If every member of ROOMFUL OF BLUES - past and present - were to represent a room in a house, this house would certainly be the creme de la creme of real estate. Not only would it be huge, but it'd be classy as well. This crib would rival any mansion or castle.
With all due respect to all the former members (way too many to name here), some of whom will no doubt go on the become legends, the recent ensemble featuring the very talented MARK DU FRESNE was one of my favorite representations of ROOMFUL OF BLUES. Therefore, you can imagine my anxiety as I anticipated seeing yet another "new guy" at this evenings performance.
Cutting to the chase, for those of you who may be as equally anxious as I was, let me quickly say this. The house is in good hands. As it turned out, since seeing the band back in February, the "new guy" wound up being the "new guys". Not one, but three rooms, as I like to say, were re-arranged.
Recently, CHRIS VACHON, the bands leader as well as it's excellent guitarist, producer and songwriter; RICH LA TAILLE, one third of the world's greatest horn section, the bands tenor and alto sax player as well as their elder statesman; Mainstay BOB ENOS, the extraordinary trumpet player, and another third of the world's greatest horn section; MARK EARLEY, who completes the worlds greatest horn section playing tenor and baritone sax; and TRAVIS COLBY the phenomenal piano and Hamond B3 player; welcomed newcomers EPHRAIM LOWELL on drums, DIMA GORODETSKY on upright & electric bass and front man DAVE HOWARD on vocals & harmonica, to the band.
Just as past changes have never distracted from this incredible band, this evenings performance made it quite clear to all in attendance that neither has the current changes. Obviously, the equation of "talent + talent = talent" always seems to work.
Considering the fact that DAVE had to learn, and perform, all of his predecessor's music, a bit of apprehension was evident. However, it was a non issue. The guys played nearly a three hour, two set show that drew a raucous standing ovation and encore call.
I'm looking very forward to the band putting some new material together that will represent the new cast. And, when they do, I'm sure the results will be another typical ROOMFUL OF BLUES masterpiece.
Click HERE for photos from the show.