by Don Brown Sr.
The Jazz Internet
Las Vegas Jazz n' Blues
Boulder Blues Site
Recently the Joint at the Hard Rock paid homage to Jeff Beck. The one time Yardbirds guitarist quickly proceeded to prove why he is one of the best and most influential fretmen of all time.
His fans all know that he will play whatever he desires. He doesn't have a full time singer or a horde of hit singles he must play every night.
Jeff Beck's new offerings are full of electronic effects. And his latest release is an extention of 1999's Who Else!. His guitar playing isn't distracted by the effects, nor do they enhance his music. Sometimes only his guitar is needed and not even a backing band. He never uses a mic, so we never hear from Beck himself. Instead, his band provides a solid backbeat that helps him throughout the entire show.
His back rhythm guitarist sang on the song "Rolling and Tumbling", a nice surprise off his You Had It Coming CD released this year. The highlight of the evening was his version of the Beatles "A Day In The Life". Beck took this song and made it his own. Next time Jeff Beck comes to town, make a point to see him. Don't expect him to do his old stuff because he's not looking back, only forward.
Jef Beck's opening act was Willy Porter, who got the crowd's attention after the very first song. By the time he played "Moonbeam", the crowd seemed very receptive, which is difficult to achieve in front of the many loyal Jeff Beck fans. When he closed his 45 minute set with "Angry Words", I think a few people in the audience wanted to hear some more angry verbage from Willy in the future.
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