A LITTLE VOODOO – Contemporary Blues, Centre 64, Saturday October 17, 2015, 8pm. This is the third concert in the fall Jazz and Blues Festival series.
Everyone would like to play music but for a potential musician the first step is deciding to actually go ahead and do it. First step is to get hold of an instrument, take some lessons and start practicing. Then there is the whole process of developing a professional skill set to make it all worth while. It is supposed to be fun, and it often is, but as the old saying goes “10% inspiration, 90% sweat”. So it isn’t as easy as some people imagine. Then there is the search for musically compatible partners to maybe form a working band. By this time you and your musical partners have been playing for years and the aim is then to develop a really tight group sound. And, of course, if you are a rock/blues musician you have “to have the moves” for an on stage performance. At last you have arrived. The sound is tight, the moves groove, but lo, everything is not quite as it should be. It all starts to become a little to rote and stale. Even in the most popular and successful bands then comes a time when every performance starts sounding the same. The music has all been done before and even the banter in between tunes sounds just a little bit too rehearsed.There are no surprises and, often that is exactly what the audience wants, but musically it may not be that satisfying. But then along comes A Little Voodoo (Ron Burke – lead guitar; Tom Knowles – bass guitar; and Rob Vulic – drums) a Blues / Rock outfit whose avowed aim is to go beyond tight and loosen it all up a bit. Risk is the name of the game and the result is “real live music”. The last set list Ron put together was back in the 90’s so the performances are coming out of the air and everybody has to be on his toes. This Calgary band was a real treat for a Kimberley audience that may not have been used to loud, in your face blues/rock music that owed a lot to Stevie Ray Vaughan, Jimmie Hendrix and the like. Never-the-less they took it in their stride and obviously enjoyed the opening tune with the refrain “I’m tired of living hand to mouth”. What followed was a night of exciting music that included a stellar version of Donovan’s (remember him, a soft sell folkie from way back in the 60s) of Sunshine Superman. There was nothing soft sell about this version!! Not to be outdone by all that came before in the evening the band finished the night with a lesson in constructive feed back. At the end of which Ron finally left his Epiphone guitar standing in the rack while it continued to echo its way through its feed back riffs. To help those riffs reverberate in your mind’s eye here are some images from the evening.
I hate to sound repetitive but the Stage 64 / Centre 64 organization have scored top marks again. Another sold out show, another stellar performance and mucho thanks to the organizers, sponsors and volunteers.