his solo career began and since then he has never looked back. However Jeff has now committed two years to putting out a proper band Lp with his current members and massively supporting it with a world tour. So the spotlight (and pressure lol) is not only on him but the collective sound that comes forth with all of its’ individual components and compositions. To emphasize that point the amazing Jeff Beck Band consisting of Jonathan Joseph on drums and percussion, Rhonda Smith on bass, stand up bass and vocals and Nicolas Meier on guitar, midi guitar (and pipes) is doing a lion’s share of the current recording live like the old days. That should put the R back in rock n roll and the L back in live as what is recorded will have a head start on reproducing in live show format allowing an even greater window of time and effort to elegantly morph the new material into the dynamics of a brand new self- stamped band show for 2014 and 2015. This is how the Yardbirds, Rolling Stones, and all the great bands of the sixties rolled it out.
In conjunction with it there were organized fan clubs that had some albeit many times tacit interaction with the artists, their personal assistants and/or managers, and the pr/record companies all working together to promote the now, the buzz, and fuel the excitement of which each show goer and record buyer could trade stories through phone calls and letters in the mail. In the now, that exchange of information is to the second through Facebook, Twitter, websites, email and other social media.
Where does that leave this site? In our opinion the greatest rock guitarist of all time, Jeff Beck, the body of past work and reference citing to others, is in of itself a lasting group of images, sounds, and descriptions that can be utilized in what is inevitable, even for reluctant artists like Jeff...archival history. Motown tapes, finished blues tracks originally slated for Rod Stewart that could have spine tingling treatments from both male and female crooners sympathetic to Jeff Beck’s guitar etc etc etc. Are you listening Rhino Records, whose original claim to fame you were of getting artists to delve into the belly of those archival vaults? Sure we have some modern click links to all the now stuff which is great. We’ve even done a fairly unique 2013 tour project which opens our new JBB#19...tour reports from the press and the fans and a 'Virtual Set List' YouTube jukebox of the Jeff Beck Band. However just like fan clubs did years ago and still do today, we recognize the value for future generations of artist history. So from www.ainian.com count on lots more stuff from the past, intermittent ramblings about the present, and retro back to the future as we celebrate the life, music and times of all that is...Jeff Beck.
Opening night of the Jeff Beck/Brian Wilson tour! Bill and I got to the Hard Rock Casino in Holywood FL around 4PM where we had a prearranged meeting with drummer Jonathan Joseph after sound check. Nicolas Meier walked out the security gate first and we greeted him. What a warm wonderful human being with a lot of energy and positive vibrations. Jonathan came out next with a big smile and we headed off to Murphy’s Irish Pub around the mall block outside the Hard Rock Live. As we were leaving I saw the Federal Express trucks arrive with a couple of pallets of boxes. I knew just what was inside of them……the tour programs! Jeff had been looking for photo credits for a couple of his pics inside the program and the programs just got printed in time with not a second to spare!! of course our friend Robert Knight had a couple of classics of Jeff with the red street rod taken in the 80’s.
Jonathan sat down with Bill and I and were joined by a Spanish lady (well familiar with Jeff...the mother of my son) who exclaimed to Jonathan that he only looked in his thirties after we had joked about his birthday actually being advertised a month too early lol. Jonathan loved that comment and swooped her up with a big hug and said “I like you” lol. We also talked about the new material and what had been advertised by PR for the tour ie Yardbirds and the new Jeff/Brian Wilson song “Metropolis” parts of which were played on the Paul and Young Ron Big 105.9 interview show a few weeks ago. Jonathan was perplexed as was I explained that we knew that wasn’t happening to which he heartily agreed. He did say that they would play “Don’t Know” the beautiful melodic Brain Wilson tune from Pet Sounds they did in rehearsals that I saw them do a couple of days before (turns out they did play it the first evening and not for the whole rest of the tour!) and a couple of other new tunes they had practiced probably later in the tour...one of which did get played later on the tour as Lizzie Ball urged Jeff to let them do Stevie Wonder’s haunting classic “ They Won’t Go Where I Go”. As everyone sipped on their drinks and me with my black coffee strong enough to make a spoon stand up, I caught sight of Ron Brewer from the Paul and Young Ron show pass by with his son so I also called out to them and introduced myself. Got a big thank you from Ron for getting them the interview (available by click elsewhere in What’s New 2013 Link here on the site) with Jeff and then they were off to the VIP sound check.
We said goodbye to Jonathan and wished him the best of opening nights. At that point my old friend from the Bahamas, R E Barnes, whose pics and lifetime fan story appear earlier in this Issue 18, joined all of us and we were off to Hooters to eat where we were met with the last of our entourage for the evening, my son Rich. After eating we got our tix and after show passes and were set for opening night!
The well polished Brian Wilson took to the stage at 7:30 promptly for an hour of well played/harmonized combination of Brian Wilson originals, Beach Boy classics, and a couple of great covers one in particular Eddie Cochran's 'Summertime Blues' sung and feature played by guitarists David Marks. Al Jardine took over the first show portion Master of Ceremonies duties and told the crowd they would get a lot of different rock n roll this evening and to hang on for the great guitarist Jeff Beck and his band. Brian sang lead on a couple of numbers and the set was also highlighted by a sterling rendition of 'Sail On Sailor' by guest-Blondie Chaplin.
Without further fanfare let me just say that it was my distinct honor along with being associated with my partner Bill and Sid Johnson of the JBGG blog to have been able to see and hear the fruition of frantic weeks of actually being able to help out ticket sales. Brian Wilson’s people had come to us only because they realized Jeff had no current mgt., no website, no active FaceBook, No active Twitter, nada zip...all that was being finalized and fortunately by the time the tour started but prior to opening night it was just us and some local markets press in different cities to which Jeff had agreed to a limited amount. Bill got the big Deco Drive TV interview, I got the Paul and Young Ron interview, and Sid worked to get all the social media and buzz going with help from blog constituents most notably Ms. Sheila Melms of Detroit. All venues were picking up those last minute ticket sales necessary to have close to sold out crowds.
Above is a pic of Jeff's rig. The white Strat there isn't his, it's actually Al Jardin's. The amps...Marshall DSL100, Marshall handwired 20 watt 2061 (for backup only) with 1960B cabinets and a Fender Vibro King. These amps as you can see are mic'd...later on in the tour, the cabinets on the stage were not mic'd, instead the heads on stage fed cabinets facing backward behind the drum riser that were mic'd. For an excellent video on Jeff's rig check out premierguitar.com's 'rig rundown'; http://www.premierguitar.com/articles/19950-rig-rundown-jeff-beck. And, as we learn for the video, Jeff used the Vibro King 70% of the time. For pedals....Hughs & Kettner Rotosphere, Klon Centaur and the Snarling Dog Whine-O-Wah. On top of the DSL100 head is a Lexicon digital delay.
Followed by a short intermission, the Jeff Beck Band took their positions with Rhonda and Jonathan on the risers and left to right Lizzie and Nicolas. Jeff walked on and the place went nuts. Always genuinely amazed that people still appreciate him, Jeff acknowledged the crowd and proceeded in rapid fire to go through the first three rocking fusion numbers from the set list. From the jazzy melodic first opening blast flurry of “Eternity’s Breath” the audience knew that this was Jeff Beck and his band giving no quarter. Loud exaltation screeches from the segued Stratus gave way to Jan Hammer penned “Even Odds” from the ‘98 tour and Who Else days. Jeff’s mix was perfect in the house anyways and spared no lick to ratchet John “Mahavishnu” McLaughlin's “You Know You Know” where different band members received a standing ovation for their solo with Jeff acknowledging each of them. Nicolas Meier has a unique acoustical and midi tone and he composes a nifty little segue into an all instrumental 'Little Wing' which brought everyone in the house to their knees... Lizzie Ball on many numbers offered up a counter alto harmony to Jeff's tenor which gave them added depth and feel. The absolute highlight of the first part of Jeff s show besides the aforementioned “You Know You Know” was the new song (played once in Iceland) “Yemin”, the Nicolas Meier penned Turkish flavored mid tempo tune of which Nicolas started out with a Turkish flair on electrified acoustic, Jeff Beck soared up the Strat neck with the absolute wonderfully sickest sounds and Lizzie tore into the violin with emotion and flair. You can always tell Jeff is always searching for new material and loves this type stuff. Right before the Brian Wilson band came up to join Jeff he tore into 'Big Block' which tied in the theme of American Surf and Sixties British rock.......love of Hot Rods. Even the tour program, with a couple of great photos from our friend Robert Knight, had a hot rod theme...Anyways, the stage giant video screen lit up with a video collage of Jeff s castle, horse stable turned Hot Rod garage, and shots of both Jeff working on cars and driving them!.....all the while riffing on 'Big Block'....This was the apex of the evening as the Brian Wilson Band came back on and in one form or another lent vocals to Brian s “Surf's Up”, Jeff's 'Brush With The Blues' where Jeff was really pushing the limits and even muttered “I can do better than that”, and a brilliant one off take on Brian Wilson’s "Don t Talk" from Pet Sounds. It turns out this would be the only time on the tour that this was played although they did it (in front of me at rehearsals) and was an alternate rehearsal for the Jimmy Fallon show which was nixed it in favor of “Danny Boy”. A brand new style of vocals was introduced by the BW band trio of Jeff Foskett, keyboardist Darien and vocalist/keyboardist Scotty. They did the “how how how how” style blues chanting to none other than 'Rollin and Tumblin' which gave Rhonda Smith a chance to concentrate on her great funky bass style and savagely attack the bass while Jeff was getting insane shrill unearthly tones! What a beautiful voice Lizzie has as Mary Ford and Imelda May would be proud of “How High The Moon”. The set closed with “A Day In A Life” to a standing ovation......
Jeff Foskett came back on before the encore and introduced each and every one of the seventeen musicians that had worked hard to share the stage and produce the sound they did. The last intro was for Jeff Beck. After quickly having a side bar with Al Jardine, Jeff made good on the Brian Wilson claim that Yardbirds material would be done and launched into twenty four bars of impeccable Cliff Gallup/Jeff Beck style “Jeff’s Boogie” when segued into a series of crowd pleasing Beach Boy surf favorites to which Jeff feverishly blistered on “Barbara Ann”....Brian Wilson was overcome with joy as the bands played on and the crowd rocked. The final encore must have broken records for Kleenex sales as Jeff soared over the top but just perfect to the Irish classic (Oh) “ Danny Boy” as the Brian Wilson band harmonized..... Just at the tail end before the closing notes a female fan screamed out “I love you Jeff” and Jeff hammed up a big feign of sheer delight pausing to put his hand up to his heart in acknowledgement before closing the number to a tumultuous applause.
After a big joint bow hand in hand with Brian Wilson Jeff took the Irish theme a step further as he was whisked right away after the show to Murphy's Irish pub on the grounds of the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino where he was joined by some band members of both bands and the genius behind putting all the business of the tour together along with tour manager Leo Rossi/Production manager Tim Lamb.....and that would be Brian Wilson’s executive producer Joe Thomas...all hands were on the blarney deck for some energetic planning to make the next stops and indeed the rest of the tour an even more unbelievable experience for fans both live, the inevitable YouTubes, MAJOR TV with Jimmy Fallon and special event media to follow. Stay tuned for the exploits of Dick, Doc, and Dean at Chicago Sound checks/show and Dick, Doc, Dean, and Stu…..sorry Stu’s name didn’t start with a D J…… at Sound Check and Show at the tour closer in Milwaukee…….(that is if Dick can find his ID and phone charger)……Be seeing you.
From CL Tampa Bay.........
Two legends, one night: Jeff Beck and Brian Wilson at Ruth Eckerd Hall A review of Saturday night's show in Clearwater. by GABE ECHAZABAL and TRACY MAY "Legend" is a word that's tossed around casually these days. In terms of musicians, a lifetime of devotion and dedication to one's art is a prerequisite for being awarded such a prestigious distinction. Two names come to mind when deciding who is indeed worthy of such praise: guitar wizard Jeff Beck and pop genius Brian Wilson. As unlikely a touring double-bill as it seems, last Saturday's nearly sold-out stop on the duo's current co-headlining world tour at Clearwater's Ruth Eckerd Hall was filled with a room full of devout followers who'd gladly slap that dubious "L" word on either of these two rock heavyweights. [Words by Gabe, photos by Tracy.] For only the second night of the lengthy nationwide trek, both headliners and their individual respective backing bands seemed well rehearsed and tight. Opening the night was Brian Wilson, sitting behind a majestic white grand piano at the left-hand lip of the stage. He wasted no time transporting the mostly middle-aged crowd to a happier and simpler time when Beach Boys songs ruled the airwaves. Kicking things off with the bouncy, familiar chords of "California Girls," Wilson and his 10-piece band instantaneously filled the room with sunshine and sea breezes...and impeccable harmonies. Easing his way though some of the biggest and most well-known Beach Boys classics, Wilson shared lead vocal duties with Al Jardine and David Marks, both original Beach Boys band members. While both shone instantly when taking their turns at the mic, vocally, Wilson seemed a little shaky, at least at first anyway. But by the time he wrapped his vocals around "God Only Knows," a song he introduced and a Paul McCartney favorite, he was in full control of his recognizable falsetto. Adding in some lesser-known numbers ("Little Bird" from 1968's Friends album) did plenty to please the diehards in attendance. But it was the set-ending numbers that got the majority of the crowd up and out of their seats and singing along joyously; "I Get Around" into the quirky, sonically mesmerizing classic "Good Vibrations" was a brilliant way to end the opening 70-minute set. In a total shifting of gears, guitar virtuoso Jeff Beck took the stage after a brief intermission. Backed by a smaller yet equally effective backing band, Beck wasted no time unleashing his jaw-dropping guitar prowess and wowing the crowd. Clad in black slacks with sparkledof the enormous stage while indubitably blazing magic from his white Fender Stratocaster. Aided by tall, leggy and gorgeous blonde electric violinist Lizzie Ball, Beck's four-piece band helped him sail to some pretty spectacular heights during his hour-long set. Touching on highlights from his long, illustrious career, standouts included a couple of numbers ("Big Block" and "Where Were You") from his stunning 1989 release, Jeff Beck's Guitar Shop. His reading of the Jimi Hendrix classic "Little Wing" rightfully elicited a spontaneous standing ovation, while Beck's take on jazz great Charles Mingus's "Goodbye Pork Pie" (from his 1976 landmark Wired album) benefited from Beck's uncanny ability to improvise and never play the same song in the exact same way. His showstopper, however, remains his head-spinning, goose bump-inducing version of the Beatles classic, "A Day in the Life." Beck miraculously packs an incredible amount of feeling and emotion into an instrumental version of this complicated composition and in the process, rivals the original in sheer bombast. For the show's closing, both bands occupied the crowded stage and Wilson once again lent his vocals to the final numbers. While Beck continued to quietly show off his spectacular chops, Wilson led the crowd through sing-along versions of "Surfin' U.S.A." and "Fun, Fun, Fun." While the pairing of these two legends seemed unusual when word of this tour hit the press, the end result was nothing short of stellar. Getting to spend nearly three hours hearing these two musical giants revisit their individual musical catalogs with respective incredible backing bands in tow was a fantastic way to spend a fun Saturday night filled with great music and great memories. Brian Wilson Set List California Girls Do It Again Shut Down (Al Jardine Lead Vocal) Little Deuce Coupe (Al Jardine Lead Vocal) Surfer Girl Then I Kissed Her (Al Jardine Lead Vocal) Little Bird (David Marks Lead Vocal) Old Man River/Cottonfields (Al Jardine Lead Vocal) That's Why God Made The Radio Sail On, Sailor Heroes and Villains Darlin' Marcella Pet Sounds God Only Knows Wouldn't It Be Nice Sloop John B Help Me, Rhonda (Al Jardine Lead Vocal) I Get Around Good Vibrations Jeff Beck Set List Eternity's Breath/Stratus Even Odds You Know, You Know Yemin Little Wing Where Were You Big Block Our Prayer (with Brian and his band on vocals) Child Is Father of the Man (with Brian and his band on vocals) Surf's Up (with Brian and his band on vocals) Goodbye Pork Pie Hat How High the Moon Rollin' and Tumblin' (With Several Members of Brian Wilson Band) A Day in the Life Encore: Do You Wanna Dance? Surfin' U.S.A. Fun, Fun, Fun Encore 2: Danny Boy source: http://cltampa.com/tampa/two-legends-one-night-jeff-beck-and -brian-wilson-at-ruth-eckerd-hall/Content?oid=4266710#.UkxMReCWVS8
From Eric Mirell, Westbury, NY, October 12, 2013.....
I haven’t missed Jeff Beck in the New York area since his first show at the Fillmore East in 1969. I saw the Rough and Ready Line up, BBA, various personnel changes, the Jennifer Batten years, and I am biased in saying I don’t think I ever saw a bad Jeff Beck show or one that didn’t have a few real surprises. Saturday night at Westbury NY may well have been one of Jeffs best.
Brian Wilson and his band opened and were incredibly polished and doled out classic after classic, sounding fresh and exciting. With no Beach Boys encore, Jeff took the stage at this great venue with a stellar line up, the addition of violin and rhythm guitar was pure genius, the NY show didn’t fail to amaze the audience that really seemed to be there for jeff rather than mostly Beach Boy fans. Only Rhonda Smith is left of the last lineup. His constant shifting of gears is what keeps his music fresh, even old standards like ‘The Pump’ and ‘Rollin and Tumblin”, never sound tired. Jeff seemed relaxed and enjoying himself as he should of, I didn’t hear one missed note, the sound and tone were perfect. It was a magical evening and my friend that joined me said it may well have been the best show he had ever seen.
We all know Jeff is more than just a guitarist, he is a master musician, and only Jeff could have worked the Beach Boy sound into a few of his songs Saturday night, just like another instrument. It all sounded natural, as it should be as opposed to some manufactured Beck/Beach Boys novelty.. Even covering the Beach Boys Classic ‘Surfs Up’ brought his own style to that iconic song few musicians could do.
I don’t know about the rest of you fans, but when I come out of a JB show like this, its as if the world is as it should be. Lets hope Brians CD with Jeff guesting comes out soon.
October 22nd Rick McGowen, roving reporter for the website...
Cazart!!* On the road again with Jeff Beck! I saw the Yardbirds and Jeff Beck when I was 13 years old in 1965...48 years later, Jeff Beck was then and is now, the finest live performer in Rock N Roll and beyond. It is the pursuit of pure tone. Perfect pitch; the ability to intuit the next correct note, is what Brian Wilson and Jeff Beck share. I will spare you any attempt to musically critique these concerts. And I’m sure Dick can add the tech data for the players. I will leave that to two very fine reviews from David Von Baden covering the opening show in the Hard Rock Casino in Florida (Dick was there!). Mr. Von Baden called Brian Wilson & Jeff Beck, “transcendent keepers of melody.”
And Geoff Edgers for the Boston Globe, who echoes my sentiment. Calling Jeff Beck, “ the finest guitarist of his era, probably any era.”
As I have done at every possible occasion, I attached myself to 4 shows for this go round of concerts in the New York metropolitan area, which for me is anywhere within 500 miles if Jeff is in the vicinity.
Be advised, these are FLO-MAX events! The Mens room line is longer than the Ladies.
