Gig: John O’Leary – Liverpool – 21 Feb

Posted on: Monday, Feb 18, 2008

Don’t forget The John O’Leary Band at The Harbourside Club this Thursday, 21st February.

John O'Leary



February 27th, 2008 at 00:42
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The show started late due to van trouble (that old chestnut!) and lasted for over an hour. I felt the band never really got into its stride but came close. The material was jazzier and funkier than I expected and I consequently enjoyed it more. Their website describes them as ‘Progressive Blues’ and I can’t argue with that. The band looked very relaxed and seemed to enjoy themselves.

From the outset, the bass player (ROGER INNISS) caught both my eye and my ear. Easily the most charismatic of the bunch, he led the band from the hip. Extremely tight performances were delivered from JULES FOTHERGILL (lead guitar), “MR JOOLS” GRUDGINGS (keyboards) and JOACHIM GREVE (drums).

Frontman and singer, O’Leary generously let the band do their thing with only occasional help from him adding some great harp and verse to taste. The healthy crowd enjoyed a set that was varied and avoided drawn out soloing, which can sometimes be associated with jazz and blues gigs.

I came as a relative newcomer to the blues scene on Liverpool and my first time at the Harbourside Club, which felt ideally suited to a relaxing evening of live music. One thing that irked me was that the drums would have benefited from being miked up but perhaps time disallowed it.