Plenty of Brumbeat groups news this month:
It was a packed night at The Asylum for a recent benefit gig
for Brums finest sax player Mike Burney from Great Barr. Mike has played with the greatest of the greats including Steve Winwood,Memphis Slim, Chaka Khan, Sammy Davis Jnr but I think we Brummies tend to think of him with Birminghams own WIZZARD
|(Wizzard with Mike second from the right)|
Brilliant night.... Mike Burney's name even managed to get Johnny Neal out of the house
and support the gig, now that is no mean achievement, good one Johnny!!
Johnny and Steve were spotted having a chat, and it was very nice to see these two great vocalists together again.
|Steve Gibbons and Johnny Neal|
On the previous Saturday it was glad tidings all round as Mike Burney married his childhood sweetheart Sue Jeffs. Mike's illustrious musical history is well known in Brums music circles and some of the good and the notorious
were present for the couples day and later on for a Jam at The Wheatsheaf.
Steve's 'Joe Cool' persona is what it is, and always has been. He is a REAL Brummie hero and is regaled with much affection by those who know what good music is. I can't think of a time when Steve hasn't stuck to his guns regarding his musical tastes, plain and honest good music, no frills. You really have to admire that resilience and determination. He has been exactly the same since I first met him in 1964.
With class like that, it's no wonder that he is still performing practically every night whether with The Steve Gibbons Band or The Dylan Project or just Steve and his guitar doing solo spots. I am one of the people who have worked with Steve in the past and we had some great fun along the way. He is the most professional of musicians and knows what he wants from those around him and likewise, those around him want to deliver. It was always fantastic to play with him and I learnt a lot about stagecraft from him too.
I have to say that Steve is always the first person to put his name forward for these benefit gigs if he's available, which merits a special thank you from me and probably from all the music fraternity of the Brumbeat generation in which Steve played such a massive part in that story. It's about time he was truly recognised for his generosity and I think "Sir Gibbo of Harborne" has a nice ring to it.
Steve's recent collection of songs is probably one of his absolute best and is a real must to buy. For more information on Brums greatest vocalist ever
visit Steves Facebook page to get all the new info about gigs, Downloads, CD's etc or even better, catch the Maestro live.
MOTHERS BLUE PLAQUE
Well it's been a long time coming and even then there was continuing information about just when the blue plaque for MOTHERS,
Erdington would be unveiled. Unfortunately I only got to know about it after the event had happened. MOTHERS was voted the best gig in the world by Rolling Stone magazine following a survey of musicians during it's life 68-71.
It was already a well known gig as The Carlton before it's name change and was a brilliant venue to play at. Many great bands also played there like John Mayalls Bluesbreakers, John Lee Hooker and more plus a host of great Brummie bands.
The plaque was unveiled during Erdington Village Fete
by John Singer and Gary Surman. The unveiling was followed by a gig featuring The Travelling Pilbury's
who played their varied musical set of 60's classics.
Some of the old musical faces were there including
Keith Smart who had left the confines of his golf club secretary's office and bought himself some new jeans to show how trendy he is. Along with Keith were Danny King, Dave Scott-Morgan and a few more.
I don't believe that any of those 3 played there when it was Mothers but certainly had featured there in its Carlton days.
I am a really happy guy to have received the news that another bunch of my old muso mates have got a band together.
|(l-r Bob Styler, Dave Hynds, Michelle Williams, Danny Gallagher, Cliff Ogden)|
The band, Critical Mass features some great names from the Brumbeat days with Bob Styler (Yamps/Traction), Danny Gallagher (The Solitaires/Traction/Frosty Moses), Dave Hynds (Cheetahs/Fairfield Ski) and the World Famous Oggie, Cliff Ogden (Fashion/Traction). These guys have recruited songstress Michelle Williams and are playing gigs. They played their first (pictured above) at The British Legion and will be doing a gig in Tewkesbury this coming Saturday for the Air Ambulance, a real worthy cause if ever there was. I'm really chuffed to see these guys on stage again, like I said last month....never stop playing and never give up. Go and see them if you're in the Tewkesbury area, they are all great Brumbeat musicians and have a wealth of music experience behind them and, judging by this dynamic photograph your'e going to hear something special.
One last thing.
So the Duchess had her offspring and naturally, with the childs father being a firm Aston Villa fan, it was only fitting that the sproglet should recieve his first football kit as a welcome to the world gift
Cheers me Dears