First was the Sands Casino in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. Brand new venue, not a bad seat in the house, but the echo in the hall was noticeable. This was a Beach Boys crowd. Wilson and his band are all multi-instrumentalists and vocalists. This is as fine a band as you can get. Jeff, as usual wowed the previously un-initiated. Just shy of a sell-out at 3200, everybody left with plenty to talk about.
The setlist (posted on the site earlier) stayed the same for next 2 shows at the Palace Theater in Albany, NY and the Tower Theater in Philadelphia, PA. The Palace, is a magnificent Art Deco venue that remains beautifully maintained. Great show, a much softer sound. Again, a mixed audience but much more enthusiastic; sold out, crowd on it’s feet.
The Tower, This funky old theater (1927) has been and remains one of the finest venues for rock bands to perform in . Philly, like NY is a tough town with a rabid and critical audience. I’ve seen Mr. Beck here more times than I can remember. Small, great acoustics……….both bands blew the roof off. This was without doubt the most enthusiastic crowd of all the shows. Dancing in the aisles for the old Beach Boys songs. Wilson telling them he would not play Good Vibrations unless they stayed on their feet. Jeff having a lot of fun. Killer show! Great dive bar right next to the theater for the after show. Late great night!!!
The Beacon, NYC. Everything changed. Brian Wilson announcing half way through his set that they would play Pet Sounds in it’s entirety. This was completely spontaneous. I think this could only have happened in NYC; Wilson taking a chance on the crowd and pulling it off.
Jeff Beck in NYC!!!! This is the audience completely unsparing of anybody in the way of Mr. Beck. The Lunacy is on full display. I have seen my share of opening acts booed off the stage from the 1st note! Jeff was very vocal and told the crowd that, “ you make me nervous you bastards!” Without fail, he delivers his set with the spontaneity and ingenuity that make him special. Little Wing and the Pump are spectacular, the audience raving! The beauty of youtube is now the possibility of seeing Jeff play the same songs just days apart. But NEVER, EVER the same way twice.!
The paradox - the virtuoso instrumentalist ,a perfectionist who is a punk at heart; taking great risk on stage. Risk, it‘s the essence of Roll n Roll……….which is why we are here. To see Jeff Beck thrill us with the guitar as nobody else can!
* with attribution to the late Great Hunter S. Thompson.
From Music News Nashville....
From The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.....
By Melissa Ruggieri The Atlanta Journal-Constitution Brian Wilson is a man of few words. But when he’s really, really rocked by something — say, the guitar playing of Jeff Beck — he can’t contain his effusiveness. “No one plays like Jeff Beck. No one. I met him seven years ago at my MusiCares (event) and I remembered how great he sounded on his guitar, so we had him come to the studio five months ago and he blew our minds,” Wilson, 71, said recently from his base in Los Angeles. It’s a phrase he repeated several times when asked about Beck, even though he never crossed paths with the legendary guitarist during the Yardbirds’ days and doesn’t have a favorite Beck composition. The idea for this joint tour, which kicked off Sept. 27 and plays Chastain Park Amphitheatre this Friday, came after Wilson invited Beck to play on his upcoming solo album, which Wilson describes as “very mellow, ballads and piano songs.” But this isn’t your ordinary double bill. The two marquee names will take the stage together with Beach Boys members Al Jardine and David Marks and delve into an inventory of hits. Then Wilson will perform a solo set that he said will include “Beach Boys classics, some new songs and a lot of lesser-known Beach Boys songs.” Beck, 69, takes over the second half of the show with his four-piece outfit to explore his catalog of rock classics, and the foursome of Wilson, Beck, Jardine and Marks will cap the night with their own favorites as well as Yardbirds material. Wilson said he’s looking forward to touring with Beck, whom he got to know well in the studio. “That guy can play anything,” he remarked with more than a hint of admiration. While the Beach Boys famously toured last year for their 50th anniversary, the Wilson/Jardine/Marks faction will apparently remain a separate entity from the Mike Love/Bruce Johnston Beach Boys, currently touring again under that name. When asked if he thought the full band would get together again anytime soon, Wilson simply said, “I doubt it.” In addition to the tour with Beck and upcoming album, Wilson will also be the topic of a biopic, tentatively slated for release next year. John Cusack will play Wilson — “He blew my mind,” Wilson said of the actor’s portrayal — and the singer is content that it will be an accurate depiction of his life. “People are gonna learn what I went through in my life. They’re going to learn a lot about my music, too,” Wilson said. So what is left for a man who has seemingly achieved every musical milestone to accomplish? “A good rock ‘n’ roll album. A Phil Spector-type album,” Wilson said. “I’m going to start one in December or January. I’m going to do it.” For more music news, interviews and concert reviews, visit The Music Scene blog at www.accessatlanta.com. CONCERT PREVIEW Brian Wilson and Jeff Beck 8 p.m. Oct. 4. $35-$55. Chastain Park Amphitheatre, 4469 Stella Drive N.W., Atlanta. 1-800-745-3000,www.ticketmaster.com.
From Dick Wyzanski, Chicago, IL, October 29, 2013.....
A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To……………Chicago
There I was at Fort Lauderdale airport having gone through frantic last minute base touches with Chicago House of Blues host, JBAGG member, and San Miguel school charity coordinator/promoter Kevin Allodi. Adding to the mix was getting through the quagmire of this special event as connected to the Brian Wilson tour machine handling Jeff Beck and his band. So it went back and forth from LA to Chicago to poor old Dick and finally I was able to strap on two layers of sweatshirts and windbreaker around my waist in preparation for the cold north as I wasn’t about to put them on in Fort Lauderdale Hah!
So I’m waiting at the terminal gate and #2 nature called! They didn’t have any shelves to put anything on so ID, Boarding Pass, Tour Book, etc went on top of the little toilet paper holder. After finishing my duty I stood up and attempted to turn around so I could refasten both sweatshirts and jacket around my waist when suddenly I felt one of the clothing arms hit the toilet paper holder while simultaneously hear the pile of book/paper thud to the floor as the toilet was automatically flushing. Panicked I got down on my knees in the little stall and desperately hoped that nothing had flushed down the toilet….NO BOARDING PASS OMG I’m F*&^%D!!! In these situations you just gotta keep hoping so I strained and reached around the base of the toilet, the only place I could not see in the stall. MY BOARDING PASS YAY! Now I can go see Jeff Beck and band, Doc, and my Chicago host for the week...possessor of more Jeff Beck memorabilia than anyone on the face of this planet/long time friend the man with more face time on the Ronnie Scott’s DVD than Jason………… Mr. Dean Opper!
Dean picked me up at the airport and took me back to the charming old neighborhood of Irving Park a few miles from Wrigley Field...go Cubs as they haven’t won a World Series since the days of antiquity. I had brokered a photo shoot deal for Dean at the HOB so he showed me all his professional home studio set up and cameras etc..quite impressive. Dean is shall we say very “focused” so he was ready to shoot and literally did...thousands of photos not only for the Chicago and hence Milwaukee gigs (See Doc’s Milwaukee tour report elsewhere in this issue) but for Kevin’s charity as well.
We got to the HOB the next afternoon and ate some lunch at the HOB eatery. Kevin greeted us personally and got us our Production Badges, Oh boy! Doc met up with us before sound check as we waited eagerly. Rhonda was was first to show up. She walked past Doc and I, exchanged hugs and greetings with Doc and then just turned around to me with a slightly flirty sultry smug smile and said, 'Hello Dick'! OMG I couldn’t believe she remembered my name as I had only met her once in 011 in Clearwater at the last gig briefly and told her so. “Well, I’ve seen all your pictures” she said with a slight laugh. I reminded her of my Feeding the Sharks U/W video I had put Jeff’s music to that the band had played on the tour bus on the way out of the Clearwater gig according to Tyler Bryant. She just said “Yeah, that was another tour” and made her way to the stage.
Then Lizzie came through. All hugs and smiles she greeted both me and Doc and was totally psyched for the performance ahead. Shortly after she got onstage I was chatting with Doc as we were both waiting for Niocolas and Jeff to arrive. I heard from a distance my name be called out over and over again Dick, Dick, Dick,...I turned finally to the stage and there was Lizzie, summoning me waving some gadget in her hand. I walked up to the stage and she bent down quickly explaining that she wanted me to take pics of the sound check and her from her iphone. I panicked and had thoughts of revealing my true nature as the Nerd of Nerds when it comes to modern phone gadgetry but timidly said “Oh sure...I don’t know if I”...Lizzie, sensing my predicament nonetheless just shushed me with an “Oh it’s easy you won’t have a problem. You just....” Visions of abominable failure danced through my head but I managed to get the basics down quickly enough to turn to my right as Nicolas stopped to greet me. Jeff and Andre came in to my left and what a laugh they all must have had with Lizzie huddled over me with an iphone and me trying to motion with it like I knew what I was doing.
I took a stage right position away from the scuttlebutt where I met Kevin’s brother Brian Allodi. When I explained to him what I was doing he attempted more iphone explanations. All of a sudden the camera went blank to password and I thought that did it. Now I am really screwed. Brian just laughed and said no problem all you have to do to shoot camera is hit this override button and the phone goes right to camera. Needless to say the rest of the sound check I did not let that phone go off the camera screen no matter what it took!
As Jeff was ready to strap on his guitar, Andre suddenly came out onto the floor in front of the stage staring and moving right towards Dean with a stern disposition. He asked Dean what he was doing there. If it had been me I would have already melted into the woodwork and committed Hari Kari. However Dean is a unique individual. Cool as a cucumber he methodically nonchalantly told Andre he had credentials from the promoter and was just doing his authorized job. Andre picked up the Production Photo pass from Dean’s chest, examined it and shrugged ok. Then he notices me!! Thank God I had met him in Florida at rehearsals! He nodded ok and went back to the stage.
The sound check was phenomenal. Jeff was extremely relaxed, riffing up a storm, and very into his fellow band musicians. Various members of Brian Wilson’s band were back and forth. Brian’s white piano was the focal point for Jeff side bars and discussions with Lizzie, guitar tech/stage crew, and Brain Wilson/Al Jardine. There had been some orchestra like plexi glass barriers put up around the drums which although was probably for sound baffling as they were videoing Brian Wilson’s set, was a pain in the neck for that small stage and stifled the ambience of togetherness so Jonathan Joseph had the stage crew quickly get rid of that. Interesting was that after that Brian Wilson’s drummer did the same thing with his setup! I took a million and one pictures for Lizzie and while doing so ran into Tara Ricart the Live Nation VIP coordinator who remembered me from Florida and gleefully caught wind of my fumbling around with the infamous iphone
After the sound check caterers for the semi private charity event started setting up. Brian Wilson and a few of his party decided to eat right there at the floor tables. I ran into Joe Thomas who was sitting with Mary Jardine, Al’s wife. The main doors finally opened and the crowd started gathering. Kevin Allodi and his wife were amazing hosts. Everything was going like clockwork. The Charity part of the evening got underway and they raised in real time well in excess of some forty thousand dollars for a most worthy cause the San Miguel school whose student performance statistics are off the charts. We need more schools like that in this country! Dean was doing his part by helping out to take thousands of pics of attendees, dignitaries which included some famous rockers from Rush and other bands, and the sponsors of the show. He also took upstairs photos of Fender donated Strats of which Jeff had signed a few for charity contest winners. In that upstairs room was also a priceless wall photo back in the day of Jeff Beck playing at the Daytop Music Festival in 1969.
Showtime saw the Brian Wilson band go through a well paced and rehearsed set. I love small intimate clubs like the House of Blues because vocals, that band’s strong suit, sounded angelic when the harmonies kicked in. We had seen Jeff Beck’s evening set list which was a bit shorter than normal as was the BW one due to the charity event proceedings but the word had already gotten out that there was going to be at least one song added back to lengthen the set to at least a full hour.
Sid and I had been sitting back along the rail directly behind the soundboard. I ran into Leo Rossi there who smiled and shook my hand. One of the core JBAGG fans, Brian Comerford also recognized me and greeted us. Just as Jeff was ready to get on Doc started to get up, I instantly knew what he was thinking as I had the same thoughts. What the heck. The worst that can happen is that Jeff Beck would see our two faces while playing, get spooked, lose his place on the set list (that’s happened before) and have our testicles severed. We had both come a long way and come hell or high water we were going to be at ground zero center stage right with our pal Dean who was poised to start shooting what turned out to be the two best concert photo opportunities of his life!! 'Eternity’s Breath' was metered out with perfect beat, mix, and energy transitioned into Jonathan’s rolling thunder into the funky 'Stratus' as Rhonda and JJ were in the groove. Having heard opening night as out front inspired and great as it was, this band through the tour had obviously become tighter than a nut, something Lizzie was glad to hear from me when we discussed that very fact a day later right before the Milwaukee sound check. Being up that close I could also feel and hear the different attacks Lizzie had on her harmonizing string parts to 'Even Odds' and 'Big Block'. Every nuance of Jeff’s five finger controlled right hand on the whammy bar, volume control, and finger/thumb picking was easily spotted in the perfect stage lighting. Frequently looking back to Jonathan and Rhonda during 'You Never Know' and 'Big Block', the bands energy was addictive. The thing I noticed most about this show was that by now Nicolas different Midi, and guitars were distinctively being mixed to their max at the soundboard so his unique openings to the enchanting Turkish style “Yemin” and Hendrix’s heavenly “Little Wing” stood out in contrast to the crescendo of each of those tunes development by the maestro Strat master Jeff Beck. “They Won’t Go (When I Go)”, the Stevie Wonder tear jerker made this show goer cry. Lizzie’s violin was melodically so sweet and Jeff’s guitar so bending nuanced toned, I couldn’t hold it any longer. At one point in the show Jeff turned to Lizzie and motioned the crowd to please give it up for her. It must be said about Rhonda that her new bass setup and sound is popping like never before and her solo on 'You Know ,You Know' brought down the house as it would the next night in Milwaukee. The addition to the set list was “A Day In The Life”. Despite in an interview claiming he would not be playing it anymore, it is one of his signature performed tunes, a Grammy Winner for him, and this band gives it a slightly different feel and sound so perform it he did with every majestic perfectly picked out note and bend it ended the set which saw Brain Wilson and accompanying vocalists add their harmonies to a few tunes and create a three white boy howl on “Rollin and Tumblin”.
Back for the encores both bands had thunderous response to individual band member introductions and then had fun with the couple of Beach boys surf classics before closing with ”Danny Boy”. As Jeff was milking out every last note of the Irish classic also highlighted for me with Jonathan Joseph’s perfect snare rap meter, I took note of a lot of the faces of Brian Wilson’s band looking at Jeff’s hands in awe. Hoarse couldn’t start to describe my voice. Dean, Sid, and I were all in a state of end of show jubilation waiting for the next day in which I will leave you in the good hands of Sid’s account including a sequel to the them of A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To...complete with frantic pleads from Dean to have me contact Lizzie to shoot the sound check, me with left behind ID at Dean’s...me with no phone charger...Sid frantic without a Pepsi...and other trivial pursuits of monumental proportion! Hah! Be Seeing you!
From Sheila and LeRoy Melms.....Detroit, October 25, 2013
Thanks so much for asking me to post our concert experience on your website! This really started for me when I got an e-mail from a friend a couple months ago that said, "Congrats, you deserve it!" That's when I saw the tour dates for Jeff Beck and Brian Wilson....it was really going to happen, and we were just ecstatic to see that our city was on the list! We started counting down weeks, then days, and then hours! On the day of our show, I was told at the last minute that we would be getting back stage passes for helping with some promotional tasks, and I didn't even know what to say except "thank you" about 100 times....so let me do that publicly once more, DOC FEELGOOD BECKOLOGIST, THANK YOU VERY, VERY MUCH!!!!!
I've been a fan of Jeff Beck since age 11, when I borrowed my sister's Jeff Beck Group #2 albums and got hooked. Early in 2012 while perusing this website, I got curious and clicked on the link to the "Jeff Beck, A Guitarist's Guitarist" (JBAGG) fan forum group....and I found my common ground! Not only have I made some great friends here on our fan boards and learned a lot of information about Jeff Beck happenings, I have also become friends with Lizzie Ball, who is one of the nicest, most positive people I have ever met!
The show began with Brian Wilson's band rolling out their catalog of classic surfer music, which was really wonderful, and I would describe it as nostalgic, familiar and comfortable. After a short intermission that seemed like an eternity, Jeff's band came out, and there is only one word to describe their performance......WOW! We couldn't believe our ears! I just sat there wondering how long Jeff has had this sound in his head, and everyone was listening so intently; all eyes were on the stage with jaws on the floor!! It was great to see the Brian Wilson fans watching Jeff and listening to the music and finally understanding what we already know.....that Jeff only gets more powerful and more creative with each new chapter of his illustrious career. The new band is astounding! Jonathan and Rhonda are rock solid, and Lizzie and Nicolas blend in to compliment Jeff's guitar perfectly. This is an unbelievably talented group of people, and their music is just so emotional and inspirational.....we never wanted it to end! When we were standing up to leave after the show, the gentleman in front of me turned and said, "What a rush!!!!" I said, "Absolutely!!!!", followed by high-fives all around!
The icing on the cake came after the show, when my husband and I were shown the way to the back stage area, and (no joke) Lizzie Ball announced my arrival when we walked in the room. That made me feel very special! Lizzie introduced us to Jeff, who was very nice and extremely calm when my camera jammed; he was gracious enough to sign my Guitar Shop CD, and he gave me a thumbs up for remembering to bring my own Sharpie pen! Lizzie mentioned that I was helping with some PR, so Jeff jokingly offered me a job! On our way out of the building, we got lost and ended up back on the stage where Lizzie appeared again and was kind enough to pose for a couple of pictures. I thanked her for doing the introduction and breaking the ice since I was so nervous, but she said I seemed very calm and totally had it together. I'll have to take her word for it!!
We are still floating high above the clouds from this whole experience and so grateful that we got to hear Jeff play live again, and to meet him was just the greatest thrill of our lives. I respect him not only for his superior skills as a musician and an artist, but also for his character and the impact he has on people. I'm not surprised at the number of fans who write and say how Jeff's music has changed their lives, and I'm proud to say that I'm among them. In an interview a couple years ago, Jeff made a statement that has been engraved on the edge of my mind since I heard it. He said, "You have to learn to love what you do, otherwise you'll go downhill pretty fast." I have taken that statement and literally applied it to every aspect of my life. So for me personally, I would like to thank Jeff for his wonderful music and also for changing my life with just one statement that I heard loud and clear when I seemed to need it the most. I guess that's why he's the Guv'nor!
Thanks, again, for the opportunity to post our experience. We will never forget it!!! After everyone takes some well-earned time off, we look forward to what Jeff has on his agenda for 2014 and beyond!!
LeRoy and Sheila Melms
Milwaukee, October 30, 2013...
Milwaukee On My Mind
When Jeff Beck first stated in a USA TODAY interview that promoters were calling after hearing that he was playing on Brian Wilson’s forthcoming solo ALBUM FOR Capitol Records, little did we know that what would be a concert promoter’s bucket list item was to come true.
The sensible thing would have been to have legendary pop figure Brian Wilson, the creative force behind the Beach Boys, and their co-founder to play the tunes from the album that Jeff Beck played on – all told five songs on such a tour.
