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Jeff Beck with the Imelda May Band: Indigo2


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Veteran guitar legend presents a rocking romp through his record collection accompanied by Irish chanteuse Imelda May and her band.

What a show, and not a silver lining in sight, as one of the genuine guitar greats wowed an Indigo2 audience, which included Ronnie Wood and Jimmy Page, with a homage to the music that inspired him in the 1950s and 60s.

The premise, as introduced by promoter Harvey Goldsmith, was for Beck and the band to bring to life records, perhaps overlooked by modern audiences, from the likes of Johnny Burnett, Booker T and the Shadows.

Not quite what all the audience was expecting but it turned out to be an inspired evening's entertainment, with Beck - dressed in black save for white boots and scarf - on blistering form.

He was ably backed by Imelda May, who deserves to be a big star, and her band, featuring guitarist Darrell Higham, bass player Al Gare and drummer Steve Rushton.

While it's all too easy to label people with the genius tag Beck is one of the few who truly deserve to be considered as such. He it proved last night, producing sounds one would never imagine could be discovered on a guitar.

Beck, to the uninitiated, was one of a clutch of British guitar superstars to emerge from the vibrant London music scene of the late 1960s, the most famous of whom are Eric Clapton, Jimmy Page and Peter Green.

Despite early chart success with Hi Ho Silver Lining, still a radio staple, Beck set about carving a career for himself pushing the boundaries of what it's possible to do with the electric guitar.

Beck's virtuosity was evident from the first note and he proceeded to rip through a catalogue of songs, which included tracks by Elvis or Howlin' Wolf and even Judy Garland.

There were many highlights, but a stunning version of Lilac Wine, with Beck's fluid guitar lines perfectly complementing May's impassioned vocals was a genuine showstopper - emotional without being overblown.

He dedicated a vibrant vibrato version of The Shadows' Apache to Hank Marvin, the man he claimed inspired every kid to "go out and steal a Fender Strat", while an excellent cover of Booker T and the MG's Green Onions put the groove into proceedings.

Towards the end of the show Beck invited Wood and Page to join him on stage. The fact they were sitting in the balcony might have prevented them joining in, although Beck had a bit of fun at their expense, claiming they were "too chicken".

After a rousing Rock Around The Clock, with Darrell Higham taking the vocal duties, the show closed with an instrumental rendition of Somewhere Over The Rainbow which highlighted Beck's mastery of tone and phrasing.

It could be argued that Beck should be a far bigger star than he already is but his diffident stage manner, mumbled anecdotes and half-told jokes, probably precludes that.

But who needs repartee when the guitar can do all the talking in such style.

Despite having just over 24 hours to put the show together Beck was delighted with how it turned out and afterwards he told The Wharf he is keen to take the show to the West End.

He said: "All respect to these guys, they really live this music. They look like they have just stepped out from a 1950s catalogue.

"I really want people to hear more of the stuff from the 1950s, not just Elvis but things from before him, and I'd love to take the show to the West End.

"If Mama Mia can be a success then I don't see why a show like this wouldn't be as well."

Whether that's possible without Beck's electrifying presence is a moot point but the first of the American Express-sponsored showcases was excellent.

More big names are promised, with an announcement due next week, but they will have to go some to beat this.

source here: review

There is also a photo of Jeff, Jimmy and Ronnie together on photographer Ross Halfin site.

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I don't know if I'm allowed to cite from Ross Halfin's diary. He has written about this and there are some interesting thoughts.

His diary is public isn't it? I think it should be ok.

You mean the invitation to Jimmy to join Beck on stage right?

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His diary is public isn't it? I think it should be ok.

You mean the invitation to Jimmy to join Beck on stage right?

Yes his diary is public, but he was not happy with people taking his photos elsewhere before. So I won't cite him directly here, but I think a link is decent.

The new entry

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Apparently Jimmy also attended Terry Reid's June gig @ Ronnie Scott's:

"...The seeming lifetimes that some have waited for these evenings are already validated by Without Expression alone, in this all-a-tingle room, with Jimmy Page in unobtrusive mid-week attendance..."

He doesn't forget his heroes and friends... such is the awesomness of Mr. James Patrick Page.

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Page is still hangin' out with Ronnie Wood, huh? Thats pretty cool. If I'm not mistaken Wood is the only guitarist to ever play onstage with Zeppelin (other than Page, of course).

2/12/75 Uniondale NY - Communication Breakdown

The guitarist from Bad Company also has, forget his name. He also played "Money" with Santana in 1980.

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