‘Blues And Beyond’ Is An Interesting New Musical Moore Profile

Courtesy: BMG

Early this month, BMG Music and Sanctuary Records partnered to pay tribute to the late great blues guitarist Gary Moore with a new compilation of Moore’s music. The collection, Blues and Beyond was released on a two-disc standard edition and a deluxe four-disc collection that also features two discs of live material and a book written by author Harry Shapiro. For the sake of this review, the focus will be on the standard two-disc collection. That collection is an interesting new presentation. That is due in part to the collection’s featured songs. They will be discussed shortly. The songs’ sequencing is just as important to discuss in examining this recording as the collection’s featured songs. The songs’ arrangements round out its most important elements. Each element is important in its own right to its whole. All things considered, the noted elements make Blues and Beyond a presentation that is certain to interest Moore’s fans as well as blues fans in general.

BMG Music and Sanctuary Records’ new Gary Moore compilation Blues And Beyond is an interesting new collection of Moore’s music. It is a record that gives audiences what can only be described as a small snapshot of the late great guitarist’s extensive and successful career. That snapshot is presented through a 28-song collection that includes Moore’s 2001 album Back to the Blues and his 2004 album Power of the Blues in full along with a small portion of A Different Beat (1999) and almost half of his 2002 album Scars. For those who might be less familiar with Moore’s body of work, it wasn’t until about 2001 that Moore, who was also known early in his career for rock compositions with Thin Lizzy and Skid Row, really started to focus solidly on his blues chops. A Different Beat was an experimental record for Moore that really started his transition back to the blues in more focused fashion. Keeping that in mind, it makes sense why BMG and Sanctuary opted to present two of Moore’s biggest blues records for this collection. In the same vein, the inclusion of songs from A Different Beat also explains the & Beyond portion of the collection’s title. The songs taken from that record, as few as they are, give audiences an interesting look into Moore’s attempts to branch out beyond the standard 12-bar blues, and in turn makes this collection that much more interesting. When those experimental songs are joined with the collection’s more standard blues works, the whole of the collection insures listeners’ maintained engagement and entertainment. Keeping this in mind, the collection’s featured songs are themselves only part of what makes this collection of interest. Its sequencing is just as important to note as its songs.

While this compilation focuses only on one specific period in Gary Moore’s career, audiences will note the compilation never once sits too long on one of the featured albums. Over the course of just the collection’s first five songs, the collection switches back and forth constantly between Back to the Blues and Power of the Blues. From there on out, that variety continues, with selections from Scars and A Different Beat thrown in to keep things fresh and to keep audiences engaged. The variety doesn’t end when the collection’s first disc ends, either. Rather, it continues solidly throughout the whole of the compilation’s second disc. The maintained engagement insured through the compilation’s variety also insures listeners’ continued entertainment. Keeping that in mind, it becomes clear why the collection’s sequencing is just as important to its presentation as its songs. Even with all of this in mind, the set’s sequencing is not the last of its most important elements. The arrangements presented throughout the course of this collection play their own key part to its presentation, too.

The arrangements that are presented in this collection’s featured songs are so important to note because of the range of influences that they exhibit. throughout the course of the set’s two discs and 28 songs, audiences are treated to songs that clearly boast influence from the likes of Stevie Ray Vaughn, B.B. King, John Mayall and others. The 12-minute-plus ‘Ball and Chain’ is just one of the featured songs that conjures thoughts of Vaughn. That’s thanks not just because of the arrangement itself but also because of Moore’s own vocal delivery here. Moore actually sounds eerily like Vaughn here; so much so that it would be easy to mistake the two for one another. The collection’s opener, ‘Enough of the Blues’ conjures thoughts of King’s work with Eric Clapton on Riding With The King while ‘You Upset Me Baby’ is full on B.b. King style work. ‘Bring My Baby Back’ is more akin to works from John Mayall. ‘Evil,’ on the other hand could just as easily likened to works from Albert King, another of Moore’s contemporaries. Between these songs and the others included in Blues and Beyond, it becomes clear how important each influence and arrangement is to the collection’s whole. They show Moore’s expert ability to emulate the noted musicians while also paying tribute to them with his own works. It is a telling statement, needless to say. When this is kept in mind along with the collection’s featured songs and their sequencing, the whole of those elements makes the recording in whole one that, again, is sure to interest Moore’s fans as well as blues fans in general.