The problem with that logic is that the album is not finished, it is not even titled and has no set release date. Furthermore there isn’t even a single that features Beck, so potential concert goers of such a pairing were left to wonder, “Where is the common ground?”. Jeff Beck does consider the PET SOUNDS album by The Beach Boys to be a landmark album. He is also quite fond of their harmonies and considers Wilson a pop music genius, and Brian Wilson has stated in a recent BILLBOARD Magazine interview in regards to Beck, “ He plays the most goddamn greatest guitar you've ever heard. He really brings quality notes, more notes per bar than you can imagine.” So I guess there is some mutual admiration, right?
With artists of their stature the ticket prices were pretty hefty, and in addition to that, common sense would let a potential buyer know that the sets of the two acts would be shorter than usual since they were co-headlining.
Jeff Beck usually plays 90 minute sets when he headlines. On this tour there were initial rumors that he would only play 45 minutes and ditto for Wilson, the latter would end up not being true, but still for the price of admission with neither act having new product – a dicey proposition.
There was also the p.r. spin that Beck would play some tunes from The Yardbirds, that didn’t happen, although in Hollywood, Florida on the tour’s opening night he played a few bars on “Jeff’s Boogie” near the end of the night.
Brian Wilson had done Spring and Summer tour dates across America, with a pretty solid backing band of accomplished players such as Jeffrey Foskett, Paul Von Murtens, Probyn Gregory, Scott Bennett and more, all told nine in number. Wilson also decided to add ex-Beach Boys original members Al Jardine and David Marks to the bill, thus making it 12 people on stage during his set. The vocals at times would have as many as ten people singing various harmonies, unisons and such. Quite a sound indeed.
Jeff Beck, who hadn’t toured since 2011, assembled a new backing band of returning bassist from the EMOTION & COMMOTION world tour, Rhonda Smith (whom at one tine played for Prince for ten years), newcomers Lizzie Ball, a seasoned classical violinist from the world stage; drummer Jonathan Joseph, a journeyman that has played with Pat Metheny, Josef Zawinul, Betty Wright, David Sanborn, Rickey Martin, Alexander O’Neal and Joss Stone; and jazz guitarist from Switzerland Nicolas Meier. Ball and Meier did a one-off gig with Beck at a church in London in December of 2012 as a trio and performed the song “Corpus Christi Carol” from Beck’s last studio album the highly acclaimed Grammy winning EMOTION & COMMOTION. Ball and Joseph also played with Beck at the Crossroads Guitar Festival in NYC in April, and in June did a one-off gig in Iceland with Beck (Smith was also on that gig).
The tour idea was to have each act play a set then come together and do some new things from the forthcoming album – well that didn’t happen either, but what did was this: Brian Wilson and his band opened and did about an hour set, on a few select dates they were joined by ex-Beach Boy Blondie Chaplain (who sang on the hit single “Sail On”); then there was about a 15 minute intermission to change things around for Beck’s set; the guitar legend would come on with his band and do about 45 minutes before being joined by varying members of Wilson band adding their voices to as many as four songs near the end of the set; then there was the grand finale which at times would have 18 musicians on stage doing three encores of: “Barbara Ann”, “Surfin’ USA” and “Oh Danny Boy”.
The only times the coupling really worked was on the medley of “Our Prayer”/”Child Is A Father To The Man”/”Surf’s Up” and the last tune of the night “Oh Danny Boy”.
The contrasts in styles couldn’t have been more obvious than on the totally solo set lists. Realistically the only things Brian Wilson and Jeff Beck have in common are that they both rose to fame in the Sixties, have a fondness for hot rods and are survivors of the rock and roll era. Wilson’s set included many Beach Boy classics, and the crowds that were there for that loved it. In Milwaukee I thought Jeff Beck was going to face a mass exodus for the exits the way the Wilson fans gave ovation after ovation and stood up and danced and sang-a-long on all the hits - a veritable jukebox of hits was in full effect with “Help Me Rhonda”, “Sloop John B”, “Heroes And Villains”, “Sail On”, “Fun, Fun, Fun”, “I Get Around”, “Do It Again” and “Good Vibrations”.
When Jeff Beck entered to the strains of “Eternity’s Breath” (originally done by John McLaughlin and The Mahavishnu Orchestra), the crowd was on its feet with a standing ovation. From there Beck and band did “Stratus”, “Even Odds”, a remarkable cover of “Little Wing” (made famous by Jimi Hendrix) , “The Pump”, the incredible “Yemin” (written by Nicolas Meier), “You Never Know”, a salute to John McLaughlin again on “You Know, You Know”, a haunting cover of Stevie Wonder’s “They Won’t Go When I Go” and “Big Block” (complete with backdrop movie of Jeff Beck and his hot rod collection and him driving down the road at this estate in the UK), each and every tune getting a standing ovation and huge audience response. The set continued with Wilson and some of his band entering for the a cappella “Our Prayer” that segued into the medley of “Child Is Father Of The Man” and the killer “Surf’s Up” (which Beck played in 2005 at the Grammy MusiCares tribute to Wilson), then “Goodbye Pork Pie Hat”/”Brush With The Blues” with the latter having some ooohs and ahhhs harmonies by some of Wilson’s band and a touch of an organ comp from Scotty Bennett’ s synthesizer, then Beck on the tour de force “Where Were You” (which he played flawlessly), then out came Paul Von Murtens on harmonica, Scotty Bennett, Jeffrey Foskett and Darian Sahanaja on field holler woah ahhoahs on “Rollin’ And Tumblin’” (exit all Brian Wilson people once again), a Beck Grammy winning cover of The Beatles’ “A Day In The Life” ends his set.
Band intros happen next as all 17 musicians are introduced, and then the 3 song encore of “Barbara Ann”, “Surfin’ USA” and “Oh Danny Boy”.
How a Beach Boys type crowd was flipped into being into Jeff Beck style of music shall probably always remain a mystery as this is probably the oddest coupling in modern music history, only rivaled by two other situations: The Monkees and The Jimi Hendrix Experience in the late Sixties, and recently a Van Halen tour with Kool and The Gang as the opening act.
I can say this in closing, I sang-a-long on a few of the Beach classics that were like the soundtrack of pop radio during their heyday, and regarding Jeff Beck, he is probably the only musician that has never as a solo artist had a Top 40 hit single in the USA, and can command such respect, admiration and enthusiasm from a crowd of baby-boomers and still not play one note from his two biggest selling album in his career (BLOW BY BLOW and WIRED albeit he used “Goodbye Pork Pie Hat” as an intro to “brih With The Blues”). Mind boggling to say the least, but all in all, it was the best Jeff Beck concert I have ever seen or heard. His playing was spectacular, incredible, superb and any other adjectives of exaltation one can think of.
This is his best band ever, all included, and the addition of Lizzie Ball, totally wonderful; the texture covered by Nicolas Meier, you never miss the keyboards; drummer Jonathan Joseph, a true anchor of the rhythm section with spirit-filled beats and accents that propel the Beck sound; and words are not enough to describe what Rhonda Smith does on the bass guitar and standup bass – in a league of her own, and a true team player in supporting Jeff’s style and glue-tight locked with Joseph.
Lizzie’s stage presence covers all elements as well – the perfect foil for Beck as they trade-off, and then the support element as she colors and counter plays against his riffs. The solos on “You Know, You Know” taken by Lizzie, Jeff, Rhonda and Jonathan were so awesome till I am at loss for words. Smith’s bass solo had Jeff jumping up and down and looking back at her shouting and gesturing – the crowd really responded. On the Stevie Wonder cover “They Won’t Go When I Go”, there was a segment where both Lizzie and Rhonda were bowing their string instruments plucking style at the same time raising the intensity of this haunting and melancholy ballad. (It was learned that Lizzie Ball had brought this song to the table, and even though it had been rehearsed, the band didn’t debut it till the Oakland, California show and have kept it in the set since). The acoustic guitar work of Meier on “Yemin” was supreme and all night long he gave Beck the foundation in chords he needed to soar off of. Joseph, never stopped driving, his attack on the foot drum with his double bass pedal especially on “Big Block” caused Beck to look back at him on several occasions. His snare has such a forceful pop to it, when he and Smith lock, Jeff Beck must have crooks in his neck as he keeps turning around looking at the rhythm section duo with gazes of affirmation.
Jeff Beck over the years has had some incredible drummers on his live shows: Bernard “Pretty” Purdie”, Tony Smith, Simon Phillips, Marc Mondesir, Vinnie Colaiuta, Narada Michael Walden and now add Jonathan Joseph, perhaps his best glove yet. Last time I had seen Jeff I told him of his great knack for picking bass players, not too shabby having worked with – Stanley Clarke, Mo Foster, Pino Palladino, Randy Hope-Taylor, Tal Wilkenfeld and Rhonda Smith, but for my money I will take Smith. A band doing what Jeff Beck does must have a tight rhythm section, Smith-Joseph make it work and that is what Beck needs to go off and do his thing. Some of his previous line-ups had players that didn’t seem to know their role, or shall we say place. This band as a whole comes across a well-oiled unit and their cohesiveness is obvious, with one and all knowing Jeff Beck is their fearless leader, but knowing that he will give everyone their moments in the sun to shine. Jeff Beck band 2013, bravo, bring on the album and world tour in 2014.
Should this coupling happen again with Wilson, no! Did it make sense, still the verdict on that is not in, but based on the Milwaukee crowd and the tour reviews overall, definitely maybe, no pun intended.
We think this is really cool. We've collected several setlists from the 2013 tour. The last one from Milwaukee was even autographed for Dick. Our friend Bill Lantz came up with the idea of making them 'virtual juke boxes' that would link the songs to YouTube videos. You click on a song on the setlist and bingo! He then wrote the html code for it to all work. Enjoy!
Click On Set List Song
Actual YouTube Links
Eternity's Breath/Stratus - Bethlehem 10/6/13
El Becko: A Jeff Beck Salute Tributee: Jeff Beck. Personnel: Andrew Crawford (vocals, guitar, flamenco guitar, nylon-string guitar, percussion); Steve Booke (guitar, keyboards, programming); Martin Winch (guitar, keyboards, drum programming); Chris Mahoney (guitar, synthesizer, programming); Doug Doppler (guitar, drums); Larry VanFleet, Brian Tarquin, Greg Rapaport (guitar); Hal Lindes (acoustic guitar, electric guitar); Steve Bingham (violin); Chris Ingram (Fender Rhodes piano, keyboards); Chris Cubeta, Robi Parolin, Nate VanFleet, Greg Morrow, John Macaluso (drums). Recording information: Galuminum Foil Studio, New York, NY; Jungle Room Studios; Ware House Production Studio, Omaha, NE. Author: Adam Moore. Track Listing 1 You Know What I Mean 2 Big Block 3 People Get Ready 4 Pump 5 Blue Wind 6 Scatterbrain 7 Star Cycle 8 Play With Me 9 Two Rivers 10 Plynth Water Down The Drain 11 You Never Know/Nadia 12 Led Boots 13 Where Were You CD Universe Part number 7754934 Label NuGroove Orig Year 2008 Catalog number 2020 Discs 1 Release Date Oct 14, 2008 Studio/Live Studio Mono/Stereo Producer Chris Cubeta; Chris Mahoney; Howard Hart; Doug Doppler; Brian Tarquin; Brian Tarquin; Brian Tarquin (Compilation) Engineer Larry Van Fleet; Mark Fawcett; Doug Doppler Recording Time 59 minutes Personnel Greg Morrow Hal Lindes - acoustic guitar, electric guitar Brian Tarquin Chris Ingram - Fender Rhodes piano, keyboards Chris Mahoney - guitar, synthesizer, programming Doug Doppler - guitar, drums Larry VanFleet Martin Winch - guitar, keyboards, drum programming Nate VanFleet Robi Parolin
Rewired Recording information: Avatar Studios, New York, NY; Bride Music Studio, Toronto, Canada; Elf Studios, Bayside, NY; Howe Studios, Los Angeles, CA; Iguana Studios, Weymouth, MA; Lappin Production Studios, Hanover, MA; Playland Studios, Wheeling, NY; Porcelain God Studios, Lynbrook, NY; The Red Room, Vancouver, Canada. "Rewired: Tribute to Jeff Beck" is a true testament to one of the ultimate godfathers of rock and fusion guitar. Features electrifying performances by: Greg Howe (Shrapnel Records artist), Carl Roa (of The Magic Elf), Dave Martone (Lion Music Recording Artist), Jon Finn Group (Jon is a Grammy nominated guitarist for his work with the Boston Pops and a former Legato Records artist), Rob Balducci (Favored Nations artist), Slav Simanic (ex-Eidolon), Don Lappin (ex-Michael Sweet Band), and more. Personnel: Slav Simanic (guitar, keyboards); Kelly Jones (guitar, synthesizer); Dave Martone (guitar, drums); Don Lappin (guitar, drum programming); Prashant Aswani, Jon Finn, Rob Balducci, Steve Booke (guitar); Ross Ramsay (keyboards); Dave Miranda, Greg Howe, Larry Finn (drums). Audio Mixer: Mike Dmitrovic. Track Listing 1 Blue Wind 3:55 2 Star Cycle 3 Led Boots 4 You Know What I Mean 2:29 5 Goodbye Porkpie Hat 6 Definitely Maybe 7 You Never Know 8 Where Were You? 9 Pump 10 Cause We've Ended As Lovers 5:42 Product Details CD Universe Part number 6660982 Label Progressive Arts Orig Year 2004 Catalog number 1015 Discs 1 Release Date Jan 27, 2004 Studio/Live Studio Mono/Stereo Stereo Producer Kelly Jones; Dave Martone; Don Lappin; Greg Howe; Jon Finn Group; Rob Balducci; Steve Booke; Slav Simanic Recording Time 52 minutes
Jeff Beck Tribute "Dirty Fingers" Released Sep 01, 2010 on the Jungle Room Studios/BHP Music label. Track Listing 1 Becko(with with Gary Hoey) 3:47 2 Play With Me(with with Brian Tarquin)4:06 3 Blue Wind(with with Billy Sheehan, Doug Doppler)3:55 4 Big Block (with James Ryan) 5:03 5 You Know What I Mean (with Brian Tarquin) 5:03 6 Star Cycle (with Chris Mahoney)5:19 7 Freeway Jam (with Brian Tarquin)4:43 8 The Pump (with Howard Hart)6:22 9 Led Boots (with Greg Rapaport)4:00 10 Plynth Water Down The Drain (with Larry Van Fleet)3:06 Product Details CD Universe Part number 8355651 Label Jungle Room Studios / BHP Music Discs 1 Release Date Sep 01, 2010
Freeway Jam: To Beck and Back An all-star cast of jazz, blues, and fusion guitarists gives Jeff Beck's catalog a whirl in this hourlong instrumental tribute to one of the U.K.'s finest six-stringers. The back line of drummers Simon Phillips and Vinnie Colaiuta, bassist Stu Hamm, keyboardist Mitchel Forman, and rhythm guitarist/producer Jeff Richman (who also solos on "El Becko") provides unifying glue to the proceedings. Not surprisingly, the ten-title track list concentrates on Beck's generally lyric-free fusion work that started with 1975's Blow by Blow. But an occasional foray into older material (John Scofield's drastically rearranged Yardbirds-era "Over Under Sideways Down" and Eric Johnson's take on "Beck's Bolero") gives it a bit of variety. Still, this is clearly geared toward shredders and readers of Guitar One magazine, who will likely eat up the finger speed and sound these acts are known for. The guitar shenanigans are impressive, although it's unlikely a novice would be able to tell contributors apart without a track list. But there is a somewhat chilly, almost soulless feel to much of this. Many artists, although playing in top form, seem to be disconnected from the passion and fire that made the originals so powerful. According to the notes, some of the guitarists overdubbed their solos after the rhythm section laid down its parts, which would account for the lack of cohesion between the band and soloist. This surely isn't a deal-breaker for the audience the disc is geared to, but as usual with these projects, the covers generally pale next to their predecessors. Additionally, only Walter Trout ("Brush with the Blues") and Warren Haynes ("The Pump") emerge from a blues background as Beck did (the others come from jazz or rock), and that adds to the slightly sterile performances that highlight form over heart. Nevertheless, this is hit more than miss, and for guitar technicians and students, just hearing the likes of Steve Morse, Eric Johnson, Mike Stern, and Greg Howe tear into Beck's classic tunes is enough to make even the most jaded player salivate. ~ Hal Horowitz Various Artists: Stuart Hamm (bass guitar); Jeff Richman, Mitchel Forman, Simon Phillips , Vinnie Colaiuta. Personnel: Chris Duarte, Eric Johnson , Greg Howe, Jeff Richman, Adam Rogers, Mike Stern, Steve Morse, Walter Trout, Warren Haynes, John Scofield (guitar); Mitchel Forman (keyboards); Simon Phillips , Vinnie Colaiuta (drums). Audio Mixers: Simon Phillips ; Paul Tavenner. Recording information: Blue Forest Studio, Sherman Oaks, CA; Dual-Core Opteron Processors; Ian London Studios, New York, NY; Kessler Media, Katonah, NY; Phantom Studios, Sherman Oaks, CA; Saucer Sound, Austin, TX. Photographers: Jeff Richman; Innis Nelson; Steve Jennings; Max Crace. Arranger: Jeff Richman. Additional personnel: John Scofielf (guitar); Chris Duarte, Eric Johnson , Greg Howe, Adam Rogers, Mike Stern, Steve Morse, Walter Trout, Warren Haynes. Track Listing 1 Freeway Jam 2 Over Under Sideways Down 3 Beck's Bolero 4 Led Boots 5 Becko, El 4:43 6 Diamond Dust 7 Pump 8 Behind the Veil 9 Blue Wind 3:55 10 Brush With The Blues CD Universe Part number 7457428 Label Tone Center Orig Year 2007 Catalog number 4057 Discs 1 Release Date Jul 17, 2007 Studio/Live Studio Mono/Stereo Stereo Producer Jeff Richman Engineer Simon Phillips; Scott Cresswell; Simeon Speigel; Ken Wallace; Richard Mullen; Rocco Cambaren; Stephan Nordin; Simon Phillips; Scott Cresswell Recording Time 55 minutes
The Loner On this compilation a bunch of first-class musicians pay their tribute to one of the best and outstanding guitar-players and musicians around. With 13 tracks Jeff Beck’s work is highlighted from different angles. Release Date: 2005 Track Listing 1. Brett Garsed & T.J. Helmerich / Vicoden(Huh? ed.)3:27 2. Alex Gunia / Cause We've Ended As Lovers 7:10 3. Richie Kotzen & Greg Howe / Led Boots 4:36 4. Ray Russell / Snow 6:45 5. Fernando Pareta / Brush With The Blues 5:32 6. Tribal Tech / Song Holy Hall 4:58 7. Rick Peckham / Head For A Backstage Pass 6:07 8. Derek Sherinian / Star Cycle 5:04 9. David Fiuczynski / My Heavy Heart 6:47 10. Niacin / Blue Wind 5:52 11. Trinity / Dinner For Jeff 7:00 12. Keith More / Farewell 6:18 13. Jeff Richman / Pygmy People 5:39
Jeffology: Jeff Beck Tribute Released Feb 13, 1996 on the Shrapnel Label. JEFFOLOGY is a tribute to Jeff Beck. Performers include: Bruce Bouillet, Vivian Campbell, Phil Collen, Warren DeMartini, Paul Gilbert, Jake E. Lee, Steve Lukather, George Lynch, Mick Mars, Stevie Salas, Walter Trout, Greg Bissonette, Russ Parrish, Jeff Martin, Tony Franklin, Sass Jordan, Billy Sherwood. Track Listing 1 New Ways Train Train 2 Led Boots 3 Heart Full of Soul 4 Cause We've Ended As Lovers 5:42 5 Blues DeLuxe 6 Head For Backstage Pass 7 People Get Ready 4:10 8 Rice Pudding 9 Shapes of Things 10 Behind the Veil 11 Happenings Ten Years Time Ago 2:58 CD Universe Part number 1037960 Label Shrapnel Orig Year 1996 Discs 1 Release Date Feb 13, 1996 Studio/Live Studio Mono/Stereo Stereo Recording Time 50 minutes
The day was the first visit to Japan Jeff Beck showed off the BBA, in 1973. This work JAPAN LIVE famous in the world to capture the precious moments of rock history was recorded performance in Osaka Welfare Pension Hall of the 18th and 19th in May 1973. It is re-released on a luxury package to celebrate the 40 anniversary. * Tomoo Suzuki, who worked on recording & mix at the time, created the DSD master was added to the EQ / compressor again from the original analog master. In addition, the dynamics that have been recorded on the tape is re-mastered (for the first time in nine years) have revived the maximum at the optimum appearance. * It was forced to significantly change song order because it was four side two sets at the time of release. The first time, it is recorded in the track order as they played, Besides, you can listen without stopping at the Disc 1 the main part. * Inclusion tour pamphlet at this time is resized and reprinted. * Paper jacket 7 inch analog single size that faithfully reproduces the original artwork. * Luxurious booklet The engineers Tomoo Suzuki and director Yuji Takahashi of the CBS Sony untold story of the recording at that time in conversation style. The cover copy of MUSIC LIFE Japan and the interview issue at the time. Such as comments from Tim Bogert and Carmine Appice that was sent for this work and treasured photos are posted. Specification: Limited Edition. 2013 remastered. Blu-spec 2CD. Resized reprint 7 inches analog single-size paper jacket, the tour pamphlet. Disc 1 1. Superstition 2. Livin' Alone 3. I'm So Proud 4. Lady 5. Morning Dew 6. Sweet Sweet Surrender 7. Lose Myself With You 8. Black Cat Moan 9. Jeff's Boogie 10. Why Should I Care Disc 2 1. Going Down 2. Prince / Shotgun (Medley) 3. Boogie
Okay, now we're going to show you some pics from the booklets that accompany the dics that were taken for us by our bud R.E. Barnes but I (Bill) would be remiss if I didn't pass on this story first. The release of the 'BBA Live In Japan' 2 Lp set in 1973, only in Japan, was the pivotal moment that sent Dick Wyzanski on his now 40 year treasure hunt to ferret out all things Jeff Beck. Now we have been fans of Jeff since the Yardbirds. Not only bought all their U.S. albums but all the imports as well. We became fanatics during the Jeff Beck Group (MK I and MK II) years. But when 'BBA Live In Japan' came out only in Japan, Dick learned a little effort and a few phone calls could go a long way. Dick in 1973 was a freshman at the University of North Carolina, Charlotte. Because he was into music he became somewhat involved in their campus radio station. So, when the album came out and knowing he had to have it a copy, he called CBS/Sony in Japan (from his dorm) and told them he was making a radio documentary about Jeff Beck and that a copy of the album would be great material to include. This of course was complete bullshit. But it worked! And they sent out two copies of the double Lp to him via New York. Now Dick waits but the records don't arrive. In investigating he finds out they were absconded by someone in New York. Dick now calls the president of CBS Records in New York! He tells him he's on a schedule, needs the albums yada, yada, yada, (more bullshit) and bingo they send two copies from New York to him at UNCC. Brilliant! He now has two copies of a record practically no one in the states has. I remember when he came back home on a break and we listened to that record over and over again. Dick even contacted our favorite Boston FM rock station WBCN telling them he had a copy and if they wanted to play any of it. A DJ at the time, Maxanne said, "Sure, bring it in" and Dick did. Before playing it they insisted on buying it from him which, since he had two, he did for like $20. That copy of 'BBA Live In Japan' ended up being a Christmas present from Maxanne to Joe Perry of Aerosmith!
