Thursday, 7 November 2013

One of the problems of working as a musician... actually getting to see a gig yourself.

Working most evenings means it's difficult to get out and see other bands yourself - but as I blogged last week, two tickets to Billy Ocean fell in to my lap. The only reason I could get to gig was that it was half term, there were no lessons or rehearsals to cancel.

Serendipitous indeed. And what a night it was.

Billy Ocean is (although after last week - that's now 'was') one of those acts that I would have caught if he was on a festival bill, out of curiosity and for a bit of a singalong in the sunshine. A fan of the 70's northern soul tracks more than his 80's songs I wasn't sure what to expect.

I was pleasantly surprised to find a man with a voice like the side of a house, a dude of a bass/synth player and much love bouncing between stage & stalls. I'd not experienced anything like that amount of  reciprocated goodwill since I last saw Stevie Wonder live.

Highlights of the set for me were 'Red Light Spells Danger' and a cover of 'A Change is Gonna Come'. The latter stopped everyone in their tracks, with this incredible vocal performance full of history and hope lifting above a paired down band arrangement. After hearing this I truly believe Oceans' voice is improving with age.

I have been entirely won over, and will seek out future Billy Ocean gigs rather than letting them find me. I suggest you do the same.