BMG and Sanctuary’s new Gary Moore compilation Blues and Beyond is a collection that is certain to interest Moore’s fans and blues aficionados alike. That is due in part to a set of songs that focuses primarily on a period in which Moore was devoted in his blues compositions. It also adds in a touch of his more experimental material for additional interest. The collection’s sequencing is just as certain to keep listeners engaged as the songs themselves. Much the same can be said of the songs’ arrangements. Each noted element is important in its own right to the whole of the collection’s presentation. All things considered, they make the collection in whole one that is as welcome an introduction to Moore’s work as a continuation for those fans already familiar with the famed guitarist. With that in mind, it is an interesting new collection that any blues fan will appreciate. It is available now in stores and online. More information on Blues and Beyond is available online now along with all of the latest Gary Moore news at:

Website: http://www.gary-moore.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/gmooreofficial

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Hazmat Modine’s New LP Is One Of 2016’s Top New Blues Albums

Courtesy:  Barbes Records

Courtesy: Barbes Records

Ten years ago Hazmat Modine fist introduced itself to the world.  That introduction came in the form of the band’s 2006 debut record Bahamut.  Almost as much time passed between that record and the release of the band’s second album 2011’s Cicada.  Now five years after its release and lots of frequent flyer miles later—the band did quite a bit of touring over the course of its first decade—the wait has finally ended for the release of the group’s third album Extra-Deluxe-Supreme.  The ten-song record is a solid new record from the New York-based collective and an equally solid introduction for those that might be less familiar with the band’s body of work.  It is a record that mixes elements of blues and jazz for a nearly hour-long musical experience (51 minutes to be exact) that fans of both genres will enjoy.  This applies to audiences both familiar and not so familiar with the band’s body of work.

Hazmat Modine’s new album Extra-Deluxe-Supreme has been a long time coming.  That goes without saying.  It was released early this past June roughly five years after the release of the bands sophomore studio offering Cicada.  Five years is a very long time between albums in the music industry.  So to finally have the album released had to have been a load off of the band and its fans alike.  Listening through the record’s ten total songs, it can be said that the work and the wait were both well worth it.  One of the songs that supports that statement comes late in the album’s run in the form of ‘All of My Days.’  That is due both to the song’s musical arrangement and its lyrical content.  In regards to its musical content, the song boasts a sound that can most easily be compared to that of blues legend B.B. King.  Speaking even more specifically, it sounds like something that he would have composed alongside fellow blues great Eric Clapton for the duo’s 2000 record Riding With The King.  Interestingly enough the musical component sounds like King’s work while vocalist Wade Schuman sounds more like Clapton than King.  It makes for an interesting musical arrangement to say the very least.  That is meant in a positive manner, too.  Its musical arrangement is just part of what makes this song stand out among its counterparts.  Its lyrical content is just as important to note.  Schuman sings in this song about life in general.  He notes about doing one’s best even throughout life and being the best that one can be.  It would explain the upbeat, celebratory nature of the song’s musical arrangement.  Taking that into consideration the combination of both elements makes the song al the more enjoyable.  It serves just as much to point out what makes Hazmat Modine’s new record a standout offering from the band.  It is not the record’s only standout song, though.  ‘Arcadia (Coffee, Salt and Laces)’ is another song exhibiting what makes Extra-Deluxe-Supreme stand out.

