Our fortunes seemed to have taken an upward turn over the past couple of weeks with so many Jammers & Listeners returning to the fold at last, but one notable absentee this week was Ernie King. Our video man is at present undergoing various cardiac examinations. Needless to say, we all wish Ernie a speedy recovery and hope to see him back here where he belongs - get well soon, Ernie!
Particularly pleasing this week was to see our houseband guests Mike Dearing and Alan Vincent perform a wonderful opening set in front of our best attendance so far this year. Mike and Alan arrived with bundles of enthusiasm which was perfectly displayed on stage and throughout the six numbers they played. Although I had a preview of their set-list, our resident drummer Reg Patten did not, but he still performed wonders as we have come to expect. Besides a very accomplished opening set there were a couple of moments that stood out, namely Alan Vincent's superb guitar-playing on the instrumental "The Stumble" and their great version of Santana's "Evil Ways", which grooved along nicely. One unexpected surprise was Mike's inspired invitation to Phil Hughes to play harp on the final two numbers, "Way Down In The Hole" and "It Aint Right" - yes we were mightily spoilt for talent for which our audience expressed their appreciation with rapturous applause and rightly so!
The only disappointment was not seeing Mike and Alan back on stage at the end of the night owing to the number of Jammers, which included seven vocalists. Our final jam set overran our 11 o'clock closing time by about 20 minutes and I didn't want to stretch the club manageress's patience. Mike and Alan will certainly return as houseband guests and we also hope to see them back here as Jammers - our heartiest thanks to Mike Dearing and Alan Vincent !
Nice to see vocalist Jan Fielder and harp-playing Bo back here after quite a lengthy absence. Both gave us excellent jam-sets it must be said. Another welcome face was guitar+vocalist Matt Withey who I assume came to give his fellow Kentish man Mike Dearing a bit of support.
In many ways this week's Blues jam took my mind back to our days at The Heathcote when John Parry and his family & friends regularly attended and brought a sense of fun. This certainly came to reality when - lo and behold - John appeared before my eyes accompanied by his lovely wife Alison, their two talented lads Billy and Kyle plus another family friend. Although five of this week's jam-sets were given three numbers each we decided give two numbers to Bonnie Taylor due to time catching up on us. Bonnie was ably supported by John Parry and his two sons, saxophonist Alan Elliott and keyboard-player Steve Taylor. As Bonnie left the stage we then kept John Parry & Co onstage to perform two more numbers. After seeing John Parry putting in a terrific performance at the Manor Arms last Saturday it was also great to see young Bill Parry back here behind the drumkit - and is there a better young bass-player than Kyle Parry I ask myself?
A good mix of Jammers this week which included three saxophonists and two harp-players, but just two jamming drummers, although in retrospect we could've asked multi-instrumentalist John Parry to play drums - he'd get a tune out of a rusty ol' bedstead!
So another memorable night was enjoyed by all, with special thanks to all our wonderful Jammers. Time to call...
The Roll Of Honour:
Owing to Ernie King's absence there will be no video footage this week, but our Webmaster Ken Cumberlidge will be uploading a fine selection of mp3 recordings shortly.
I must thank Raf and Richard Stenhouse for helping to set up the equipment and stacking it away at the end of the night. Also thanks and appreciation to Mrs D for arranging the jam-sets and taking half of this week's photos.
Next time at Leytonstone Blues Jam:
Two of my old "Hungry Joe" band-mates will be making their debut as houseband guest in the form of guitarists Alan Taylor & Kevin Molyneux. Both will be preparing a careful but interesting set-list I am reliably informed, so please arrive nice and early, bring friends and make our two houseband guests feel at ease - you won't be disappointed!
Something for the weekend:
After last week's stonking and much-praised performance at St Harmonica's Blues Club last Friday I am pleased to say that the quality continues this Friday (15th) when "House Red" will be this week's guest band - "House Red" are in fact Chrissie Thomas (vocals), our MC Dave Thomas (vocals/bass), John Crowther (vocals/guitar), Simon Bennett (guitar/keyboard) and Les Cole (drums). Half-time support comes from "Sky Wood & Jesse Thomas" - two members of "The Blues Chapter". For further details, please VISIT THE ST. HARMONICA'S WEBPAGE
On Saturday 15th at The Manor Arms, 150 East India Dock Road, E14 0BP there will be boisterous entertainment when Dave Heggs will be guesting with Ronnie Collins' Last Project starting at 3.00pm til 6.00pm. It's never dull at this famous (or infamous) little pub - you have to see it to believe it!
Thanking all our Jammers and Listeners,