Our friend Toshi sent us a series of reports from most of the Japanese shows...here are his reports.
NKH Hall, Tokyo, April 4th, 2014.
The show of tonight was great. Nicolas playing midi guitar, so this four piecs is the same as Jennifer era. But this band is very tight and heavy.
Amashin Archaic Hall, Osaka, April 5th, 2014.
Jeff used three guitars on the stage. Main stratocaster, a different key stratocaster on Little Wing and a white telecaster on Loaded. Nicolas played Japanese song “Sakura Sakura” intro of Yemin. Sakura means cherry tree in Japanese. April in Japan is season for cherry trees to blossom.
Japan Dome City Hall, Tokyo, April 7th, 2014.
The show of tonight was also great! Choral was first appearance song. I was able to get two pases, thanks to Peter and you. But I was not able to meet Jeff. He did not come out from his room. Because, Jimmy Page was in Jeff’s room!!! I was happy. I was able to meet Jonathan and Nicolas. They were so kind to me. And I saw Jeff and Rhonda and Jimmy Page.
Japan Dome City Hall, Tokyo, April 8th, 2014.
The show of tonight was also brilliant. The set list is the same as Osaka, but Jeff played Jeff’s Boogie only 15 seconds after Big Block.
Japan Dome City Hall, Tokyo, April 9th, 2014.
The show of tonight was filmed. Jeff’s guitar play was absolutely brilliant. Looking forward DVD.
Japan Nitori Bunker Hall, Sapparo, April 11, 2014.
The show of tonight was great and amazing. The first appearance new song “Egyptian” is middle eastern.
Japan Yokohama Pacifico, Yokohama, April 14, 2014.
The show of tonight was great. I was able to get two passes from Jonathan. Me and Atsu were kept waiting in the catering room after show. Jonathan and Nicolas came to the room. Jeff and Rhonda did not come to the room but we had a really good time.
April 14 PACIFICO YOKOHAMA 1.Loaded(new) 2.Nine(new) 3.Little Wing 4.You Know You Know 5.Hammerhead 6.Angel(Footsteps) 7.Stratus 8.Yemin 9.Where Were You 10.Egyptian(new) 11.Goodbye Pork Pie Hat/Brush With The Blues 12.You Never Know 13.Danny Boy 14.Why Give It Away(new) 15.Led Boots 16.Choral(new) 17.Big Block 18.A Day In The Life -encore- 19.Rollin' And Tumblin' 20.Cause We've Ended As Lovers
Nagoya Civic Assembly Hall, Nagoya, April 15, 2014.
Tonight’s show was awesome. The setlist has not changed since Sapporo. Ross Halfin was taking the photograph tonight and last night.
Osaka Festival Hall, Osaka, April 16, 2014.
Tonight’s show was really amazing. Jeff’s Japan tour is over. I had a great time thanks to Jeff, Jonathan, Nicolas, Rhonda, Peter and YOU! Thank you very much! I hope they come to Japan when new album will be released. Ross Halfin was taking the photograph tonight also. I heard that Jeff drank with Bob Dylan in Nagoya last night.
Bob Dylan Japan Tour 2014 Zepp Diver City,Tokyo March 31,April 1,3,4,5,7,8,9,10 Zepp Sapporo April 13,14 Zepp Nagoya April 17,18 Zepp Fukuoka April 19 Zepp Namba,Osaka April 21,22,23
April 16 Festival Hall, Osaka 1.Loaded(new) 2.Nine(new) 3.Little Wing 4.You Know You Know 5.Hammerhead 6.Angel(Footsteps) 7.Stratus 8.Yemin 9.Where Were You 10.Egyptian(new) 11.Goodbye Pork Pie Hat/Brush With The Blues 12.You Never Know 13.Danny Boy 14.Why Give It Away(new) 15.Led Boots 16.Choral(new) 17.Big Block 18.A Day In The Life -encore- 19.Rollin' And Tumblin' 20.Cause We've Ended As Lovers
We got these great shots from our friend Shigehiro Mikoshiba from Jeff's gig in Osaka April 16, 2014.
Another of our Japanese friends Hidecki Konno sent us some pics of Japanese Jeff Beck fan Yukinori who was at the aftershow of the Iwate gig. This was the first time Jeff had performed in that city. Yukinori brought with him a brand new Fender Jeff Beck Stratocaster which he had the whole band including Jeff sign. Yukinori has another Jeff Beck Strat that he had signed by Jeff during the Emotion And Commotion tour after winning an aftershow pass from a record company. That first Strat survived an earthquake that destroyed Yukinori's house shortly after that tour! We are told Yukinori is planning to aution off this new Strat with the proceeds going to Folly Wildlife Rescue, stayed tuned for details.
Rex Theater, Paris, France, May 27th, 2014.
Our good friend and webpage contributor R.E. Barnes attended Jeff's May 27th show at the Rex Theater in Paris, France. He went with his friend keyboardist/composer Wally Badarou who worked with Jeff on Mick Jagger's first solo album "She's the Boss" recorded at Compass Point Studios in Nassau, Bahamas where R.E. lives. R.E. first saw Jeff in one of his last performances with the Yardbirds in 1966 at Dallas Memorial Auditorium. You can read about R.E. being a (really) long time Jeff Beck fan here. Never met Jeff until now... here's some pics from the night and R.E.'s report.
I was excited to see that my plans to visit old friends in Paris this May coincided with Jeff Beck’s European tour. I was going to be staying with my old friend Wally Badarou for part of the visit, so I decided to get us tickets for his family and me to see Jeff at the Rex in Paris. The Rex is a very old cinema in Paris that is also a venue for classical music acts. Jeff had played there previously, so he obviously was comfortable with the sound and the venue. The songs were the same ones that have previously been noted from Dick’s England shows. The addition of Sophie Delila to a couple of songs was the only addition to his regular band. As always, Jeff’s show was superb and for Wally seeing him the first time in concert, he was truly moved by the songs and Jeff’s delivery. I almost had the feeling that Wally was ready to join him onstage and play keyboards for him.
Wally Badarou is a synthesizer genius who lived in Nassau back in the 80’s. He has worked with many great artists. Joe Cocker, Foreigner, Robert Palmer, Talking Heads, Level 42, Grace Jones, as well as his solo records. He was one of the house band at Compass Point Recording Studio back then. They were known as the Compass Point All Stars and they were Chris Blackwell’s idea for a great house band to help artists who came to record at his studio, much like the famous house band at Motown’s studio. Wally was the keyboard man, Sly and Robbie out of Jamaica were the rhythm section and various guitar players, like Barry Reynolds came to make up the group. The Rolling Stones had recorded at Compass Point and so when Mick Jagger did his first solo LP, he went to Nassau to record. Jeff Beck was invited in to play guitar along with a number of stellar musicians. Wally told me that when he was putting in his own “in-house” studio near to Compass Point he had a couple of surprise visitors one day. He had just finished soldering the last patch on his home studio when there was a knock at the door. He opened it to find Mick and Jeff standing there. They came in to see what he was doing and Wally said before he had even had a chance to play on his just finished setup, that Jeff sat down and was in fact the first one to play on his Oppenheimer synthesizer. Though they both appeared on Mick’s solo album, they were never in the studio at the same time, as both of them did overdubs all the time.
Thanks to you Dick, and Peter Mackay, we were given passes to go backstage after the show. After winding our way through the catacombs of the Rex, we finally got to the artist waiting room. I bumped into Jonathan Joseph who I had chatted with in Ft Lauderdale last year on the Jeff - Brian Wilson tour. I said hello and remembered Dick to him and that we had met in Florida last year. After a while Rhonda came in, but moved on fairly quickly. Nicholas also came in and at last Jeff walked in with Sophie. I had the feeling he wanted her near for translation, but it was not needed. He had a champagne glass and a bottle of Piper Heidsieck in his hands. A few fellows got photos and autographs and eventually Wally and I got a chance to say hello. Jeff remembered Wally from the Jagger recordings, but was thinking it had been in Barbados, confusing the Bahamas where it was located. I guess these things run together after a while and one tropical studio becomes the same as another. Wally mentioned that Jeff had been the first person to use his personal studio next to Compass Point when he and Mick had come up to say hello and Jeff recalled seeing him there. They spoke for a while about the recording with Mick and how it had been hard to get things together for the recording, because Mick was always running around trying to coordinate things. Wally and Jeff also spoke briefly of Jan Hammer. Wally had felt he was sort of shy which surprised Jeff. They ended up concluding that perhaps Jan had been intimidated a bit by Jagger. Wally mentioned that sadly Compass Point Studio had closed and Jeff was shocked to hear of it. (This was one of the great recording studios of the world and had hosted some incredible musicians through the years). I mentioned that it was a great loss and told Jeff that Wally and I had both been friends with the late Robert Palmer, who lived across from the studio in the 80’s. I mentioned that Robert had played me a cassette of Escape months before its release on Flash. Jeff had given it to him. Jeff had asked Robert if he wanted to sing on Flash, but Robert was reluctant to do so. I also told him that I had been a fan for a long time and that in fact the first rock show I had seen was Jeff in the Yardbirds on the horrible Dick Clark Tour. I said that I understood he had left the Yardbirds very shortly after that show. Jeff then related how he had hated the tour. How they were on a bus for 600 miles a day some times and would only play for 15 minutes. That he found out Dick Clark was a millionaire and he was clearly upset with how they were slogged from place to place in a cramped tour bus with all these other groups. He said when he got to L.A. after leaving the Yardbirds, he passed by Clark’s mansion and Jeff thumbed his nose at Clark. Jeff said it all now with a laugh, but it had clearly been a sore point back then. I told him how much I had liked hearing all the new music and that I hoped we would get a new CD soon, to which he said nothing I’m afraid. I said he always seems to attract some amazing musicians to work with him. He said he could never have believed that he would still be doing this and playing with the people he has played with. His look was both appreciative of how fortunate he felt he is and pure joy at his good life. It was a great pleasure to at last meet someone who I have admired for so long. To find that he is a gentleman as well only made me feel all the better for having been lead on the wonderful musical journey he has had me on for nearly fifty years now. I could only say thank you. I’m glad the journey will continue this summer when I see Jeff in Denver and Ft Lauderdale.
Byron Bay Bluesfest, Byron Bay, Australia, April 19, 2014.
Two reviews from m.northernstar.com.au....
CENTRE STAGE: Jeff Beck tears it up on guitar in the Crossroads Tent at the Byron Bay Bluesfest on Saturday night.Marc Stapelberg Every inch the rock star - bejewelled wrist, shades, puffy shirt - Jeff Beck let his fingers do the talking, moving all over the fretboard, thumb doing the heavy lifting, sending us into guitar virtuoso heaven. The man Clapton and Keith Richards look up to wasn't the only guitar wonder on the stage. For the first time he's recruited a second axe man, Nicholas Meier, who provided a light, exotic accompaniment to Beck's heavier noise, and an especially lyrical intro to Hendrix's Little Wing. The very funky bass player Rhonda Smith took care of what little vocal work there was, including the blues number that began the encore, a meld of Rolling and Tumbling and Dust My Broom. Other recognisable tunes included Danny Boy, slowed down to a syrupy groove but managing to retain that song's pathos. There was a great tribute to a great song, The Beatles' A Day in the Life, with suitable crashing crescendo, and a climax featuring Joss Stone putting every ounce of her soul into I Put a Spell on You. Beck made the 90 minutes go by too fast. The lucidity of his playing, the timbre and range were exquisite at times. In a festival line-up featuring a good many serious guitar heroes, he was outstanding. *********************************************************************** FROM the first ominous chords from his white Stratocaster, the wayward son of the 60s British blues explosion had the Crossroads Tent crowd riveted on Saturday night. Every inch the rock star - bejewelled wrist, shades, puffy shirt - Jeff Beck let his fingers do the talking, moving all over the fretboard, thumb doing the heavy lifting, sending us into guitar virtuoso heaven. The man Clapton and Keith Richards look up to wasn't the only guitar wonder on the stage. For the first time he's recruited a second axe man, Nicholas Meier, who provided a light, exotic accompaniment to Beck's heavier noise, and an especially lyrical intro to Hendrix's Little Wing. The very funky bass player Rhonda Smith took care of what little vocal work there was, including the blues number that began the encore, a meld of Rolling and Tumbling and Dust My Broom. Other recognisable tunes included Danny Boy, slowed down to a syrupy groove but managing to retain that song's pathos. There was a great tribute to a great song, The Beatles' A Day in the Life, with suitable crashing crescendo, and a climax featuring Joss Stone putting every ounce of her soul into I Put a Spell on You. Beck made the 90 minutes go by too fast. The lucidity of his playing, the timbre and range were exquisite at times. In a festival line-up featuring a good many serious guitar heroes, he was outstanding.
Perth Concert Hall, Perth, Australia, April 24, 2014.
A review by Gazman Campbell.....
LIVE REVIEW: JEFF BECK, Perth, 24 April 2014 Perth Concert Hall, Thursday 24 April, 2014 Reviewed by Gazman Campbell Photos by Awakening Vixen Photography It’s not every day you get to see a true living legend of the rock era but today would be my 2nd chance to catch Mr Jeff Beck- rock & roll survivor & genuine guitar hero – live !!! Unlike his last gig at this venue there was no support act, which made my job easier. The lights faded, the band started up the first tune, Loaded & out strutted Jeff Beck from the side of the stage, playing a white Fender Telecaster. This little faux pas was quickly corrected as the guitar tech handed him the more familiar white Stratocaster – probably a Jeff Beck Signature – & the band ran through their next choice – Nine. Another white Strat was put to stunning use as JB led the band through an amazing version of the Hendrix classic Little Wing. You Know, You Know, Hammerhead & Angels Footsteps followed as JB informed us the guitar changes were for different tunings. Billy Cobham’s Stratus was one of the few tunes I actually recognised – the lack of lyrics can make it hard to identify selections in what was essentially an instrumental only performance, bar one song sung by bass player extraordinaire Rhonda Smith. Speaking of his hand picked touring band, Jonathan Joseph is a drumming tour de force with more fills than a drive in petrol attendant & an uncanny sense of timing, while rhythm guitar duties were more than stunningly assumed by Nicholas Meier – whom I suspect is a Godin endorsed player judging by his nice choice of weapons (yes, I have one too). Where Were You, Egyptian, Pork Pie Hat/Brush With Blues & You Never Know, were all well received as was the entire near 2 hour set as Beck showed why he is one of the worlds most respected players & kept all present entranced with his digital dexterity. More Beck faves rounded out a very entertaining concert culminating with his version of The Beatles, A Day In The Life. Returning to centre stage for the obligatory encore, Rollin’ & Tumblin’ gave the musical smorgasbord an awesome blues dessert, before ending the night with the stunningly played Cause We Ended As Lovers. According to some of our own muso’s present, myself included, this gig was certainly one to remember.
on made it to Perth; albeit sadly without his east coast support - Beth Hart; to put on a show that just underlined the endless possibilities of what a man can do with a guitar… JEFF BECK SETLIST: Loaded | Nine | Little Wing (The Jimi Hendrix Experience cover) | You Know You Know | People Get Ready (The Impressions cover) | Hammerhead | Angel (Footsteps) | Stratus (Billy Cobham cover) | Arirang | Yemin | Where Were You | Egyptian | Goodbye Pork Pie Hat (Charles Mingus cover) | Brush with the Blues | Danny Boy | (Ernestine Schumann-Heink cover) | You Never Know | Choral | Big Block | A Day in the Life (The Beatles cover) ENCORE: Rollin' and Tumblin' (Hambone Willie Newbern cover) | Cause We've Ended as Lovers (Syreeta cover) ********************************************************************
South Korea Olympic Hall, Seoul, April 26, 2014.