‘All of My Days’ is by itself a clear example of what makes Hazmat Modine’s new album a standout recording.  The songs musical arrangement conjures thoughts of songs composed by Eric Clapton and B.B. King for the pair’s 2000 record ‘Riding With The King.’  The song’s positive lyrical content strengthens the song even more.  The two halves come together to make the song one whole that stands out clearly from its counterparts.  It is not the only song included in this record that stands out. ‘Arcadia (Coffee, Salt and Laces)’ is another of the record’s most standout songs.  This song was recorded in studio.  But there is a certain element about it that conjures thoughts of the dimly lit blues clubs and juke joints of the genre’s early days; those little joints that were so populous along the so-called “Chitlin Circuit.”  That is evident throughout the song’s musical arrangement and production.  Schuman’s gravelly vocal delivery adds even more to that image.  Listening through the song’s lyrical content, that slow, pure 12-bar blues style arrangement becomes even more understandable.  That is because Schuman comes across here a man singing about just wanting to be back home.  As he sings in the song’s chorus, “Well I got my ticket/Ready to go/Well I got my passport out/When this storm is over/When this time is out/I’ll see my sweet Arcadia/I’ll be back home with you.”  Through each verse, Schuman’s subject keeps singing about being back home.  So there’s no room for doubt about the song’s lyrical topic.  It works expertly with the song’s musical arrangement and vice versa.  The two elements together make ‘All of My Days’ stand out even more and show why this the album in whole stands out.  It is not the last of the songs featured in this record that serves to exemplify the record’s positives.  ‘Plans’ serves to make this record stand out just as much as ‘All of My Days’ and ‘Arcadia (Coffee, Salt and Laces).’

‘All of My Days’ an ‘Arcadia (Coffee, Salt and Laces)’ are both key examples of what makes Hazmat Modine’s new record a collection of songs that was well worth the wait.  That is due to the combination of their musical arrangements and their companion lyrical content.  The two elements compliment each other expertly in each song resulting in two songs that make this record stand on its own merits and stand out among other blues records released so far this year.  As important as they are in exhibiting this they are not the album’s only key compositions.  ‘Plans’ is one more composition showing just what makes this record so well worth the wait.  In regards to its musical arrangement, it stands out because of the comparison that can be made to songs composed by the likes of Doctor John.  That is clear especially in the use of the song’s brass elements.  What is really interesting is that Schuman somehow managed to even deliver a vocal performance very much in the vein of Doctor John.  The sound of his delivery is clearly differentiated from that of Doctor John.  By the stylistic approach is so similar that it is uncanny.  That coupled with the song’s instrumental arrangement makes the song’s overall musical arrangement a solid foundation for the song.  It is not the only important aspect to the song.  The song’s lyrical content is just as important to its presentation as its musical arrangement.  It sounds kind of funny, but the song’s lyrical content is actually rather bland yet somehow so catchy.  Schuman sings here about a man who…well…has plans.  He has certain things on his “to-do” list.  And it is not a shot list either.  He wants to organize his drawers at home, paint his mom’s house, settle some scores downtown, and lots more.  In other words, this is a busy man.  That urgent list of items matches up relatively well with the song’s equally upbeat tempo.  There is no sense of being overly urgent or busy.  But the music helps to illustrate just how much there is to do and the feeling of energy that the song’s subject has in examining his list of plans.  It’s just a fun, lighthearted song that will put a smile on any listener’s face and leave listeners tapping their feet in time.  It is a direct contrast to the likes of the previously noted compositions, too.  That makes it stand out even more.  In turn, it makes the record stand out even more against its counterparts in the blues counterparts.  That is even truer when it is set against the other, previously noted songs and the rest of the songs not noted here.  All things considered, Extra-Deluxe-Supreme proves in the end to be, in this critic’s view, one of 2016’s top new jazz and blues records.

