A rare night out for me, considering how so much has changed, and my schedule does not give me a lot of time to do much else. But when Jimmie Vaughan and the Tilt-A-Whirl Band is playing walking distance from your house, you'd be a fool not to go to it.
Lately, there's been a lot of complaining about Ticketmaster and the costs of going to shows, but what else is new? I have no need or interest to drop the insane amounts of money to go to those things, and while I realize a lot of folks are generous and respectful enough to pay for certain events, like blues cruises and so forth, it's not my thing.
HMAC is a venue that is working toward bringing bigger acts in, and they turned an upstairs room into a nice little venue. You can do a life hack on going to events through a few simple things. Not to brag but...
My ticket, through EventBrite, plus taxes: $38, give or take a few pennies.
Gas/Parking: Zero. I walked there.
Beverage: $6 for a Heineken 0.0 -- I don't drink, this is as close as I can get to it. Still, that is a bit much...I shudder to think what people were dropping for those things they were downing at the bar and in the venue.
T-Shirt: $25...yeah, so what? So that was pretty much it. They had a few shirts, CDs, a box set, and the fans scarfed 'em up, which is cool.
Now, how about Jimmie:
He came out with the seven-piece ensemble that is the Tilt-A-Whirl Band, including the Texas Horns. A long-running, tight band, according to my old friend Rich they have been together for years, and they showed it.
Blues is the core of the music, but Jimmie (along with keyboardist/singer Mike Flanagan) led the group through his catalog, blues, R&B and soul standards. This sometimes felt more like a revue, as they dipped into a trio project Vaughan did with Flanagan, which became the album Live at C-Boy's (it's damned good), and we heard classics like "Hey Baby" and "The Crawl."
Jimmie surprised us with "White Boots" from the Family Style album he did with Stevie, and then he blew the room away with "Texas Flood." A great version.
Jimmie was engaging, invited people to dance, and seemed completely at ease. His guitar style remains precise, not too flashy, which was the backbone of the Fabulous Thunderbirds, and later in his own work.
The encore was a solo play of the Neville Brothers tune, "Six Strings Down," I think that's the title, and a nice tribute to Stevie. They finished off fast, a show that wasn't too long, not self-indulgent, and an honest and solid program.
I'd say a good time indeed. I did not hang out by the bus afterward; unless I'm on assignment for my radio program or something other, I don't like to do that. Let the serious fans go there and have the face time, it's not a feed.
I think I just wanted to go, enjoy myself and have a little fun, and I did. Thank you, Jimmie and everyone else. The 100 or so of us there definitely dug it.
Now...where have I been? Just so you know, Book 3 of the Sweet Dreams Series is coming soon...very soon. I have had little time to do anything like this of late, and I confess I may not do much more blogging. I also have to work through some issues that I talked about last month, and have not been resolved. They will, eventually, and we'll get on with the important stuff.