Being an animal lover it was easy for me to embrace the opportunity of a lifetime to have a personalized tour of the Folly Wildlife Animal Rescue shelter and hospital located in the countryside south of London near some sprawling estates including that of Jeff and Sandra Beck’s Riverhall. So Sunday May 11th Dean Opper, Alan Sholiton and I………oh by the way did I mention I went to England. Surprise...I didn’t hardly tell anyone I was traveling with Dean and Alan until just about there. Anyways we traveled by train to the Tunbridge Wells station where we were picked up by Folly part time volunteer, full time supporter, and also full time fan of Jeff Beck, Hideki Konno and his wife who just happen to live nearby.
We arrived at the facility within a few minutes out of town and were met by Annette Risley who along with her husband (not there that day) run the Folly's day to day operation. We actually started the tour thinking we wouldn’t be interrupted by anything but...surprise again...I had not expected to speak to see her until the afternoon for tea somewhere local but someone said she just pulled up. So I quickly walked out to the parking lot and was warmly greeted by a lovely and smiling Mrs. Sandra Beck!
For the next hour and a half or so we toured all the different rooms with the animals, many of which were either nursing or had been orphaned. It mattered not that some of them could be quite defensive as so in their natural habitat like the foxes, or downright ornery like a full grown badger. Babies, hatchlings, full growns, and of course the cute favorites, the hedgehogs, all were shown love and care. As we passed the orphaned pheasants Annette noted that they were slated to be released at Riverhall when they were able. My favorite was the juvenile badger. It drawled around both Annette’s and Sandra’s arms in search of comfort, not yet to the size of being able to fend for itself. Well this was after all a musical journey from the US this Beckology 2014 tour so I couldn’t resist saying, “You know this lady’s husband (pointing to Sandra) once played a session on a record (White Lady) for a group Badger (Jeff bassist mate Kim Gardner’s RIP band) in the mid 70’s”
More animals later it was finally time to leave. We then decided that we should all do lunch in Tunbridge Wells. Not being able all to squeeze in Hideki’s vehicle I got the thrill and honor of a lifetime……a ride in the purple PT Land Cruiser “Beckmobile” complete with Sandra at the wheel..on the right side...got a proper English car ride back into town!.
I now know why they call New England just that…New England. Tunbridge Wells is the spitting image of my hometown feel of Marblehead, Massachusetts with all it’s quaint eateries, antique type shops, historical buildings, and windy streets. We stopped at a quiet restaurant and took up the back room with everyone eager to eat lunch and hang out with Sandra.
She told us of her youth in that her father was a graphic arts designer, surely where she got her talent for portrait painting. He had once designed an Lp cover for a certain guitarist who came to her house as a child. However nothing came of it...except Sandra remembering seeing Jimi Hendrix at her house! Being married to a musical sort of guy...ya think?...Sandra was asked if she played any instruments. She mentioned that she would get on drums and jam with Jeff and Celia Hammond! A nice surprise was gleaned when Sandra told us some of her favorite music was Glen Miller and that genre of music. Everyone was looking forward to the coming shows... none more than Sandra. She said the timing of this day worked out well for her as Jeff was in flight back from the Brazil Blues Fest gig. We also spoke of our mutual love of coffee and that Jeff drinks it too. I mentioned it was part of my health anti aging bit regimen. Finally it was time to leave. We strolled back to the parking garage and took some last photos reminding that we would see each other two days later at the tour opener in Southend . Another big hug and she was off. What a truly inspiring day. Back to London where we will be bringing you prequels with the savior of Fender’s fortunes in the 80’s John Hill, long time Jeff Beck confidant/guitar minder Al Dutton, and sequels of the shows themselves complete with a cast of Beckology characters Neil Murray, Ralph Baker, Martin Power, Jimmy Copley, Ian Jennings, Sophie Delila, current band of Jonathan Joseph, Rhonda Smith, Nicolas Meier, the delightful PA Holly and Jonathan’s wife Wendy Joseph, tour manager Peter Mackay... many more...and oh yeh some bloke named Jeff. Hah!
For more information about Folly Wildlife Rescue, visit their website at;
Be seeing you...
Arriving in London 10 May 2014 with travel partners Dean Opper and Alan Sholiton, we checked into the Regency Hotel down the street from the Royal Albert Hall and surrounding Hyde Park areas. With jet lag hitting us like a bunch of drunken sailors only one solution...road trip. My companions quickly learned that this whole UK trip to catch the first four Jeff Beck and Band shows in England wasn’t all just about that. With locals who had, have, or will continue to be a part of the grand scheme of things…Beckology! This was a once in a life opportunity to round up as many live chats as I could.
We took a cab down to the British Museum grounds and sauntered into the café on the North West corner. Sitting waiting to greet us was long time Jeff Beck Guitar tech, tour manager, personal manager and confidante Al Dutton along with erstwhile Fender marketing, artist relations and design guru, and extant Fender scholar, John Hill.
John and Al have been close since the early eighties when Fender was struggling to keep its market share against a deluge of CNC Japanese guitar manufacturers and influential artists like Eric Clapton and Jeff Beck were playing Giffins and Jacksons. John, a schooldays friend of drummer Simon Phillips, knew Jeff previously but moved into Air Studios in earnest when Simon and Jeff were recording 'There And Back' and started to bring Fender guitars and amps into the studio. From his knowledge and personal interactions with various British guitar greats and their techs, John understood what Fender executives did not which was, to get artists like Jeff Beck to play and endorse current Fender guitars instead of making new designs and configurations, they’d have to go back to the vintage golden era for look & feel and build quality and even the treasured ‘spaghetti’ Fender logo that had got lost when CBS took over Leo Fender’s Orange County company and begun the virtual destruction of all that had made them great. CBS, John explained, thought they were in the furniture business machining wooden objects, whereas I tried to explain to them that guitarists had an emotional relationship with their wooden objects - they were the instruments of dreams! The CBS-era instruments had basically lost the essence of Leo’s original, simple but brilliant, ideas. So, encouraged by Al, John started to interest Jeff and Eric Clapton and the British guitar greats in a new vintage which took pre-CBS values and turned them into a post-CBS reverence and attention to detail and eventually hand made one-offs for Jeff and Eric gave birth to the Fender Custom Shop and eventually production vintage and thus Fender was on its way to a new success and thanks to John all the great British guitar players were on board on the same basis of returning to vintage and even rubbing the lacquer off the necks of these new guitars and chipping the paint himself to make them look less ‘brand new’ and more aged-in or what became ‘reliced’.
In the early days of the project at Air Studios, Alan had lined-up the guitars John was bringing to the studio and Jeff picked up each guitar and muttered afterwards that the only one worth keeping...was usually the, exclusive to Europe, Fender Squires at that time. John pleaded with Fender and finally the signature series was hatched taking Jeff’s specifications and painstakingly crafting them into the old way of making Stratocasters and Telecasters. John monitored and advised every step of the way with Jeff’s specs, Eric’s specs and many others. Fender owes a deep debt of gratitude to John for all his vision and perseverance in forging these long-term relationships that revived the brand.
Speaking of guitar stories Alan had a real doozy. It seems the Hard Rock in NYC was bugging Jeff to give them a guitar back in the 80’s. At the time Jeff was riding around with Alan in this one Corvette with a white Strat in the back seat. Somehow Jeff ditched that car in outside storage and started driving around another one. One day they happened to be looking inside the stored Vette and realized that’s where that Strat had gone off too! It was all filthy dirty. They couldn’t just donate that Strat to the Hard Rock in that condition but didn’t want to part with a brand spanking new one either. So Alan took the guitar apart and added back in a Roland neck from the myriads of parts that Roland had given Jeff in the past. The body was polished up a bit and the guitar was given to the Hard Rock as a Jeff Beck Strat. Sometime later Jeff and Alan were sitting back at that Hard Rock in the city and glanced up at the display. The guitar that was in the case was not the guitar they donated. Instead there was a shiny new white Strat. Alan exclaimed. That’s not the guitar. We know a shitty guitar when we see one and that’s not a shitty guitar. Apparently “someone” from the Hard Rock took that guitar for themselves thinking Jeff had actually played it and replaced it with a stock Strat. Hah!
Another Al guitar story involved the famous Buddy Davis Ox Blood Gibson Les Paul seen on the cover of Blow By Blow. (Al says “hello Buddy and all the best mate”) The axe was actually at one point in time headed for the garbage bin as the neck broke on an airplane flight. Al took it to a physically challenged guitar maker and wound up salvaging the guitar which Jeff still has in his collection.
Al told us a story about the days when he and Jeff took up residence in the late seventies in LA. They stayed in a house not far away from the Hyatt House which was known, Al pointed out, as the Riot House because all the big bands would stay there and party (destroy) the place until six in the morning when another band would arrive and keep the party continuously going. He thinks it was Cozy Powell who was with Rainbow and others by then was the first one to come up with a quieter place for those who wanted to chill and introduced Jeff and he to the Sunset Marquis which is now Jeff’s favorite hangout in LA with Jed Lieber’s in house basement studio there available for recording/rehearsing and sorting things out.
John and Al took us for a walk down Oxford St and the neighborhood where we saw the outside of the original 100 Club, a favorite of Jeff's and bands of the day. There was some youngin's lined up outside to see a show. We stopped outside Ronnie Scott's and took a few photos and wound up at the Marquee Club which is now a restaurant with old band displays. Actually there were three Marquee Clubs: An original which is now a store front, a later version which is marked only by a single round plaque commemorating Keith Moon, and the modern tourist one turned restaurant where we all had our respective drinks...me with coffee of course.
We asked Al how did the thought process of music projects go in the 80 s and 90s when there was so little LP production and touring. Al said that he and Jeff and occasionally a few close friends would sit around and just throw out ideas. Sometimes Jeff would act upon them with a few jams being arranged and others never seemed to materialize. It got to the point where Alan just prior to the 1998-2000 tours was being asked basically to be on retainer for nothing but as he put it “coming down to Riverhall to mow the lawn.” Unfortunately there were some hard times for Alan personally and he had to focus more on family life and his young son, inevitably having little or no time to work with Jeff when the calls came. However Al is still in London, getting healthier than ever, and now his son Joe is a budding heavy metal musician and guitarist himself. I told him I had mentioned him to Jeff last Sept at the Hard Rock Brian Wilson tour rehearsals in Florida and Jeff seemed interested to know that Al was still alive and kickin and around. Hopefully these kindred spirits will spend more time together again soon, as they did at Jeff’s wedding. Al hasn’t changed his phone number and still lives in London.
As we made our way back down guitar shop row known as ‘Tin Pan Alley’ where Jeff Buckley played in a tiny room in 1994, and in the 60s The Stones and The Who recorded, they have vintage guitars lining shop windows. John Hill, who is also a musicologist, gave us a brief but fascinating history lesson on how it’s no accident that London these days has 30,000 musical performances a year and such great venues, universities and institutions, it’s thanks in fact to the Victorians and the huge wealth that came into London as the capital of the vast British Empire. Great venues like the Royal Albert Hall were directly funded by Queen Victoria’s husband Prince Albert’s Great Exhibition in Hyde Park that showed off the engineering, resources and artisanship of the British Empire and its colonies and dependencies plus the United States. The 21 acres of glass enclosed exhibition space started World Fairs and the exhibition industry and made so much money from over 6m entry tickets that it directly built and funded the Royal Albert Hall, The Royal College of Music, The Natural History Museum, The Science Museum, The Victoria & Albert Museum and Imperial College (where Brian May met Roger Taylor) conglomerately known as Albertopolis. In previous history, concerts had only ever been for a select few in palaces but now the growing Victorian middle classes had chamber concerts in their homes and the new concert venues were open to everyone for the price of a ticket. London alone had 200 piano manufacturers making 500 pianos a week! So rolling forward these Victorian industrialists included Arts & Crafts advocists like Ruskin and Morris who founded the Fabian Society, a socialist movement that led to further education for the working classes and, moving rapidly to the 60s, these arts schools and technical colleges were where Keith Richards, Jeff Beck, Eric Clapton, Mick Jagger, David Bowie, Syd Barret, Jimmy Page et al were meeting and forming bands as London became the centre of the universe once again for a new generation revolutionising fashion and music, media, and design and you know the rest.
We thank John Hill and Alan Dutton for a truly great afternoon. They have been and who knows will hopefully again be a part of the continuing Beckology saga, artists in their own right and hell of a nice guy both of them. All the best mates!!
Be seeing you...
(Video clips from other cities not on the UK tour are included due to lack of availability.)
Click On Set List Song
Actual YouTube Links
YOU KNOW YOU KNOW (Kanagawa)
ANGEL FOOTSTEPS (Dublin - partial)
WHERE WERE YOU (Tokyo)
GOODBYE PORKPIE HAT/BRUSH WITH THE BLUES
YOU NEVER KNOW
DANNY BOY (Seoul, S. Korea)
WHY GIVE IT AWAY
ROLLIN AND TUMBLIN
BIG BLOCK (Tokyo)
'CAUSE WE'VE ENDED AS LOVERS
A DAY IN THE LIFE
YOU'LL NEVER WALK ALONE
YOU KNOW YOU KNOW (Kanagawa)
HAMMERHEAD (Bluesfest Byron Bay Australia)
ANGEL FOOTSTEPS (Tokyo)
YEMIN (Bluesfest Byron Bay Australia)
WHERE WERE YOU (Utrecht)
GOODBYE PORKPIE HAT/
BRUSH WITH THE BLUES (Koln)
YOU NEVER KNOW (Kanagawa)
DANNY BOY (Sapporo)
WHY GIVE IT AWAY (Sapporo)
LITTLE WING (Bluesfest Byron Bay Australia)
BIG BLOCK (Koln)
A DAY IN THE LIFE (Brussels)
ROLLIN AND TUMBLIN (Oxford)
'CAUSE WE'VE ENDED AS LOVERS (Paris)
Cliff's Pavillion, Southend, UK, May 13th, 2014.
Jeff Beck Band Opening Night
The merry trio of Dean Opper, Alan Sholiton, and I departed from London to settle in to some apartments away from the largely sold out and pricey Cliff’s Pavillion area on the sea where the Thames merges with the Atlantic Ocean. That evening before the show we got to the venue early enough to see the stage being set up. Unfortunately the band was very late leaving London area due to huge traffic jams and arrived barely two hours before the doors opened so understandably they didn’t want anyone around. Rehearsals still had to take place as this was crunch time, opening night and both Jeff Beck and Jonathan Joseph had just arrived back from the Sao Paulo Brazil Blues Festival the day before.
I made arrangements to have dinner at The Flying Fisherman, a 5 star Italian seafood restaurant on the picturesque waterfront. We sauntered in around 5:30PM and met rock bassist great Neil Murray who is also the sweetest nicest guy in the world. Readers can turn to our back Bulletin pages to catch Neil’s involvement with Jeff in the mid-seventies and early eighties Beckology. Fortunately he had a night off from his current just ending marathon running engagement 'We Will Rock You' the Queen Tribute show in London. It turned out Neil had invited a large group of other interesting people and musicians notably fellow British guitarists of considerable note Geoff Whitehorn And Phil Hilbourne.
Dinner ended and everyone wished each other well and it was off...to see Jeff Beck! Dean had been given permission to shoot for the shows and as this and the following segments will illustrate took some absolutely fab photos! Big Town Playboy Mike Sanchez opened the tour solo and each and every night rocked the joint with his keyboards and animated vocals.
Wendy Joseph and Sandra Beck walked up the aisle past us smiling and shortly after the stage lights dimmed. The ominous backdrop of the dynamite new Jeff Beck/Dean Garcia penned tune “Loaded” fed through the speakers. With a resounding rolling thunder from Jonathan out walked Jeff Beck with a classy vest, looking fit and exhilarated sporting a brand new Telecaster tuned down to heavy Metal D and proceeded to make the sickest sounds imaginable and as he would say “That’s doing my job.”
As they rolled through the setlist there were many high points in the show. Any worry that the band would be rusty or some would be too tired to pull off an opening night, were laughably dispelled. Rhonda Smith was absolute Bottom Thunder on her new PRS bass, funky as all get out with a sweet Fender Fretless, and angelic on the upright stick electric bass now an integral part of Jeff’s show. Nicolas had his Midi turned up for FOH extra for this tour and on his original penned tunes like The Pledge (Yemin), Egyptian, and Nine was magical. Jeff blurbed into the mic about how having Nicolas as a second guitarist somehow made he (Jeff) sound better, a nice compliment. Jonathan was nuts on Stratus and I loved his understated tasteful transitions on light tom, snare and percussion on several songs. With a musically varied set list from drone/techno to fusion to Mid Eastern to classic ballads the band proved now to the largely UK crowd that hometown boy Jeff Beck was as vibrant as ever. Sandra and I mutually spoke about that very point in awe after the show, “Where Were You” was absolutely astonishing and done to exquisite perfection on opening night!
Always one for surprises, Jeff “Delighted” the crowd bringing out young Sophie Delila to reprise both her 2012 contribution to Jeff’s EP Yosogai and hopefully the new forthcoming Lp with “Why Give It Away” totally in high gear with funk, motorcycle detuning funky jazz ninth climb downs and of course the rythym section extraordinaire!
My favorite of the show besides the previously mentioned perfect 'Where Were You' was 'Choral', haunting yet fiercely attacking. That got the crowd going for the finale’s of 'Big Block' and the show closer 'A Day In The Life'.
After tumultuous calls for encores Jeff brought back on Sophie Delila for 'Rollin and Tumblin' for which he was the teacher and schooled all the guitarists in the audience how to quickly cram every unbelievable rockabilly lick into a short minute and transition into the wailing blues of the quintessential blues and staple Jeff Beck setlist number. The only thing that could follow that...DID. Jeff volume knob swelled into the number one rated slow rock instrumental of all time 'Cause We’ve Ended As Lovers'. Jeff has taken this Stevie Wonder penned tune for Syreeta Wright and which Jeff made iconic on 'Blow By Blow' into inconceivable new heights of torn emotional jamming extending solo verse after solo verse until I could bear no more tears!
Quickly after the last notes were played we three and Hideki were escorted to the back dressing area to hang out for the festivities. I got a chance to meet Holly, Jeff’s personal PA who was a lovely charming gal. Sandra and Wendy came back and seeing that I was still visibly shaken by the show were giggling and we chatted for a bit and talked about Jeff’s upcoming birthday. She mentioned him getting a motorcycle to ride around Riverhall at the time which sounded fun. Ultimately as you can see from Sandra Beck’s Twitter page which fans are encouraged to follow, it was an even bigger thrill as Jeff got to ride in and fly an old Spitfire British War plane! The first band member to come out was Jonathan. Sophie walked by and greeted us so I got a photo op with her as well.
