Saturday night we attended the release party for Steve Strongman's new album, Blues In Colour and it was a great night. If you've been reading my exploits here, you know that my wife is a big fan of Steve Strongman, so we've seen him live about four times in the last 12 months. And the Studio Theatre at Hamilton Place is the way to go! It's an intimate venue, if you buy your tickets early you get a table in the middle of the room, a place to keep your beverage, and a small lamp so you can read the upcoming events brochure. We were at table 9, on the stage right side of the room, second row of stations. Close with a great sightline. The couple we shared the space with were not chatters, so we didn't find out much about them. It was clear that they were fans though...and they enjoyed Coors Lite!
The show started with Harrison Kennedy, playing the country blues on an old Stella. Very authentic, although Harrison still needs a bit of work on his guitar playing, but compared to what he was doing a couple years ago he's coming along. His voice is powerful and pure, just like when he sang "Give Me Just a Little More Time" with the Chairmen of the Board. He closed with that one...acapella! Nice touch. He has a new CD coming along very soon.
Then a ten or fifteen minute break, for everyone to pick up a couple more brews, or to check out the merch counter and it was the Steve Strongman Band. Just a trio, they make enough noise although I do miss Jesse O'Brien tickling the ivories! This time the trio was Alec Fraser on bass, and Dave King on drums. Oh, and of course, Steve Strongman on lead guitar and vocals. Dave King produced this latest album and if the live versions of the songs are any indication, this album is a keeper.
Steve usually puts on a great show, and this weekend he didn't disappoint. Of course, when everybody in the audience is either family or friend it's not hard to feel comfortable.
The crowd sure loved him. And he loved 'em back. Although...asking after every song "Is everybody having a good time?" did get a little tired after a while...I would've thought it was obvious...everybody was having a great time. Especially those girls at the back!
I am not going to spend a lot of time describing the show, just to say whether on electric or acoustic, or harmonica, Steve Strongman is a bluesman to be reckoned with. Grab yourself a copy of Blues in Colour or Honey slip it into the car CD player, and crank the volume up. Roll down the windows. Get out on the open road. And have a ball! Oh! And if Steve and band come anywhere close...make sure you're there!