Whether you are a fan of Joe Bonamassa or not you cannot ignore his steady growth as an artist and as a modern day Blues icon.
To Bonamassa playing this venue is an iconic moment in his career – treading the same boards as many of the jazz and Blues greats including Ray Charles and Bonamassa’s mentor in the early days B.B.King.
“I am extremely honoured by a lot of things in my career, but honestly, as a born New Yorker, getting the opportunity to play the world’s premier concert theatre will always be something I look back on and cherish. Thank you to the ten thousand people that came out over those two nights. It was a great honour,” said Bonamassa.
He splits his set into two, starting with an acoustic segment based on his show at Vienna in 2013 and accompanied by his acoustic band The Huckleberries. Opening with ‘Dust Bowl’ and then travelling through the different periods of his career, ‘Still Water’ stands out as does a beautiful version of ‘Different Shades of Blue’ but the slide playing on ‘Black Lung Heartache’ really sets him aside and shows he is a lot more than electric Rock/Blues.
The electric segment follows, similar in style to his shows at Hammersmith in April with a full band, including horns, and the performance is superb. The horns add a real backbone to some of his material and the way that they are used sparingly means that the music doesn’t end up being bloated.
Bonamassa’s guitar playing is as fiery as ever and his voice is in good shape, the band is superb and the whole set comes across as a man at the top of his game.
As ever with Joe Bonamassa this is all about the guitar and through ‘Never Give All Your Heart’ and ‘Hidden Charms’ and on to ‘Living On The Moon’ and a wonderful ‘Double Trouble’ (featuring Stevie Ray Vaughan’s piano player Reese Wynans) he shows just about everything the electric guitar can be used for.
Bonamassa is a musical polymath – never stopping moving whether it is playing with Beth Hart or Black Country Communion or Rock Candy Funk Party – but this is Bonamassa squarely in the Blues/rock genre he first made his name in.
Frankly, I cannot wait to see where he goes next.
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from Andy Sniper, Music-news.com