The fun began. Jeff was sitting on a sofa talking to a myriad of mostly younger kids and some adults. As soon as he saw me he feigned the best shake in his boots scared by a ghost imitation. “You’re a policeman tonight?” Jeff said noting my Alan donated fashionable suede jacket with light colored collar and epaulets. Being up for his game I gave him a one/two. “Jeff I heard you are spawning a whole new employment industry inside Great Britain”...I had him hook line and sinker. Puzzled he asked seriously what that was about. “You are getting tons of people to sign up as garbage collectors so they can rummage throughall your old tapes you said in an interview that you were going to throw away!”. Jeff was amused and cracked a smile but I didn’t stop there..."and I love that Tele you are playing on 'Loaded' tuned down to heavy Metal D. Now you know the D chord to go along with the E chord." That cracked the ice bucket. Jeff Beck chortled out laughter and turned to one of the kids on the side and pointed to me saying “Dick’s being funny tonight.” I then said how I felt great having been able to actually contribute something towards the new music effort as I was the one who got in touch with Dean Garcia when the APB went out for his whereabouts last fall when the new material was in it's infancy stages. Then I told Jeff how Dean Garcia had given us 'Space Clocks' from about ten years ago as well as 'Riverhall' from his new Lp Das Haus Vol II. Referring to Space Clocks Jeff said, "Yeah but that was just a groove." Then I told him how much 'Where Were You' being pulled off to perfection meant to me. Jeff Beck literally buried his face in his hands shaking his head back and forth exclaiming "I don’t know why I still do that song. It is so terribly difficult to play." When asked about the new producer he was searching for to finish off the Lp, Jeff sheepishly smiled and said "Yeah, Jeff Lynne." Jeff Lynne had appeared with Jeff Beck on a BBC morning radio show not long ago and the subject of production came up in passing while joking Jeff asked what Jeff Lynne was doing in about two weeks. That is actually how it all started. Jeff Beck told me, "I’ve already sent the tapes to LA to him." (Jeff Lynne lives in Beverly Hills) (Ed. Note: It turns out later that for whatever reason Jeff Lynne will not be the final producer. Stay tuned on that one.) It was time for a couple of pics so I handed my cell phone to Jonathan Joseph who managed to snap a couple of shots as by now everyone in the room including Jeff and I were laughing as Jonathan kept imploring us to get silly.
It was time to go. Realizing that I had come all the way from the states, Jeff took the moment to say "I really appreciate you coming." Meant a lot to me. Next installment...Jeff Beck returns to the historic Royal Albert Hall in London.
Waking up in Southend on the morning of the 14th of May after last night’s near to perfection opening night Jeff Beck and band show at Cliff’s pavilion, Dean, Alan and I sauntered over to a waterfront breakfast café. It reminded me that home, Lauderdale by the Sea in S. Florida, had brought some sunshine and warmer temperatures suddenly to the last few days spring blustery changes of the English countryside.
On the train ride back I took a moment to ring up Yardbird drummer Jim McCarty who I had hoped was going to the RAH show that evening. Jim said he had some business in France and couldn’t make it but wished he could. Then he dropped a bombshell. “You know Dick, MVD (Major Rock Music Documentary Producer/Distributer) has already interviewed me, Max Middleton, and Carmine (Appice) for Jeff’s career retrospective DVD” Wow. I thanked Jim for that and surmised which I later guessed to be correct that some executive had probably got a positive conceptual nod from Jeff at some event or gathering but nothing official. Then the company probably went out on a small budget limb just to get some background video with known peers/contemporaries. I do know who has been asked to oversee and interview Jeff directly but can’t say unfortunately at this moment. Knowing Jeff who knows if it will eventually come to pass! Al Dutton had told me in London that Peter Richardson had filmed extensively back in the late nineties when they were over in Italy touring with Peter’s humor angle to weave in to Jeff’s career but alas nothing came of that either. Early evening in London saw us take a short cab ride to the historic Royal Albert Hall where throngs were abuzz outside and in with excitement of the evenings offering. We were early so we hung out in back of Will Call. Wendy Joseph and Sandra Beck were also in the immediate vicinity so we chatted and eventually I went inside. While there I missed Rhonda Smith coming in whom I would see later. She took some pics with Dean and Alan. Meanwhile I went to the West Bar where I ran into some long time Jeff Beck fans Jeff Lyon and Lady Dawn. Also there was Ron Eve who was the engineer for the 2000 Japan tour.
I picked up the tix and passes and we went in to see Mike Sanchez do his incredible opening rock n' roll good time boogie show. Dean and Alan were in some close side of stage seats and I was left by myself (Poor me lol lol) 8th row center staring at the enormity of the historic hall now filling up with the crowd, the old organ pipes, and the grand stage.
After Mike Sanchez’s set a quick last minute check by the crew of the stage set up and shortly thereafter the grand hall lights dimmed and Jeff Beck came out in a stunning studded jacket looking ready for action. Nothing was going to beat opening night so the standard of the bar was set high. The up tempo instrumentals were all played well save a few nervous transitions in the grand old house. The crowd was appreciative but yet something was waiting to give. Just as he had done so many times in his youth in his native homeland, Jeff Beck was going to have to earn this night.
The turning point came on “Danny Boy”. A splendid heartfelt rendition, the crowd started to open up. It allowed the fun then of bringing back Sophie Delila to relax and have some fun with “Why Give It Away” and “Rollin and Tumblin” where Jeff once again took all guitarists to school on both the sick sounds in “Why Give It Away” and the rockabilly/boogie/rollin’ thunder of "Rollin' and Tumblin'".
The new song “Choral” was ethereal. Sensing Jeff now had the crowd by the short n' curlies he moaned bended as Rhonda gently prodded the base three note bass line on the stand up with the grace of an angel, Jonathan lightly tapping out the intricate myriad of percussive inflections and Nicolas, ever so more emboldened during the more up tempo numbers much to the delight of all now layering the midi elegantly as Jeff swept and soared through the clouds.
The finale "Cause We’ve Ended As Lovers" saw Jeff taking no quarter. Verse after solo verse after solo verse fiercely combative yet soft and playful brought the main show to an end as he looked for support from Rhonda and the band who were nothing but smiles that said, “Job well done Jeff”. A tumultuous three minutes of encore calls for more brought the band back out to the melancholy but uplifting surprise of the event which was Jeff’s tribute to Bob Geldoff’s fallen daughter Peaches. “I’d like to do this special for Bob” Jeff said and launched into the haunting "Declan" with the original “Who Else” Lp celtic flutist, Bob Loveday and on keyboards the subtle layers of James Pearson who coordinates the musicianship of the house of Ronnie Scott’s club. Jeff was so overcome himself that he started into another number only to look back at Rhonda in realization that first they must do "A Day In The Life". However that was not to be the grand finale as it had been at so many Jeff Beck shows over the years. One more for Bob done like no other by no other...Jeff Beck. The singular melodic notes of “You’ll Never Walk Alone" brought nary a dry eye in the house as the Jonathan Joseph rolled into and the band chimed in on another verse as Jeff gave it 1000 percent he had into the apex of gut wrenching notes and softly ended the evening like a feather falling in the forest. More tumultuous applause and Jeff introduced the band. Then muttering something to the effect that this won’t be the last time here (RAH) if you’ll have me back...Jeff saluted the crowd. Jonathan Joseph capped off the show and was not about to lose the moment as he stepped up to the microphone and uttered what was the only thing that could be exhalted at that particular moment in history...“Ladies and Gentlemen……………JEFF BECK!! (fade to tumultuous applause from the largely homespun fellow English men and women. Jeff then took to the microphone and said, "Every time I play here I think it’s going to be the last time...and you keep coming back! Thanks for your support. God Bless."
We knew rock royalty was in the house and there would be two layers of after show so we just relaxed at the second tier down at the backstage bar. First up was James Pearson, very nice chap who was thrilled to be there.
Next Jimmy Copley and I spotted each other. A warmer human being you could not meet. Big hugs how are yous and a great photo op. I told him I was going to see his mate Ian Jennings play at a club the next night as there was a tour date off.
Outside in the hall I ran into Nicolas Meier in great spirits and did the selfie thing.
About this time people started coming back from Jeff’s dressing room which was mobbed. Jimmy Copley just coming from there took the time to grin and tell me “Typical Jeff, back there with ten women”. Lol lol, lol.
Wendy and Sandra came by smiling and waving. I had missed Rhonda prior to the show so I asked tour manager Peter Mackay to tell Rhonda I would like to say hello. Boy did she. Rhonda came down the hall and I could hear her ask Peter “Where’s Dick?” Kind of surprised I was absolutely floored. She came up to me with the biggest grin and gave me the “Bow” treatment all the way limber down to the floor. I wasn’t going to let her get away with that and outdid her bowing with my stretched beyond reason hamstrings but adrenaline running and returned the greeting tenfold. Rhonda is the sweetest person in the world. We chatted briefly about her different stage basses and then posed for what turned out to be one of my favorite pics of the whole tour.
It was time to leave. Dean and Alan had already left so I was on my own. Looking for a cab, who did I run into but Jimmy Copley again with his lovely lady Caroline. I had forgot to bring my Beckology box (cardinal sin….. fifty lashes, Dick) but fortunately since then Jimmy has promised me a copy of his new 'Bad Apples' Lp along with an autograph for my Beckology box as I can’t fit any more names on the cover anyways! Lol. What a historic night at the Royal Albert Hall with acoustics, seat, and performance of a lifetime!
Bristol, UK, Colston Hall, May 16th, 2014 & Oxford, UK, New Theatre, May 17th, 2014.
After a full “Day Off” from the tour chocked full of lunch, meetings, and entertainment with former Jeff Beck manager Ralph Baker, unofficial biographer Martin Power (Hot Wired) and the incredible Ian Jennings backing Muddy Water’s son Mud in the trendy East London district at a brand new club, the trio of us set off for Bristol. Breathtaking countryside train viewing led us into the ancient city where old meets new both architecturally……and the music styles of our favorite band of course, the Jeff Beck Band.
We got to the Colston Center Hall in Bristol, Dean picked up his photo pass, and we spotted Mike Sanchez so we grabbed him for a photo op and to talk about his many experiences with Jeff Beck. He was very happy to be out on the tour and of course loved playing with Jeff on the 'Crazy Legs' Lp, the few live shows they did especially in Paris together, and Jeff’s wedding where Mike sang along with being onstage with Jimmy Page, Jeff, Jim McCarty and Paul McCartney.
As Dean moved around for photo positioning, Alan and I sat right behind the mixing board where FOH engineer Chris Privet, upon our introduction, graciously agreed to provide the board set list which has the original lighting cue inscriptions on it.
The stage dimmed and the fog machine swirled as Jeff proudly marched onstage for Loaded where Dean got some incredible photos.
The big surprise treat of the evening came when Joss Stone came out and did ‘I Put A Spell On You'. Originally that had been planned for the Royal Albert Hall show but some last minute arrangements made more sense to do the surprise in Bristol. No cameras were allowed for that one but trust me the audience went crazy and Jeff thoroughly enjoyed the moment as did the band. I would have to say from FOH that this show was the best mixed of any of the four shows on the tour. The after show found us among the most interesting of gents, the original promoter of a Devonshire Tridents show, Colin Gregory. Complete with the original hand bill with all four original Trident member autographs including Jeff’s, stating which instrument they each played including Jeff, he was thrilled to be backstage and anxious to see Jeff. Unfortunately that did not happen as Jeff was not feeling up to par after the first three shows so Jonathan took the honors of representing the band at the Meet and Greet as we all understood.
OK gang you have been waiting for a good Dick screw up story here you go. We had to change trains on the way from Bristol to Oxford. Guess what I forgot on the train as we switched platforms???? My traveling bag filled with Alan’s donation to my snazzy wardrobe for the trip. Totally bummed out I did manage to call British Railways from the Hotel Inn we stayed in Oxford and they gave me nebulous hope of having it retrieved. Fortunately my Beckology Box and other things related to were in my carry bag so how bad could it be with just the clothes on my back and jacket although the temps were warming and really didn’t need it?
Oxford is the most well manicured beautiful University town one could imagine. The downtown Hall where the show was is located in a very trendy college retail business area. Outside the venue I spotted a gent in a baseball cap and shades. He kind of looked familiar but it was he who greeted me and at last I had met my mentor, the one and only Mr. Yardbids World himself Richard Mackay. Words can’t express the gratitude I have for that man who started everything with the Yardbirds fan press and championing Jeff Beck when he left with continual documentation BBC listening and taping and helping get the word to the Trans Oceanic Trouser Press rock magazine in NYC as well as establish a base of Jeff fan interaction with two other dears who spread the word John Walsh and Ed Chapero both of NY.
There were no photo passes for the show so the last one we would just simply ENJOY. Here is the set list.
The band was on fire especially Mr. Beck who had fully recovered from after show from the last evening and strutted around the stage in command firing one sick lick after another on both the up tempo numbers and the slow ballads.
After show we went backstage where Jeff mentioned that a Tridents promoter was supposed to be backstage at some show. I piped in “Yeah Jeff, he was at the Bristol show last night” and proceeded to show Jeff his pic and the handbill. Jeff said, “Yeah, I remember that gig. I had to drive all the way out there and back all by myself”. I told Jeff how much we had appreciated the “Misssus”, Sandra, showing us around both Folly Wildlife and Tunbridge Wells. “She is amazing", Jeff said. "She takes care of EVERYTHING when I’m gone!” I got Jeff to take one more photo as he suddenly turned to me and repeated what he had said to me in Southend. “I really appreciate you coming over.”
Dean got Peter to get Jeff to sign a Japanese tour book for him and Alan went into see Rhonda. After Rhonda came out she walked up to me with her arm outstretched and gave me the commiserate “I hear you lost your baggage”. Lol I said thanks hopefully I would get it back and that Gee Rhonda, word sure does travel fast as I had told Jonathan outside in the hall as we were standing around chatting. As they were heading towards the tour bus I mentioned to tour manager Peter Mackay that the keyboardist Wally Badarou from the Bahamas now living in Paris would be at the Paris show. Wally had done the Mick Jagger solo sessions engineering on synth on the first Jagger solo Lp with Jeff and is a friend of R.E. Barnes both of whom are pictured with Jeff back in the tour reports from fans section of this issue.
Postscript to a lifetime journey to see the Greatest Guitarist On the Planet and his equally great band in England………I got the bag back about a month later. British Railways found it secured it at the London Paddington street station and Dick is dressed in fashionable jeans once again lol lol.
Be seeing you.
Chateau Ste. Michelle, Woodinville, WA, August 9, 2014.
From our friend Brian Allodi.....
The Ste. Michelle show was the 2nd date of the cut short 2014 tour. It was a beautiful but very hot day in Seattle, which was apropos for the absolutely blistering performance by Jeff and the band.
Unfortunately I was only able to obtain lawn seating as the bulk of the reserved seats were sold to Wine Club members during the presale. My buddy and I did arrive to the venue early to get in the queue so we could attempt to get decent seats, and we were lucky enough to hear (but not see) JB do 4-5 songs during sound check. I could tell just right then we were in for a treat!
We managed to get reasonably close, maybe the equivalent of row 10-15, stage right on the grass aisle separating the lawn from the reserved seats. The view of the stage was about as good as it gets for not being in a chair, and we were right in the line of sight of the PA stack so we had no problem hearing anything (other than having to cope with a few chatty ZZ Top fans sitting nearby).
Tyler Bryant kicked off the show with a short set solo acoustic set which was well-received by the crowd. He did the same a few years ago at the 2011 JB Tour in Seattle and I’d forgotten how good he is – definitely one to watch!
After a short break, the magic began as Jeff & Co took to the stage with a thundering rendition of the new tune 'Loaded', which is really growing on me. The sound was loud and clear with Jeff’s guitar front and center, but not to the detriment of the powerful rhythm section of Rhonda Smith and Jonathan Joseph. And unlike the October 2013 show in Chicago where, at least from my vantage point he was barely audible, Nicolas Meier’s supporting guitar work was very much present albeit much lower in volume. At times I had to work to hear him, but for the most part a very balanced mix (at least to my now-fragile ears – too many nights in front of Marshall stacks in my misguided youth!). His work on 'Yemin', 'Little Wing' and 'A Day in the Life' was terrific.
I honestly can’t recall the exact setlist – and I was too excited to take notes during the show – but I listed below what I BELIEVE was the setlist (pulled from another source). The set was divided up with instrumentals in the first half, and then Jimmy Hall came out for the 2nd half. Going in I was a bit skeptical about the addition of Jimmy, but given the pairing with ZZ Top – and presuming the audience would largely be there for ZZT as they were the headliner – I can understand the desire to insert some vocals into the mix. And Jimmy did not disappoint. I actually knew it was going to be great just from the snippets they did during the sound check. He really brought a new dimension to the show, and I do love it when Jeff plays off the singers – his playing is so lyrical and it’s just a master class in accompaniment when he teams up with great vocalists that push and challenge him.
Jeff Beck Setlist (best guess) Loaded Nine You Know You Know Yemin You Never Know Big Block A Day in the Life Morning Dew Why Give It Away A Change Is Gonna Come Little Wing Goin' Down Rollin' and Tumblin'
So hard to choose highlights as I thought the show was outstanding all the way through. Even though it was only the 2nd show of the US leg of their tour and they were off for a while with just a few days of rehearsals in LA, the band was SO tight. I do think that Rhonda and JJ are one of the best backing duos Jeff has had, and they were absolutely locked in. Nic’s playing was understated by very complimentary, and again I’m glad he was up in the mix more than I was expecting. All in all, a terrific BAND, not just a virtuoso playing with a few good side players.
If I have to pick, my favorite tunes were 'You Know You Know', 'Yemin', 'Morning Dew', 'Little Wing' and 'Goin’ Down' – a wonderful mix of instrumental and vocals songs IMHO, and extraordinary playing across the board on all of them. Standing ovations came a few times, particularly after some of the more well known songs like 'A Day In The Life', 'Goin’ Down' and 'Little Wing', and of course after the main set and encore. The crowd turned out to be pretty tame during Jeff’s set, which was a pleasant surprise, although there was definitely more chatter than a solo Jeff show for sure.
The mood of the crowd swiftly changed when ZZ Top hit the stage – standing and singing(???) from start to finish, and frankly I kinda tuned out. I like Billy Gibbons and the older ZZ Top stuff, and they played a fair number of those mixed with their 80’s “pop” and newer material, but… I think the sound guy must’ve turned the Master Volume up to 11 because the sound was WAY louder than Jeff’s set to the point where it was (to my ears) distorted. The vocals were barely audible (not that it mattered much with the crowd taking over vocal chores ?).
The highlight of the ZZ set was the encore when Jeff came out to join them for 'La Grange', 'Tush' and 'Jailhouse Rock'. Seemed Jeff was still trying to find his way/place with 'La Grange' & 'Tush', but he ripped off some outlandish solos and squeals that had Gibbons shaking his head – I think he just stopped playing at one point – and Jeff absolutely killed it on 'Jailhouse Rock'. Clearly Jeff and the ZZ guys enjoyed the jam, and the crowd did as well.
The event security was in full force and actively enforcing the no cameras or recording allowed mandate. I only had my iPhone 5 but managed to get a few songs recorded and some pictures – quality isn’t great given the distance and darkness, but I’ve shared the best of what I was able to get.
So a fantastic night of music; only regret was not being able to get seats upfront, but there’s always next time!!!
Here are the links to the handful of videos I took at the Chateau Ste. Michelle show. With the exception of 'Little Wing', all of these are shorter clips of songs – the security folks were all over anyone taking extended videos (and I had one seated 3 feet away) so I only managed to get one full song. One of my favorite Jimi covers that Jeff does though, so at least there’s that.