Hazmat Modinee’s new album Extra-Deluxe-Supreme is one of 2016’s top new jazz and blues records.  The ten-song, fifty-one minute record shows from beginning to end that it deserves its spot on that list, too both through its musical arrangements and its lyrical content.  The musical arrangements are largely original but still show influences of the group’s more well-known counterparts at points through its counterparts.  The end result is a musical experience that any blues aficionado will enjoy.  The songs’ lyrical themes add even more to that enjoyment.  From the mundane (‘Plans’) to the more thoughtful ‘Arcadia (Coffee, Salt and Lace)’ to the truly deep (‘All of My Days’) and all points in between, this record offers just as much entertainment and insight in its lyrical content as it does in its musical arrangements.  All things considered, the album proves in the end to be a joy for any lover of the blues.  It is, again, one of 2016’s top new blues offerings.  And it is available now and can be ordered direct online via the band’s website at http://hazmatmodine.com/sound.  More information on Extra-Deluxe-Supreme is available online now along with all of the band’s latest news, tour updates and more at http://hazmatmodine.com.

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Blues Hall Of Fame Grand Opening Scheduled For Today

There’s big news for blues fans today.

The Blues Hall of Fame will officially open for the first time ever this morning at 10amET. Today’s grand opening of the band new building was preceded last night by the annual Blues Music Awards, which is now in its 36th year. The awards ceremony was held in front of a sold out crowd of 1500 people in downtown Memphis, TN at the Cook Convention Center.

Photo Credit: Charles Ragsdale II

Blues Hall of Fame Inductees. Some of those featured include: Tommy Brown, Bobby Rush, Charlie Musselwhite, Eddie Shaw, Dick Waterman, Billy Boy Arnold, John Hammond, Big Jay McNeely, Otis Clay, Bruce Iglauer and Mike Kappus. Photo Credit: Charles Ragsdale II

Twenty-four awards were handed out at last night’s ceremony. Elvin Bishop was the night’s big winner with three awards. His latest full-length release Can’t Even Do Right won for Best New Album. His Band took top honors in the Band category. And the album’s title track won for Best Song. Other winners on the night included: Joe Bonamassa (Best Instrumentalist—Guitar), Selwyn Birchwood (Best New Artist Album—Don’t Call No Ambulance) and Johnny Winter (Best Rock Blues Album—Step Back). The complete list of this year’s Blues Music Awards is noted below.

Blues Music Award winners (final)

  1. Acoustic Album:  Timeless– John Hammond
  2. Acoustic Artist: John Hammond
  3. Album: Can’t Even Do Wrong Right– Elvin Bishop
  4. B.B. King Entertainer: Bobby Rush
  5. Band: Elvin Bishop Band 
  6. Best New Artist Album: Don’t Call No Ambulance– Selwyn Birchwood                 
  7. Contemporary Blues Album: BluesAmericana – Keb’ Mo’
  8. Contemporary Blues Female Artist: Janiva Magness   
  9. Contemporary Blues Male Artist: Gary Clark Jr.
  10. Historical: Soul & Swagger: The Complete “5” Royales 1951-1967 – The “5” Royales (Rock Beat)
  11. Instrumentalist-Bass: Lisa Mann
  12. Instrumentalist-Drums: Jimi Bott
  13. Instrumentalist-Guitar: Joe Bonamassa
  14. Instrumentalist-Harmonica: Charlie Musselwhite
  15. Instrumentalist-Horn: Deanna Bogart
  16. Koko Taylor Award: Ruthie Foster
  17. Pinetop Perkins Piano Player: Marcia Ball    
  18. Rock Blues Album: Step Back – Johnny Winter
  19. Song: “Can’t Even Do Wrong Right” written and performed by Elvin Bishop
  20. Soul Blues Album: Memphis Grease– John Németh
  21. Soul Blues Female Artist: Sista Monica
  22. Soul Blues Male Artist: Bobby Rush
  23. Traditional Blues Album:  For Pops (A Tribute to Muddy Waters)– Mud Morganfield & Kim Wilson
  24. Traditional Blues Male Artist: Lurrie Bell
Blues Hall of Fame inductees at BHOF ribbon cutting ceremony: Otis Clay, Eddie Shaw, Big Jay McNeely, Bobby Rush, John Hammond, Tommy Brown, Billy Boy Arnold. Photo by Mariah Selitsch

