#168: Hello ... Hello ... my old friends ... It's great to see you once again! It was my great pleasure to be among the audience last night [Saturday 4th December] with friends at the Whitmore Reans Conservative Club in Wolverhampton, England to witness the latest of those rare events which is a Wheels Of Fire gig. On a night when most of the nations attention was focused on The X Factor and most of the attention in Wolverhampton was seemingly on whether yet another manufactured boy band will play a 'gig' in one of their members home town, the real and true business of talented and professional musicians coming together like hand and glove to produce a memorable and entertaining performance was happening right under their noses.
Quite simply, for those seeking an introduction into classic R 'n' B and for those of us who appreciate the great sound and construction of songs by The Beatles [the inspiration for ELO], Cream, Free, Peter Green, Jimi Hendrix et al, last nights Wheels Of Fire concert was like honey melting in the mouth. The quartet of Brian Badhams on bass guitar, Clive Bunker on drums/percussion, Mark Stanway and our very own Phil Bates on lead/rhythm guitar and vocals were - to this writer - stunning. I absolutely love their funked up version of "Daytripper"! It is hard to pick out highlights when the standard was so very high. Folks ... you missed out hearing the sublime "While My Guitar Gently Weeps", "Oh Well", "Wishing Well" and "Layla" and the rest of the set. There are connections here for the fans of The Beatles and ELO to enjoy in particular. My friends and fellow attendees Andy and Jonathan were mightily impressed with what they saw and heard last night.
It was nice to touch base with Mark Stanway - whom I shall be interviewing for ELO Beatles Forever [ELOBF] in the near future. It was also great to chat with Phil after the gig on many and various subject matter. All in all, Yours Truly KJS thinks that this was one of the best gigs I have attended in respect of the musicianship and tightness of a given band. Don't miss out on the opportunity to support Wheels Of Fire lest you will miss out on the heartbeat of True Blues.
ELO Beatles Forever [ELOBF] recommends Wheels Of Fire to those enlightened folks who enjoy the music of ELO, Jeff Lynne, Roy Wood, The Move, The Idle Race, 'Brum Beat', The Beatles and related artistes.
Until next "Time" in the ELO [and related] Universe ... KJS ... 05-Dec-2010