Jeff Beck Band - Chateau Ste. Michelle Aug 9, 2014 - Loaded (clip) - http://youtu.be/SiDYHRPj8jI Jeff Beck Band - Chateau Ste. Michelle Aug 9, 2014 - You Never Know (clip) - http://youtu.be/8Fl4iNZSg60 Jeff Beck Band - Chateau Ste. Michelle Aug 9, 2014 - Little Wing - http://youtu.be/Lmkjxp0NWd4 Jeff Beck & ZZ Top - Chateau Ste. Michelle Aug 9, 2014 - La Grange (clip) - http://youtu.be/RKi1F7txcBg
Harrah's Casino Concert Venue, Atlantic City, NJ, August 30, 2014.
Rick McGowen Roving Reporter
Special to ainian.com
Jeff recovers and Dusty falls on his ass! Yikes, I have 4 shows cancelled! Without a ticket, I went online 2 days before the show at Harrah’s Atlantic City and managed to get 2 seats. This was the 2nd of 3 shows that Jeff continued playing at the 3 Casino venues. Salamanca, New York, Atlantic City, New Jersey and Mashantucket, Connecticut. That is the MGM Grand at Foxwoods Casino which was the final show of the abbreviated tour.
Blistering is the only word I can come up with to adequately sum up the show. Mr. Beck seems to be no worse for his medical malady (I think it’s his lower back) and is defying nature as Jimmy Page said at the Ivor Novello Awards in Britain. Here’s the clip. For every long time Jeff Beck fan that haunts this website, this interview is testament to all of us who have supported Jeff Beck for all of these years.
And, Jimmy says he went to 2 shows in Japan but would like to have seen them all! So, no Jeff, having seen you several hundred times does not make me crazy, a stalker or some celebrity idolizer. I won’t be getting “over it” as you said to me! I’m on the case man, and fortunate that you’re still here to give me 90 minutes of thrilling musicianship and kick-ass LIVE music. The best LIVE performer period!!!
But never mind me. Please read this fantastic article that the NY Times did with Jeff in 2009. I’ll quote Joe Perry from Aerosmith, “ Jeff Beck is the best guitar player on the planet”.
Harrah’s was a great surprise. 1200 capacity, soft seats with armrests, there is absolutely not a bad seat in the house. It’s like a large living room and the sound is clear and powerful. They got this place Right!! Jeff Beck in a small place……………everyone should be so lucky to see their favorite artists in such small confines!!
I won’t go through the songs, I’ve posted the set list. Tyler Bryant opened , was great, but this was the usual NYC metro area crowd. There were very few cancellations for ZZ Top, this was a purely Jeff Back audience. And Tyler sensing the impatience cut it short. He came back to do a great encore w/Jeff…Wild Thing. Most of the Harrah’s show is on Youtube courtesy of Joey Zee another NYC die-hard fan.
This band has become very close and they are having a lot of fun playing. They were smokin!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I think they’ll be back in November. I’ll be there!!!!
Chateau Ste. Michelle, Woodinville, WA, August 9, 2014.
Jeff Beck @ Chateau Ste. Michelle, 8/9 Show Review & Photos by Geoffrey Gribbin Jeff Beck There seems to be no stopping Jeff Beck, the legendary groundbreaking original Guitar Hero. With amazing grace and sensitivity to his instrument he continues to wow fans of all ages. 46 years ago Beck released his first album, Truth, featuring Ron Wood on bass, pre-Rolling Stones, and a boyish Rod Stewart on vocals. I was first introduced by my old friend Robert Knight to Jeff Beck on Jeff’s birthday in the mid-eighties at a swanky vegetarian Indian restaurant called The Standard in London. We swapped stories of welding and cutting torches and left the talk of music and guitars far behind. It was that day I learned of this love for all things cars and particularly 32 Fords. Beck’s performance at Chateau Ste. Michelle proved to be everything you would expect from a Jeff Beck concert. From lush swelling tones, to frantic stabbing, as his hands worked their way completely around the fret board without the use of a pick. His use of the tremolo has been copied by countless guitarist aspiring to be like him. Over the decades Jeff has reinvented himself over and over and over, constantly breaking new ground musically and aligning himself with musicians around the globe far and wide. Those in attendance tonight were treated by his amazing talent.
The Mountain Winery, Saratoga, CA, August 12, 2014.
From Rock Guitar Daily......
ZZ Top/Jeff Beck The Mountain Winery Saratoga, California August 12, 2014 Jeff Beck started it, ZZ Top proved it, and then they consummated the marriage - the blues did have a baby, and they called it rock 'n' roll. The sense of awe and joy was palpable in the arena. Whether it was Jeff Beck's great band smiling ear to ear at the gift of being onstage with their boss and hero, or Billy Gibbons looks of unabashed glee at having the legendarily nimble fingered Beck as his lead guitarist for his band's encores, or Beck looking incredibly proud of his young band, and also quite chuffed to be sharing the stage with classic rock's greatest 'lil old band from Texas, it was a perfect night of guitar driven rock 'n' roll. If I've seen a better show, I'm not sure when, where, or who it may have been. Maybe it was the perfect setting at the truly awe inspiring Mountain Winery, a venue that sits about a mile high above a backdrop of beautiful Northern California - the place is a natural wonder, and the stage, lights, and sound were stupendous. But even more beautiful was watching one of the original British guitar heroes truly teaming up with one of America's greatest bands to put on a show that was simply perfect. Jeff Beck may or may not be the greatest living guitarist, but if you said he was, few would argue. He remains a force of nature, pulling wondrous sounds from his trusty Fenders and Marshall amps - in my estimation the only guitarist with as significant a personal signature was Jimi Hendrix, who Beck quoted several times on this night, and never more brilliantly than when he and Southern soul shouter Jimmy Hall brought down the house with a blistering Little Wing. They actually even topped that moment, though, with a spellbinding take on the Sam Cooke classic, A Change Is Gonna Come - if you didn't get goose bumps from this one, you may want to check your pulse. Beck owned the evening's first half with a soul rendering take of The Beatles' A Day In The Life. I've heard him play it a hundred times, and I'm amazed anew with each listen. On this night, Beck once again played with equal parts fury and beauty, coaxing soaring notes as if by magic. I don't know why, or what has brought Beck back into the spotlight after so many years as a relative recluse, but it's to our benefit that he has chosen to do so. Jeff's band for this tour consists of bassist Rhonda Smith, guitarist Nicolas Meier (whose solo work is quite brilliant), drummer Jonathan Joseph, and the aforementioned Jimmy Hall. Jimmy Hall is an astounding soul stylist, and he's retained the unbridled skills he first unleashed on audiences in the distant seventies with Southern rockers, Wet Willie. As I mentioned above, his take on Sam Cooke's soul classic, A Change Is Gonna Come, was akin to watching a miracle in action. Beck could have about anyone he wanted fronting his band and he wanted Jimmy Hall - 'nuff said. Rhonda Smith is a solid groove on bass, and delivered some nice vocal parts. Her musical marriage with stickman Joseph is sublime - not as chops heavy as past Beck bands, but a perfect choice for a rhythm section in a band that is more song based. When they locked in, you didn't get released until they released you, and you didn't mind a bit. Especially notable in this lineup is guitarist Nicolas Meier. The Swiss born six stringer must know he's in a band with a boss who is both demanding, and a dazzling innovator, so he does his job to pristine, precise, perfection - whether he's accompanying softly on a Godin acoustic-electric, playing wistful Hendrixian rhythms on the soul train, or bashing out heavy chords through his Marshall half stack, he's supplying just what his band needs, and for a musician with skills that are quite frankly blinding to relegate himself to this position in this band speaks volumes for his superb and humble musicianship. The looks of joy on the face of this band were worth the price of admission. Were they having even more fun than the well-heeled, wine sipping Silicon Valley crowd? Maybe. Jeff Beck Setlist: 1. Loaded 2. Nine 3. You Know You Know (Mahavishnu Orchestra cover) 4. Yemin (Nicolas Meier) 5. You Never Know 6. Big Block 7. A Day In The Life 8. Morning Dew 9. Why Give It Away 10. A Change Is Gonna Come (Sam Cooke cover) 11. Little Wing (Jimi Hendrix cover) 12. Goin' Down 13. Rollin' and Tumblin The sun went down, the roadies set the stage (an incredibly appropriate and fashionable setting for rock's sharp dressed men), and from the moment the lights went down, the evening belonged to ZZ Top. I'd call this the Goldtop Tour if I had to give it a name, and while he always has superb tone, I'm of the opinion that Billy Gibbons never sounds better than when he wields a Gibson Les Paul. Gibbons is in fantastic shape - looking great, and playing quite frankly better than I have ever heard him play. He truly proved that he is one of rock 'n' roll's greatest riff and songwriters - often not given his due, he's a recognizable as Keith when he hits any of his iconic intros. I don't know if it's the presence of Beck on this tour, but Gibbons' solos cut like knives on every tune, and he appears incredibly inspired. The tone and the touch are perfect. I keep using that word because it is the right word. Dusty Hill has mended well from the surgery that sidelined the band for a few dates earlier in the summer, and his subtle mastery of the Fender four string is as big a part of the indefinable ZZ Top sound. His voice is in great shape, and he looked like he was having the time of his life as a bashed his strings and belted out his blues. There is no going through the motions on this tour - this is currently one of the planet's greatest power trios. Frank Beard. He should be on everyone's list of favorite drummer. He's a lot like Stones stickman Charlie Watts - neither is particularly fancy, but with either taken out of the equation, their respective bands would simply not be even remotely the same bands. Again and again he kept stealing my eyes from the front of the stage flash, and with every beat he drove this group like the best pilot in any man's air force. And oh yeah, the songs. The setlist (see below) is filled with platinum classics, but recent catalog adds such as Chartreuse, Flying High, and I Gotsa Get Paid stand proudly beside anything the band has done. Perhaps it's the humor and the image, but this band has never gotten their due as songsmiths, and they are every bit as great as America classics like Petty, and Fogerty. Simply the best that this continent has to offer (So then I have to throw in Neil Young, right?). The only thing wrong with the set was that it wasn't longer, or that perhaps it ever had to end. Then it was time for the coups de gras - the evening had to end, but the death was merciful. In fact it was joyfully rapturous. The band walked back on, but with a Brit in tow, and the truest fireworks were unveiled. Watching Jeff Beck play lead guitar with ZZ Top is something that every single person who has ever loved rock 'n' roll even for a moment should have the opportunity to witness. Kicking off the extended encore with the bands' signature song, La Grange, it was great to hear Beck take the first solo, and take the song on a trip to mid-60s London town, and it could have only gotten better when Gibbons laid down a note perfect rendition of his original solo. Dusty Hill took over for Tush, and it allowed Beck and Gibbon to toss the solos back and forth like a couple of guys playing catch in spring training. The ease with which these two virtuosos traded heaps of tonal bliss was a sight to see. Next, Billy Gibbons announced that they were going to break out a number for the first time on this tour, and what followed was the most melodic, soulful version of the band's 1986 top ten hit, Rough Boy. The most pop tune in the group's catalogue, it sounded achingly gorgeous in Beck's strong hands. He milked it for all it was worth, and it was worth its weight in gold. The quartet rocked out the night with a couple of rock 'n' roll classics, 16 Tons, and Jailhouse Rock, and the sold out audience walked away smiling from ear to ear. The evening ended rather well, with myself and my co-pilot for the evening the lovely Michelle joining a group of tailgaters in the parking lot, drinking high end scotch and smokin' Cuban cigars, as we waited for the lot to empty. Folk, it gets little better than this.... ZZ Top Setlist: 1. Got Me Under Pressure 2. Waitin' For The Bus 3. Jesus Just Left Chicago 4. Gimme All Your Lovin' 5. I Gotsa Get Paid 6. Flyin' High 7. Foxey Lady (Jimi Hendrix cover) 8. Catfish Blues (Muddy Waters cover) 9. My Head's In Mississippi 10. Chartreuse 11. Sharp Dressed Man 12. Legs Encore (with Jeff Beck): 1. La Grange 2. Tush 3. Rough Boy 4. 16 Tons 5. Jailhouse Rock Posted by Tony Conley at 11:35 AM
This summer’s touring marriage of English rock guitar hero Jeff Beck and veteran Texas blues rock trio ZZ Top in one sense brings full circle a mutual musical admiration society that was born 46 years ago. That was back in 1968, when Beck, on tour with the Jeff Beck Group after ascending into the pantheon of rock guitar greats with the likes of Jimi Hendrix and Eric Clapton, reached Dallas, where he played to an audience that included ZZ Top guitarist Billy Gibbons. “He had never seen anything like the size of my amplifier,” Beck, 70, recalled with a laugh earlier this week from a stop in Santa Barbara on the tour that reaches the Greek Theatre in Los Angeles on Wednesday. “That was when I had Rod [Stewart] in the band, and this furniture is wheeled in and I think the top of the cabinet was touching the ceiling,” Beck said. “The whole audience was in shock, including Billy.” Gibbons subsequently helped Beck’s group transport their equipment from that gig, but then they went their separate ways, Beck pushing the boundaries of blues-based rock guitar playing into more musically and sonically expansive realms, Gibbons and ZZ Top honing in on blues rooted rock that became the stock-in-trade of “that little ol’ band from Texas. On the current tour, Beck is accompanied by guitarist Nicolas Meier, bassist Rhonda Smith, drummer Jonathan Joseph and singer Jimmy Hall. They play a two-part set—the first instrumentals, the second with Hall handling vocals—before turning things over to Gibbons, bassist Dusty Hill and Drummer Frank Beard. “We could never figure out what Beck was doing on his instrument to get those sounds, and it was that mystery that inspired us to push our own sound to the next level,” Gibbons said recently in a statement. “It is an honor to be sharing the stage with the curator of crunch.” After the separate sets, Beck and ZZ Top join forces for a few more numbers—at some early shows they’ve collaborated on ZZ Top hits “La Grange” and “Tush” and one night added a rendition of Elvis Presley’s “Jailhouse Rock,” a nod to the influence the early American rockers had on both acts. While Presley was never a guitar hero, Beck said the King and his band had a huge impact on him. “Absolutely,” he said. “The thing is, because he was girly fodder and he looked so great, I always instantly focused on the guitar sound and the drums on his records. D.J. Fontana’s drums were mind-blowing. “We pursued all the big [early rock] guys,” he said. “My favorite was Gene Vincent. He didn’t look like Elvis—he wasn’t hunky. He looked like a serial killer. But the accuracy of all that backing from his band [The Blue Caps] was what swept me away.” Beyond shared musical passion, Beck and ZZ Top also are major aficionados of classic cars. When Beck saw ZZ Top's car-rooted campaign for its 1983 breakthrough album, "Eliminator," "I thought, 'They've just stolen my whole idea. But that was American subculture through and through, and I had no right to claim any of it. And they did it so beautifully." Beck developed a reputation for his innovative guitar work in the early ‘60s, and was drafted as a member of the Yardbirds in 1965, to replace one Eric Clapton, himself a replacement for the group’s original lead guitarist Anthony “Top” Topham. Fans and press often conjectured about a rivalry between Clapton and Beck, but Beck has downplayed any animosity between the two over the years. In recent years Clapton has lauded Beck as the best rock guitarist in the world. Both, however, were in awe of Hendrix when he surfaced, especially after they were able to see him perform when he was in England in the mid-1960s. Beck noted that before Hendrix, most rock guitar players concentrated on a similar style and technical vocabulary, something that Hendrix blew apart with his unconventional approach to the instrument. That encouraged Beck to push his own limits, and over the decades he’s created a distinctive, emotionally deep, melodically rich style that’s earned him a reputation as a musician’s musician. A white Fender Stratocaster is the instrument most closely associated with him. He’s long been fascinated with classical music, and has even recorded an arrangement of Gustav Mahler’s Fifth Symphony for electric guitar, a recording he hopes to release if he can find record label support for the project. In a year when 50th anniversaries of the Beatles’ arrival in the U.S. and the launch of the British Invasion are being celebrated on multiple levels, Beck—who first hit the big time in early 1965 after joining the Yardbirds—says he’d like to put together a 50-year career retrospective show. It would tap the various facets of his musical path, from the Yardbirds to the Jeff Beck Group through other associations including with Beck, Bogert & Appice and multiple solo ventures. “That would take a year to assemble,” said Beck, who also is going through live recordings from recent shows in Japan for possible release as a live album later this year. “I’d like to use the Strypes, that little band from Ireland, to open, because they look like me, and what the Yardbirds look like, only maybe five years younger. I’d like to get whoever is alive and kicking and still playing and get them along instead of having a core band, and do a proper production with all the bells and whistles.” Such an project would dovetail with plans in the works for an autobiography and a film based on Beck’s life, all of which, the guitarist said, would incorporate heavy doses of humor. “I want the movie to be made,” he said. “I think I’ve got the funniest film ever, from Day 1 when I was first able to recognize my mum. It would be sort of enchanting and Disney-esque, with all the nastiness of a horror film. Mostly horror.” Follow @RandyLewis2 on Twitter for pop music coverage Copyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times
Greek Theater, Los Angelis, CA, August 13, 2014.