Blues Hall of Fame inductees at BHOF ribbon cutting ceremony: Otis Clay, Eddie Shaw, Big Jay McNeely, Bobby Rush, John Hammond, Tommy Brown, Billy Boy Arnold. Photo by Mariah Selitsch

On the eve of the Blues Hall of Fame’s official opening, Little Richard, Tommy Brown, and Eric Clapton became the institution’s latest inductees. They join the likes of B.B. King, Etta James, T-Bone Walker and one hundred forty-three others that have been inducted over the past three decades plus. Fifty-one non-performers have also been added to the hall along with eighty-three of the greatest blues singles ever crafted, and forty books and magazines centered on the blues.

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The Midnight Special’s Re-Issues Will Have Audiences Singing, Dancing Well Past Midnight

Courtesy:  StarVista Entertainment/Time Life Entertainment/NBC

Courtesy: StarVista Entertainment/Time Life Entertainment/NBC

StarVista Entertainment and Time Life Entertainment have made quite the name for themselves over the course of recent years.  Releases of classic series such as The Carol Burnett Show, Mama’s Family, The Dean Martin Show, China Beach, and most recently The Wonder Years have taken a company that for years was the butt of many people’s jokes to a place in the upper echelons of home entertainment companies.  For years, Time Life was known mainly for the not-so-well-known products that it pushed through extended advertisements on television.  Now it has carved out even more of a comfortable place in that upper echelon with the release of The Midnight Special on DVD.  The classic late night live concert series was released in a number of formats last month, resurrecting one more important piece of television and music history.  The show’s six-disc collector’s edition is one of the best of the sets that any fan of classic television and music can add to their own home library.  That is because it is one of the best examples of what made this series so great during its nine-year run on NBC.  It presents ninety-six total performances from bands, artists and groups across the music industry’s spectrum.  The acts that make appearances throughout the set’s six discs are the center of this box set’s enjoyment and success.  Just as important to note is the quality of the footage.  More than four decades have passed since the Midnight Special first debuted in 1972.  In that time, the footage presented in these performances has stood the test of time quite well.  And last but not least worth noting in the set’s success is its companion booklet.  The booklet serves as an episode guide for viewers.  That is the central point of its importance.  It also features personal insight from the series’ creator Burt Sugarman. Sugarman’s retrospection on the series and its importance adds one more layer of appreciation for this series.  Together with the acts that appear on each set and the quality of the footage, all three factors together make The Midnight Train another wonderful release from Time  Life Entertainment and StarVista Entertainment.

The Midnight Special was one of the most famed and beloved series on television during its day.  Unlike so many other series of the time, acts that came on the series in its heydey actually sang instead of lip synching.  What’s more, unlike American Bandstand, The Midnight Special focused on more than just the big pop acts of its day.  The acts that came to perform on NBC’s live overnight concert series spanned the music world’s ranks.  That is the most important aspect of this recently released classic series.  The acts that performed on The Midnight Special included the likes of John Denver performing alongside Linda Rondstadt and Aerosmith performing alongside Barry White, The Stylistics, and ELO.  It also featured acts the likes of: B.B. King, Frankie Vallie, Sammy Hagar, The O’Jays, BeeGees, and so many other greats that are still remembered today.  Even the show’s host himself, radio host Wolfman Jack was a celebrity in his own right.  Even today, he and those acts noted here are just as beloved as they were decades ago.  In an era when so many musical acts are little more than flash-in-the-pan pop acts and rarely radio worthy rock bands, musicaians and audiences alike need to be reminded of what once made music great and could again–originality and real talent.  That in mind, it makes sense that the list of performers that came on The Midnight Special is the central point of this series’ success whether in its six-disc box set or its other formats.

