Appearing box fresh from a main supporting slot at Eric Clapton’s Royal Albert Hall residency, a sharp-suited, slick greased hair Jimmie Vaughan presents himself onstage at Dingwalls tonight looking the real dapper deal as the relaxed band leader of legend.
With the labour of love new album Baby, Please Come Home released on the same day as this full to capacity club show, JV dug deep with his axe to mine a golden seam of blues originals and covers around which he wraps his loose, open-handed and unique style of guitar play to thrill and satisfy tonight’s aficionado’s of hip-swinging rhythm ‘n’ blues.
Cool lounge lizard instrumentals also crawl through tonight’s set-list with a three-piece horn section blowing copper-bottomed notes from Comin’ and Goin’ straight on all the way through to Hold It.
Knowing just how to communicate the blues to the listener, Vaughan nails Clarence ‘Gatemouth’ Brown’s Dirty Work At The Crossroads and Lefty Frizzell’s No One To Talk To But The Blues with his vocal holler and deadly guitar licks.
Seemingly brimful with fun and happiness, Vaughan’s demeanour is reflected in a slug of good time songs such as Roll, Roll, Roll, Just A Little Bit and Hey Baby. Yet, its the emotive and passionate interplay between Vaughan and the suave Hammond B3 organ play of Mike Flanigin which steals the show again and again throughout an evening of top draw musicianship by all players.
Dedicating Texas Flood to his little brother Stevie Ray, there was a moment when a dropping pin would have sounded like an almighty kick from a big bass drum as the band whipped up a tornado of sound. And a twang-tastic version of The Vaughan Brothers White Boots reminded of the only but fabulous album Jimmie and Stevie Ray recorded together.
Touring musicians of Vaughan’s vintage who get low down into the grease of the blues, as his fellow Texan Billy F Gibbons often says, are becoming a rarity and this is exactly what Vaughan does as he nails lick after lick on his Fender Strat.
Aptly closing a night of first-class buzzing blues with Mamma Jamma and Thunderbird, Jimmie Vaughan is enhancing his own legacy by keeping the blues of others and himself very much alive.
Words: Paul Davies Photo: Gage Skidmore