Live Music: ZZ Top and Jeff Beck at the Greek Theatre By Mike Finkelstein Los Angeles, CA. Cool is one of those qualities that, although hard to precisely define, we sure do recognize when we see it. On Wednesday night at the Greek Theatre, Jeff Beck and Billy Gibbons, two of the coolest guitar personalities to ever spank the plank, shared a double bill, and also found time to share the stage. These are two who have the cool in their delivery and style. And as both approach 70 years old their continued prowess with their instruments is inspiring. For guitar enthusiasts this was must see live work and it satisfied mightily. Jeff Beck went onstage shortly after sundown in a black vest, a wrapped scarf, and the same haircut we have known him with for nearly 50 years. The silhouette is very familiar. For years from the seventies on, his bands have featured him playing with one talented keyboardist or another (Max Middleton and Jan Hammer are notable alums). On Wednesday, there were no keyboards, instead he had a second guitar player, a dynamic young female bassist and a monster drummer… and for more than half of his set he had ex-Wet Willie vocalist and long time collaborator, Jimmy Hall, singing a batch of his more bluesy, guitar and-vocals oriented tunes. Beck’s set began instrumentally with “Loaded,” and the band stretched out nicely over a cover of “You Know You Know,” by the Mahavishnu Orchestra. Bassist Rhonda Smith in particular, shined on this, serving up a contrasting mix of slapping and undulating bends. Lately, no Jeff Beck show is without his instrumental version of the Beatles’ “A Day In The Life.” On Wednesday that tune was classic JB, with all the dynamics and nuance he is famous for injecting into his interpretations. Much has been written over the years about his style and he truly stands alone in that nobody else does what he does and if they try to, we know where they got the ideas. It is his multitasking right hand that sets him apart. That right hand often does two or three things at once. Whether he is tapping the strings, delicately nudging the vibrato arm, working the volume knob, or just ripping open a power chord it all takes a beautiful form. He hangs his hat on controlling chaos in his sound. It blows like a tornado and then stops and pivots on a dime. Halfway through the set, Hall came onstage and they reached way back to the Truth album for “Morning Dew.” It’s a powerful song, whether sung by Rod Stewart (on Truth) or by Hall this time. And it’s a great example of how much more than the sum of the parts a vocal line and guitar line can elevate to. They also continued on to cover Jimi Hendrix’ “Little Wing,” and Sam Cooke’s “A Change is Gonna Come.” But the direction of the evening was shown with last two selections of “Goin’ Down,” from Rough and Ready, and the British blues/rock staple, “Rollin’ and Tumblin’.” At the end of his set, his “Aw Shucks” grin and slouch said it all. But we would see Beck again, later in the evening. ZZ Top came on next as the headliner, and put on a uniquely stylized rock ‘n’ roll show. The stage set had a distinctly automotive theme to it, from the red and green lights in the bass drums, to the truck smokestacks that supported the mike stands, and there were many projected slides of sparkplugs displayed like fine hors d’oeuvres. One really can’t discuss ZZ Top without acknowledging the presence of the beards. Both bassist Dusty Hill and guitarist Billy Gibbons have beards down past their sternums and also wear black sunglasses, dark hats and similar but happily not identical black pants, coats and shoes. You could say they each look like a cross between Cousin It (Addam’s family) and the Fabulous Furry Freak Brothers…but can they ever play and dance. The way they carry themselves onstage is one of a kind. Together it’s magic, a comic combination of effortless, confident, and impressive. … and all of these are key strands of cool. Both Gibbons and Hill are thinner than you might imagine, and light on their feet in a laid back way. Gibbons is pretty much gaunt, but he slides around stage with the same cool fluidity he exudes on guitar. The two beards can still dance the choreographed steps they learned in the bars and roadhouses of Texas coming up through the ranks. Who knew the dancing and their style would get them noticed, big-time, on MTV in the 80’s? It does look cool, but it wouldn’t mean anything if it didn’t sound like ZZ Top. For a three-piece band, ZZT puts out a lot of sound. They keep the riffs and the riff-support simple but it sounds tremendous. The bass and guitar are usually playing in unison to make the figure sound as big as possible. The drums were thunderous and on one of the toms there was a huge reverb trigger at work. But on top of it all is Billy Gibbons’ legendary guitar tone…and that’s what sets ZZ Top’s sound apart. One has to hear Gibbons’ tone to appreciate it. On Wednesday he played a customized old gold top Les Paul. He often plays with a quarter or a peso instead of a guitar pick, and this enables him to put all sorts of overtones off the top of the string with the metal on metal contact. He also has his amps dialed in for huge but not overblown sustain, and very little dirt in his distortion. The end result is a tremendous, clean and bright, clear and soft, lead tone and a magnificently overdriven, but clean rhythm tone. The band cruised through crowd favorites such as “Waitin’ for the Bus,” “Jesus Just Left Chicago,” “ Gimme All Your Lovin’,” and even covered Jimi Hendrix with an impressive rendition of “Foxy Lady.” But perhaps the most telling song was their cover of Muddy Waters’ “Catfish Blues.” There’s just something about the way ZZ Top plays blues that isn’t remotely like so many other bands that just rock the blues into a distorted and boring cliche. While they do turn it up, ZZ Top’s rhythm section takes a less is definitely more approach for the blues. And again, Gibbons’ guitar tone, just squeezing out the sparks and wheezes was phenomenal. They linked the elusive sparsely powerful intimacy of the old Chicago blues with the big oomph of power trio rock music…not so easy to do well. ZZ Top’s encore was the big treat and the moment of anticipation- Jeff Beck and Billy Gibbons on the same stage. Bring it on. It wasn’t so much a showdown as a chance for us to finally corral two of the more distinctive rock guitar stylists ever on one stage. Many guitar players who share a stage with Jeff Beck are in awe. Gibbons was simply playing with a peer, so there was no tension to break. Gibbons switched to a Fender Telecaster, so as not to overpower Beck’s Stratocaster. They Played “La Grange,” and “Tush,” of course, but the coolest song had to be a cover of Tennessee Ernie Ford’s “Sixteen Tons.” Between Gibbons’ low, murmuring growls on the vocal, it was a fine showcase of the two styles and in the end the winner was the audience. Cool is one of those qualities we tend to associate with youth but it’s really quite remarkable to see older folks retain it and wear it so effortlessly. Jeff Beck and Billy Gibbons are still two of the cooler cats you’ll ever see nearing seventy years old and playing killer guitar.
Wednesday night at The Greek LA turned into a spectacular display of guitar prowess and skill as Jeff Beck, ZZ Top and opening act Tyler Bryant blew away the crowd on a perfect night in Los Angeles. Bell-bottomed and spiffy, Tyler Bryant played in a bluesy and melodic style, slowly teasing the crowd while alternating between acoustic guitar and dobro, warming up the evening's performance by making small talk with audience in anticipation of evening's big draw. Nevertheless the Texas native got down with some chill blues, having honed his skills in the L.A. area with his band Tyler Bryant and the Shakedown. Jeff Beck came on strong, billowing onto the stage accompanied by guitarist Nicolas Meier, bassist Rhonda Smith, drummer Jonathan Joseph and singer Jimmy Hall. They played a two-part set — the first instrumentals, the second with Hall handling vocals. Bassist Smith, all in white, was no damsel in distress. With a white hat, killer abs and a merrily killing bass style, she gamely followed Beck with deep vibrato tones that made her presence known and respected on the Greek stage. Beck and his band played songs that included Jimi Hendrix's "Little Wing," "Going Down," Sam Cooke's “A Change Is Gonna Come," and “Rollin' and Tumblin'” Then things changed when ZZ Top shook the stage. Guitarist Billy Gibbons, bassist Dusty Hill and Drummer Frank Beard brought the Texas/ Mississippi blues to the stage with a backdrop of beauties gracing the stage. There were plenty in the audience, too. ZZ Top started hard and let up just a little so you could catch your breath. Like Beck, they also paid homage to Hendrix with their version of “Foxy Lady.” The crowd was going mad and did not let up until the final encore with Beck and ZZ Top. It was a great way to close up the super-moon week. Set List : ZZ TOP Got Me Under Pressure Waitin' for The Bus Jesus Just Left Chicago Gimme All your Lovin' Pincushion I Gotsa To Get Paid Flyin' High Foxy Lady (Jimi Hendrix) Catfish Blues (Muddy Waters) My Heads in Mississippi Chartreuse Sharp Dressed Man Legs ENCORE with Jeff Beck LA Grange/Sloppy Drunk Jam Tush ENCORE: Jeff Beck and ZZ Top: Tennessee Ernie Ford's “Sixteen Tons.” SET LIST FOR JEFF BECK: Loaded Nine You Know You Know(Mahavishnu Orchestra cover) Yemin(Nicolas Meier cover) You Never Know Big Block A Day in the Life(The Beatles cover) Morning Dew(Bonnie Dobson cover) Why Give It Away A Change Is Gonna Come(Sam Cooke cover) Little Wing(The Jimi Hendrix Experience cover) Goin' Down(Moloch cover) Rollin' and Tumblin'(Hambone Willie Newbern cover)
The Joint, Las Vegas, NV, August 16, 2014.
AVA Amphitheater, Tucson, AZ, August 17, 2014.
From The Examiner......
Jeff Beck and ZZ Top live Rating: Star Star Star Star Star 5 Stars August 19, 2014 Review and photos by Mary Andrews Neither Jeff Beck nor ZZ Top is ready to retire any time soon. Both acts proved that royally, Sunday, August 17, 2014 at AVA Amphitheatre. Bad weather could not keep the crowds coming to see their heros. The sold out crowd was treated to two concerts for the price of one and the bands totally rocked out. The show started with newbie Tyler Bryant performing a 20-minute acoustic set. Bryant is young, but not exactly a newbie. Tyler is a guitar prodigy who has shared the stage with Aerosmith, Heart, REO Speedwagon, Paul Simon, Jeff Beck, BB King, Pat Benetar and more. At the age of 15, Tyler won the Robert Johnson Foundation’s New Generation Award, which recognized him as one of the most promising new artist on the music scene. His energetic 20-minute set proved how founded the award truly was. This summer has provided some of the most revered guitarists live on various stages in Tucson. Tonight continues to present that plethora of talent. Jeff Beck, at age 70, has been ranked number five in Rolling Stone’s list of “100 greatest guitarists.” Mr. Beck has been playing guitar since 1966 when the Yardbirds recruited him. He can play all genre of music, but is most noted for his blues-rock, hard rock, jazz fusion, and electronica. Tonight, guitarist Nicolas Meier, bassist Rhonda Smith, drummer Jonathan Joseph and singer Jimmy Hall accompanied Beck. Jimmy Hall is the longtime member/vocalist of the Wet Willie band. He provided some righteous harmonica chops along with his outstanding vocals. All members of the band brought their A-game to say the least and each had a chance to show off their talent. Jeff Beck was very modest in his delivery of music. He is not a “showy” performer. During the encore with ZZ Top, he preferred to be in the background. It was obvious that Jeff was having a good time during the 70-minute set. His guitar playing appeared to be effortless and yet, perfect. He played a lot of blues but his solo of “Danny Boy” was most stirring. Beck did a show of “hands.” He did not use a guitar pick, but he produced a wide variety of sound using his fingers and the vibrato bar on his guitar. He also used the wah-wah pedal occasionally. Jimmy Hall gave sterling vocals on Sam Cooke’s “A Change Is Going To Come” and Stevie Wonder’s “Superstition.” Overall the set seemed too short for this guitar legend! The final set was “that little ol’ band from Texas,” ZZ Top. The crowd was up and screaming for their blend of blues-rooted rock and ZZ Top delivered. The three-piece band has had the same lineup for over 40 years. They are Billy Gibbons, guitar, bassist Dusty Hill and drummer Frank Beard. Gibbons takes the job as front man for the group very seriously by providing his characteristic guitar and his sense of humor. He hollered out, “Hey Tucson, we’ve been in and out of Tucson for over 40 years. We are the same guys.” “There is always plenty of one thing here. Mexican food! There’s El Menudo and La Indio . . . I had to go check out a house where I used to live earlier today.” The party was on. The set included enough old classics to please any crowd. The best part of the show was the four-song encore with Jeff Beck. That included “La Grange,” “Tush,” “Rough Boy,” and “Sixteen Tons.” Again, Jeff Beck was happy to support the group with his trademark expert guitar licks. It was a very satisfying show and as Billy Gibbons said, “Not bad for only three guitar chords!”
Verizon Wireless Amphitheater, Maryland Heights, MO, August 24, 2014.
From The St. Louis Post-Dispatch......
By Daniel Durchholz Special to the Post-Dispatch How confident are the members of ZZ Top? So confident that they dared to follow Jeff Beck in concert and then later in the evening shared the stage with him. Sunday night’s pairing of “that lil’ ol’ band from Texas” with the British guitar hero at Verizon Wireless Amphitheater offered a distinct contrast in styles. ZZ Top, still boasting its original membership of guitarist Billy Gibbons, bassist Dusty Hill and drummer Frank Beard — “same three guys, same three chords,” Gibbons joked — plays gritty, supercharged Texas blues. Englishman Beck, meanwhile, shrugged off superstardom decades ago to explore mostly instrumental music rooted in blues but ranging also into metal, funk and jazz-fusion. Beck opened the evening with a 75-minute set, and — never mind jazz fusion; his playing was so hot, it was more akin to the nuclear variety. His backing band — bassist Rhonda Smith, drummer Jonathan Joseph, and for the first time, a rhythm guitarist, Nicholas Meier — kept Beck tethered to planet Earth while he explored the cosmos on wide-ranging instrumentals including several new pieces — “Loaded,” “Nine” and Meier’s Middle Eastern-tinged “Yemin.” The band was joined by vocalist Jimmy Hall for “Morning Dew,” a song that reached back to the Jeff Beck Group’s 1968 album, “Truth.” On a cover of Sam Cooke’s “A Change Is Gonna Come,” Hall’s vocals soared while Beck’s transcendent solo wrung out any number of emotions. Beck has played the song in other cities, but given the recent events in Ferguson, perhaps it meant more right here and right now than it has elsewhere. It earned an extended ovation. Among the other instrumental standouts were the funky “You Never Know,” Beck’s stunning take on the Beatles’ “A Day in the Life” and the gorgeous “Where Were You.” Hall returned for a rollicking finale of the blues staples “Rollin’ and Tumblin’” and “Goin’ Down.” Beck exceeded his allotted time by about 10 minutes, but really, it would have been fine had he never surrendered the stage. ZZ Top’s set was a straight-ahead, no frills affair far removed from the visual splendor the band traded in during the height of its MTV bred fame (or even before that, when their show included a longhorn steer onstage). This time, there were just a few video screens showing stock images and classic videos. But a band can afford to let its music do the talking when its catalog is as deep with hits as ZZ Top’s. The trio plowed through a dozen of them, including “Gimme All Your Lovin’,” “Cheap Sunglasses” and “Sharp Dressed Man,” and covered Robert Petway’s (via Muddy Waters) “Catfish Blues,” and Jimi Hendrix’s “Foxy Lady.” Gibbons and Hill did break out their white fur-covered guitars for “Legs,” and did a little low-key choreography. That was about it for showmanship, but really, the music didn’t require much more. Still, the set felt a bit short and even a little anticlimactic after Beck’s stellar performance. Beck returned to join ZZ Top for two encores, the first featuring extended jams on “La Grange” and “Tush,” while the second uncorked a something of an inside joke: an oddball cover of Tennessee Ernie Ford’s “Sixteen Tons.” Internet hoaxers, it seems, had created a fake video mashup of Beck and ZZ Top playing the song together, which they then decided to actually do. It was a case of life imitating art imitating life. Young Texas guitar slinger Tyler Bryant opened the show with a short but lively solo acoustic set. He normally doesn’t perform in that format, he said, but reasoned, “When Jeff Beck and ZZ Top ask you to do something, you do it.” Jeff Beck set list Loaded Nine Morning Dew You Know You Know Why Give It Away A Change Is Gonna Come Yemin You Never Know A Day in the Life Superstition Big Block Where Were You Rollin’ and Tumblin’ Goin’ Down ZZ Top set list Got Me Under Pressure Waitin’ for the Bus Jesus Just Left Chicago Gimme All Your Lovin’ I Gotsta Get Paid Flyin’ High Foxy Lady Catfish Blues My Head’s in Mississippi Cheap Sunglasses Sharp Dressed Man Legs Encore (with Jeff Beck): La Grange/Sloppy Drunk Jam Tush Second encore (with Jeff Beck): Sixteen Tons
Seneca Allegany Resort And Casino, Salamanca, NY, August 29, 2014.
The Show Goes On With Jeff Beck Posted on August 30, 2014 Concert Review Jeff Beck Tyler Bryant Seneca Allegany Resort & Casino Salamanca, NY Review/Photos: Joseph Suto ZZ Top and Jeff Beck looked like a great double bill on paper. They sold a good amount of tickets for what looked like a can’t miss show Friday evening. Things then went off the tracks from there as late Tuesday night ZZ Top bassist Dusty Hill slipped and fell on his hip getting on his tour bus. The result was Hill needing immediate medical attention and the tour dates be cancelled. Depsite the cancellation of that little ol’ band from Texas, Jeff Beck and Tyler Bryant stepped up to the plate and tried to help fill the void. The outdoor stage at Seneca Allegany Resort & Casino was the setting as both Beck and Bryant put on a dazzling display of guitar work that satisfied what turned out to be a decent crowd all things considered. Beck said in a related statement regarding the ZZ Top cancellation “While we are very disappointed to not continue this tour with ZZ Top, our thoughts and best wishes are for Dusty to have a speedy recovery”. Beck did his part as he stepped into the headliner spot and for those who have never seen Beck let me tell you he is every bit as advertised. The Rock and Roll Hall of Famer and Grammy winner put on a heck of a show. His current band includes Rhonda Smith on bass, Jonathan Joseph on drums and Nicolas Meier on guitar. Vocalist Jimmy Hall did not come out until the band’s fourth number “Morning Dew”. Hall would then bounce in to sing a few tracks and then leave periodically throughout the night. Whenever a list of guitarists is compiled one thing for sure is Jeff Back’s name will be somewhere near the top of that list. He is widely considered one of the most influential guitarists off all-time. It is hard to believe Beck is now seventy years old. He looks and plays like a man half his age. Seventy must be the new forty as Beck played with swagger and finesse that most guitarists can only dream about. Opening the show with a brief set was Tyler Bryant who played a solo acoustic set to get things started. Bryant is an extremely talented twenty-three year old guitarist from Texas who many feel has a real bright future ahead. Be sure to catch his regular band Tyler Bryant & The Shakedown if they come to your area. Special thanks to Tony Astran for setting us up to review the show.
MGM Grand Theater @ Foxwoods, Mashantucket, CT, August 31, 2014.
Jeff Beck is masterful in Foxwoods performance By Rick Koster Publication: TheDay.com Published September 01. 2014 12:08PM Updated September 02. 2014 8:57AM Editor's Note: This article corrects the title of Stevie Wonder's song from “Superstitious” to “Superstition.” Mashantucket — For more than an hour Sunday night, websites devoted to synonyms — on all the computers in the world — suffered a bizarre glitch. Any citizen who typed any adjective that conveyed superiority, creative genius or artistic magnificence returned only one response, repeated over and over to signify a quality of absoluteness: JEFF BECK. JEFF BECK. JEFF BECK. Was it a hacker’s tomfoolery? Nope, just some sort of mystical and algorithmic cross-circuitry that tech geeks ascribe to the fact that Beck, onstage in the Grand Theater in the Foxwoods Resort Casino, led his magnificent band through 75 minutes of music that was cornucopian in scope, breadth, passion, chops and imagination. To call it guitar sleight of hand would be accurate but simplistic. To say Beck is a complete and dazzling original — without question one of the top guitarists ever — is more accurate but still comes nowhere close to describing what he can do. The show had special circumstances that perhaps added to the majesty of the performance. It was the final night of the tour, for one thing. For another, as originally booked, Beck was going to open a co-headline bill with ZZ Top. Last week, though, when Top bassist Dusty Hill injured his hip, the Texas trio canceled the rest of the tour and Beck chose to soldier on in a solo capacity with an expanded set time. All good thoughts go out to Hill, but, selfishly, that provided extra Beckery for those of us fortunate to be in the hall Sunday. Dressed in pinstripe black trousers and a black and silver vest over a gray tank-top, and with the same haircut he sported when he joined the Yardbirds back during the reign of Henry IV, the 70-year-old Beck still looks effortlessly cool. He stood center stage, offering a cryptic grin as his hands fluttered over his Fender guitars, coaxing and charming celestial sounds, scalular runs with the glorious density of iridium, waterfall harmonics, wildfire tremolo howls — and cross-pollinations thereof. Jaw-dropping virtuosity? Of course; he’s Jeff Beck. Of course, this is all in service to the music. In that context, his fellow players — Rhonda Smith (bass), Jonathan Joseph (drums), Nicolas Meier (guitar) and, for about half the set, vocalist Jimmy Hall — performed with joyous and bubbling precision. The set list mixed material from the latter Beck catalog — typically amalgams of fusion, blues and rock — with his career-long and disbelief-inducing ability to arrange work by other artists. Tunes by Jimi Hendrix (“Little Wing”), the Beatles (“A Day in the Life”), Stevie Wonder (“’Cause We’ve Ended as Lovers” and “Superstition.”), Muddy Waters (“Rollin’ and Tumblin,’” with its staccato double-stop phrase on every third riff) and Billy Cobham (“Spectrum”) were the equivalent of repainting masterpieces in giddy but empathetic, previously unimagined colors. In support — and during Beck’s “Wild Thing” encore — the young Texas blues-rock guitarist Tyler Bryant showed masterful chops and presence. firstname.lastname@example.org @rickkoster