The list of artists, bands, and groups that graced The Midnight Special’s stage during its nine-year run on NBC is the most important aspect of this series’ recent re-issue.  More than four decades have passed since it first debuted on NBC in 1972.  That makes for plenty of reason to be concerned about the quality of the show’s footage in its transfer from tape to disc.  Luckily for audiences of all ages, painstaking efforts were taken to present the performances as they appeared in their original broadcasts. Those efforts paid off in spades as both the audio and video of each performance have been well-balanced.  Any impurities in the quality of the footage whether in the audio or video are so minute that they are unnoticable.  The end result is a product that for the show’s original audiences will generate a much-welcomed sense of nostalgia.  Both for those same audiences and the show’s much younger audiences, it also serves to show just how far music has come (both in a good and bad way) and how far recording technology has come, too.  So in the end, the quality of the footage in these performances makes Time Life and StarVista’s new re-issue of The Midnight Special even more enjoyable for audiences of all ages.

The efforts taken to transfter The Midnight Special’s master tapes to disc have definitely not been for nothing.  The show looks and sounds just as good as it did in its original run all those years ago in its rencet re-issue.  The acts that appeared on the show (and that are featured on the new six-disc compilation) are just as important to the overall presentation.  Both aspects together more than make the series worth a watch or two in any of its three re-issue formats.  The last aspect of the series’ re-issue (at least in its six-disc compilation format) that makes it a success and so enjoyable is the set’s companion booklet.  The booklet serves primarily as an episode guide, pointing out disc-by-disc and episode-by-episode each artist, band, and group that appears.  That listing even includes the songs performed by said acts.  By itself, the episode listing more than helps the enjoyment of the series’ re-issue.  The added insight from series creator Burt Sugarman adds one more layer of enjoyment to the series’ various presentations.  In terms of the six-disc box set, Sugarman recalls how so few people had faith in the show and how great it felt to prove those naysayers wrong.  That insight along with other comments from Sugarman make for even more interest and enjoyment in watching the performances culled for the show’s different re-issues.  While being the last of the noteworthy factors that make The MIdnight Special so…well…special, it is hardly the least important of the factors that make the series’ sets such a joy.  This aspect, along with the quality production values and the performances culled for the releases, makes The Midnight Special a truly special experience for viewers of all ages.

The Midnight Special is available online now.  Its eleven-disc and sixteen disc sets can be ordered online direct from Time Life’s online store at http://timelife.com/products/the-midnight-special-collector-s-edition.  The six-disc collector’s edition can be ordered via Amazon at http://www.amazon.com/Midnight-Special-6DVD-Amaray/dp/B00L9OPJ5C/ref=sr_1_1?s=movies-tv&ie=UTF8&qid=1414009549&sr=1-1&keywords=The+Midnight+Special.  More information on this and other releases from Time Life Entertainment and StarVista Entertainment is available online at:

Website: http://www.timelife.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/TimeLifeUS

Twitter: http://twitter.com/TimeLifeUS

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Music Legends To be Inducted Into Memphis Music Hall Of Fame Thursday

Courtesy: Bob Merlis/M.H.F.

The Memphis Music Hall of Fame will become a reality this week.  After years of talks and work, the very first class of musicians will be inducted into the Hall this Thursday at the Canon Center for Performing Arts.  Among the artist included in the inaugural class of inductees are:  W.C. Handy, Elvis Presley, Jerry Lee Lewis, and Al Green.  Also included in this year’s class are some lesser known but still respected musicians such as:  jazz saxophonist George Coleman, gospel songwriter Lucie Campbell, and W.T. McDaniel, Booker T. Washington High School bandmaster.

