Who is Joe Bonamassa? He’s the guitar player who at age twelve (12!) opened 20 shows for the legendary BB King. He’s the musician who played Royal Albert Hall, performing a duet with Eric Clapton. He’s the songwriter/artist with 13 of his last 15 albums hitting number one on the Billboard Blues Chart. He’s the musician who has had two Grammy nominations. Joe Bonamassa is a blues player, a rocker, a guitar virtuoso, a master storyteller and an ultimate entertainer.
Opening with Tiger In Your Tank. Joe and his band immediately roused the crowd with his guitar riffs at the extreme upper range of his guitar and showed off his amazing finger work in Just Cause You Can. Every member of his amazing group – Reese Wynans on keyboard (Double Trouble and Captain Beyond), Anton Fig on drums (Kiss and David Letterman band), Michael Rhodes on bass (Faith Hill, Kenny Chesney, Dixie Chicks), Lee Thornburg on trumpet (Supertramp, Tower of Power), Paulie Cerra on Sax (Lucky Peterson, Little Milton, Lionel Richey) and Jade MacRae and Mahalia Barnes vocalists – had ample opportunity to showcase their incredible talents during the two hour performance. Self Inflicted Wounds was pure old school blues with red lights and muted trumpet opening the number, Joe’s guitar crying throughout the song and Jade and Mahalia ending the song with incredible solos. Blues of Desperation set an entirely different scene with a tribal blues feel interjected with hard rock intervals and a bass that sounded like a didgeridoo. Both the sax and trumpet had outstanding solos during Never Make Your Move Too Soon. Joe Bonamassa finished his two hours set with the revival blues sound of Last Kiss featuring a duel between his phenomenal guitar playing and Reese Wynans on the keyboard as well as an incredible drum solo by Anton Fig.
So who is Joe Bonamassa? He’s the blues rocker whose long fingers caress the guitar to make it cry, weep, shout, sing, and laugh while he sings his stories. He’s the man who has his unique version of blues running through his veins instead of blood. Joe Bonamassa is the ultimate blues musician.