The “Blues” music fans of West Yorkshire, are in for a spectacular Sunday at the Duck and Drake in Leeds, on 13th August, when two of the bands who appeared at the 1st Leeds Blues Festival, play a "Blues" double-header starting at 5-00pm.
Dr Brown and the Groovecats…..The ultra-professional Dr Brown and the Groovecats are without doubt “Legends” of the “Blues” circuit. No “Blues Festival” would be complete without the usual stunning performance from this truly gifted band.
Crosscut Saw…..Pure raw 24-7 blues at its best, with Alex Eden giving it the full treatment with guitar, harmonica and vocals. Listening to the bands excellent “In debt ? you bet” CD, just leaves you drooling in anticipation for the bands next stunning blues gig.
KIERAN HALPIN GLORY NIGHT
The golden ambience of the Grove Inn, with its subtle lighting, was the perfect backdrop for a rare appearance in Leeds, of Irish singer-songwriter Kieran Halpin. If there is a god, and he does hand talent out, then Kieran, must surely have been at the front of the queue. With his pleasing Irish accent, the evening just flowed along, conjuring up imagery of life’s rich tapestry, as only Kieran can achieve. The clarity, power and passion of his lyrics, make the listener stand back and take stock, and then realise they are in the presence of a song-writing giant. To single out certain songs is difficult, as each song has its own merits, and memorable lyrics, but mention must be made of his classic tracks, “Walk like a champion“, “Glory days”, “This isn’t bad only different”, “The old simplicity” and “Closing time in paradise”. In a world of manufactured bands and singers, it is uplifting to know, that there are still quality performers, writing meaningful songs of substance, and in Kieran Halpin you can get no better.
The “Grove” in Leeds, was at its foot-tapping best, as The Durbervilles appeared in Leeds for the first time in many months. As ever with this band, expectations are always high and the band never disappoints its loyal following. The enjoyment displayed by each band member, gives their gigs a party atmosphere while also providing evidence of how highly accomplished they each are as musicians. With two highly acclaimed CDs behind them, “Striving to be reasonable” and “The ballpark of expectation”, work is now at an advanced stage for a third album. New tracks off the forthcoming CD included “The Queens Train” and “No Not Tonight” which worked well between such Durbervilles classics as, “Cracking Edge”, “Door to Door Man” and “Back Street Hollywood”. The band consisting of lead singer Lee Walsh, Drummer Mark Boyce, Bass Guitarist Jayne Belcher, Accordian player Gus Taylor and the multi-talented David Crickmore, have a very special feel and quality woven into their music, which sends the appreciative audience home with a spring in their step, and many a good song running through their heads.
GARFORTH CHARMS SNAKE DAVIS
From “busking” in Leeds city centre while attending the Leeds College of Music many years ago, to touring the world with MPeople, The Pet Shop Boys and the Eurythmics, Snake Davis is an inspiration to musicians of all levels. The consummate professional arrived at Garforth Holiday Inn from the Royal Albert Hall, where he had been playing the day before. In the packed venue with standing room only for late arrivals, Snake Davis went through his array of Saxophones, alto, soprano, baritone and tenor as well as flutes, whistles and shakuhachi. One area which is noticeable, is how much more at ease he seems to be when talking with the audience, a very personal man, Snake always appeared to prefer his immense talents to do his talking for him, but now he enjoys the interaction with his loyal followers, this added to the intimacy and enjoyment of the gig. All the classic Snake Davis tracks were there including the theme from “Taxi” to Melencholy Serenade, Its Only Natural, Now’s The Time and an incredible version of “Suspicious Minds”, which had all age groups dancing for all they were worth. Garforth Festival Director Dave Evans and his staff deserve great credit for attracting performers of the highest quality to the Garforth Arts Festival, more power to their combined elbows.