Joe Bonamassa’s Stunning Blues Rock – Take Two Shots Of Sloe Gin And Call Me Anytime!!!

Today’s post goes out to the irascible Peter O’Toole who passed away at the age of 81, and a friend who I have not seen in years, but who was such a good and dear soul… Daniel Escobar.  Actors, both… The world is a little darker today.  I think I’ll need to watch Lawrence of Arabia and  My Favorite Year  for both of you.  😦

Joe Bonamassa is one of those guys who I had heard of for a long while… and for whatever reason, I kept at arm’s length.  I really do not know why, but I never really explored.

That is until my friend, Robert… musician, winemaker and guru of both at the fabulous Artiste in Los Olivos pushed the issue.  If Robert tells you to do something, you do it… and willingly so.

Yeah… I was an idiot.  Joe will blow you away.  NO!!! JOE.  WILL.  BLOW.  YOU.  AWAY!!!

And live?  I saw him for the first time on Friday night at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood.  Seats were a bit high and the two Hank Schrader wannabes in front of me could not shut themselves up, but it was one of the best live shows I have ever seen.  He will push you to the verge of tears… His tone and sounds are breathtaking.  His music, both originals and a lot of great covers, is stunning.

The first half was an acoustic set that blew my mind… and then he completely blew it out with a raucous, electric set, that plugged it all in and let it all loose.

This is an artist you MUST see live.  He is even better than on record… and that says a hell of a lot.

I started off with three albums… Dust Bowl, Sloe Gin and Live From Nowhere In Particular.  Love ’em all.

Soulful… gritty… amazing Blues Rock.  You’ll hear The Allman Brothers, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Eric Clapton, John Hiatt and a whole lot of blues… So good.  Soooooo gooooood!!!  Check out the great duet he does with Hiatt on “Tennessee Plates” from his Dust Bowl album.

Prodigy?  Ummm… He started playing at 4, and was opening for B.B. King at 12.


This according to Wikipedia:  “He began his career playing guitar in the band Bloodline, which also featured the offspring of Miles Davis, Robby Krieger of The Doors, and Berry Oakley of The Allman Brothers Band.  He released his first solo album A New Day Yesterday in 2000, and has since released nine more solo studio albums, six live albums and nine live DVDs, along with three albums with the band Black Country Communion, one with funk super-group Rock Candy Funk Party and two albums in collaboration with vocalist Beth Hart.”

“He received his first guitar from his father at the age of 4, and by age 7 he was playing Stevie Ray Vaughan and Jimi Hendrix tunes note for note. At the age of 11, during a short period of being mentored by Danny Gatton, he learned such styles as country and jazz as well as polka. During this time with Gatton, Bonamassa sat in with Gatton’s band whenever they played in New York. He first opened for B. B. King at 12 years of age.”

So yeah… there’s that.

And y’all know I LOVE Black Country Communion!!!

My favorite song may be his cover of “Sloe Gin”.  It is listed on the setlist below (incorrectly) as a Tim Curry cover… Yes, that Tim Curry… the amazing Tim Curry… and can be found on Tim’s 1978 album Read My Lips… which features the great Nils Lofgren.  I so need to check that record out!  The song is actually written by Bob Ezrin and the late, great Michael Kamen.

Since my friend Jason recommends his Live From The Royal Albert Hall… CD and DVD… Check that version out HERE!  “Django” also moves me beyond words… So many of his songs do,

And here is another bonus video, because I like you.

Eric Clapton and Joe

So please, do me a favor… go get some Joe… take two shots of Sloe Gin… and call me whenever you want!

And to my friends… let music soothe your weary soul, guide you on your journey and give you peace and joy… even when you are in the Blues…


  1. Woke Up Dreaming
  2. Seagull 
(Bad Company cover)
  3. Jelly Roll 
(Charles Mingus cover)
  4. Black Lung Heartache
  5. Around the Bend
  6. Jockey Full of Bourbon 
(Tom Waits cover)
  7. Stones in My Passway 
(Robert Johnson cover)
  8. Ball Peen Hammer 
(Chris Whitley cover)
  9. Athens to Athens
  10. Dust Bowl
  11. Who’s Been Talking 
(Howlin’ Wolf cover)
  12. Midnight Blues 
(Gary Moore cover)
  13. Dislocated Boy
  14. Driving Towards the Daylight
  15. Slow Train
  16. Crossroads 
(Robert Johnson cover)
  17. Sloe Gin 
(Tim Curry cover)
  18. The Ballad of John Henry
  19. Django
  20. Mountain Time

PS and by the way…

Zakk Wylde, “former guitarist for Ozzy Osbourne, and founder of the heavy metal band Black Label Society,” came out for “Crossroads” and the two absolutely shredded it.  Damn!!!



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Filed under Life... Plain and Not So Simple, Live Music Reviews, Marc's Mixed Bag - A Little Of Everything, Marc's Playlist - Music That Moves Me

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