The Memphis Music Hall of Fame initiative is part of the Smithsonian-connected Memphis Rock ‘n’ Soul Museum.  Memphis Rock ‘n’ Soul Museum Executive Director John Doyle shared his thoughts on the importance of the Music Hall’s inaugural event.  “We wanted to keep the ticket prices low, in order for the public to be able to come out”, said Doyle.  General admission tickets for the event are available for as little as $30.  Doyle added noting, “A lot of what we want to do with the Hall of Fame is about education both through the website and the gallery, but a lot of it is about paying tribute and really giving tribute to the musicians who put Memphis on a global map.  And we want the public to share in that.”

The inaugural Memphis Music Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony will take place this Thursday at 7pm at the Canon Center for Performing Arts at 225 N. Main in Memphis.  Tickets are available for $30, $50, and $100.  They can be purchased at any Ticketmaster location or online at http://www.ticketmaster.com.  They can also be purchased via phone at 1-800-745-3000.  More information on this Thursday’s even it available online at http://memphisrocknsoul.org

The inaugural class of inductees into the Memphis Music Hall of Fame is as follows:

Estelle Axton and Jim Stewart

Bobby “Blue” Bland

Booker T. and the M.G.’s

Lucie Campbell

George Coleman

Jim Dickinson

Al Green

W.C. Handy

Isaac Hayes

Howlin’ Wolf

B.B. King

Jerry Lee Lewis

Jimmie Lunceford

Professor W.T. McDaniel

Memphis Minnie

Willie Mitchell

Dewey Phillips

Sam Phillips

Elvis Presley

Otis Redding

The Staple Singers

Rufus Thomas

Three 6 Mafia

Nat D. Williams

ZZ Top

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Joe Bonamassa adds one more to the list of 2012’s great live recordings

Joe Bonamassa is a modern day music legend.  This guitar virtuoso is right up there with the likes of Stevie Ray Vaughan, Joe Satriani, B.B. King and so many other guitar greats.  That multi-faceted mix of raw talent has been expertly captured on his new live double disc dvd, “Beacon Theatre:  Live From new York.”

Bonamassa and his band are shown at the top of their game in this performance, recorded last year.  From the raw energy of ‘Cradle Rock’ to the beautiful, emotional ‘Bird on a Wire’ to the Jimi Hendrix-esque ‘Blue and Evil’, there is little, if anything, bad that can be said of Joe Bonamasa and company in this performance.  The entire band shines both on its own and as a supporting act to guest artists Beth Hart, John Hiatt, and Paul Rodgers (Free, Bad Company, The Firm).  Audiences really do feel the respect between the band and the guest vocalists throughout the duration of the concert.

Of course, those moments aren’t all that make this performance so great.  One of the greatest moments of the show comes in the show’s closer, ‘Young Man Blues.’  The control of drummer Tal Bergman is immense with each (yes,each) drum solo used to set up each segment of the song.  It does so to help build the anticipationof what’s to come next.  the music presented by Joe Bonamasa and his bandmates makes for an outstanding show.  But one would be remiss to ignore the show’s production values, as they add their own element to the overall enjoyment of seeing J.B. and company live.

Kudos are in order to director Scot McFadyen and eveybody behind the scenes of the show.  The video and audio are very well balanced throughout the course of the concert.  This is the case both on the blu-ray and standard def dvd presentation.  The video is especially clear on both versions, as the concert was shot in high definition.  So no matter which format audiences may choose, they will be getting an excellent presention, all the way around.  Combine the top notch production values of the concert recording with a solid set list, and audiences get a show that is easily one of the best home live releases of the year.

For fans who want more new material from Joe, fear not.  Joe has a new album out later this month titled, “Driving Towards The Daylight.”  And in support of the album, he’s already headed out on a tour that will take him straight through December.  North Carolina fans will be excited to know that Joe will be making a stop at the nationally known Durham Performing Arts Center on November 28th.  Fans can check into tickets and more on the DPAC website, http://www.dpacnc.com.  Joe’s fans can follow his tour news and more online at http://www.jbonamasa.com, on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/JoeBonamassa, and on Twitter at http://twitter.com/JBONAMASSA