- Published: Thursday, 29 October 2015 14:02
The one and only.....
Hailing from Canvey Island, Essex, they are best known for early singles like "Back in the Night" and "Roxette". Although their most commercially productive years were the early to mid 1970s, they continue to tour and record to this day. The group's original distinctively British R&B sound was centred on Wilko Johnson's choppy guitar style. Along with Johnson, the original band line-up included singer Lee Brilleaux and the rhythm section of John B. Sparks, known as "Sparko" on bass guitar and John Martin, known as "The Big Figure", on drums. Like many pub rock acts, Dr. Feelgood were known primarily for their high energy live performances, although studio albums like Down by the Jetty (1974) and Malpractice (1975) were also popular. Their breakthrough 1976 live album, Stupidity, reached number one in the UK Albums Chart (their only chart-topper). But after the follow-up Sneakin' Suspicion, Johnson left the group due to perceived conflicts with Lee Brilleaux. He was replaced by John 'Gypie' Mayo. With Mayo, the band was never as popular as with Johnson, but still enjoyed their only Top Ten hit single in 1979, with "Milk and Alcohol".
Since releasing their first single Roxette in 1974, Dr Feelgood proved they have a back catalogue to stand the test of time. Members of the audience young enough to know the music only through their parents and even grandparents got the chance to celebrate with the fans who were wild enough to be there first time around.
THE BLIND DEAD McJONES BAND
Blind Dead McJones was never a fan of being in the spotlight, no number 1 singles, cheesy videos or appearances on celebrity cooking programmes. A true Bluesman in every sense of the word, living a life on the road shrouded in mystery. Some say he died years ago in an agriculture related accident, some say he is part of the keyzer soze family and some say he now makes Halloween costumes for dogs. One thing we know for sure is he is responsible for bringing together the blues rock behemoth that is The Blind Dead McJones Band.
Back in 2008 McJones was a lost and tortured soul, wandering the earth just like Kane in Kung Fu. Battling with his demons and struggling to keep going through the Hell that is the music business. All he needed was a friendly face, a pack of smokes and something to help him once again shake the earth to its very core, bring grown men to tears, turn sophisticated women once again into sreaming schoolgirls, and well and truly cement his place alongside the Gods.
He found all this and more when he met…
Ben “Buddy” Slack – Andy “The Cake” Johnson – Steve “Wee-Man” Nixon
“The Boys” are three of the finest young musicians in their price range. Nobody knows exactly why McJones decided to switch from working with battle hardened top of the line professional musicians to these three. Maybe it was their youthful enthusiasm, their quirky sense of humour, their undying love of the music and performing, the raw magnetism of Ben’s beard, most likely he was just a bit strapped for cash. Whatever his reasons were he took the boy’s under his wing like a goddamn chicken and educated them in his ways, raised them as his own and turned them into the best backing band he could afford.
The Story doesn’t end there though.
The debut performance of The Blind Dead McJones Band came around and you’d never guess what happened! The great Blind Dead McJones failed to show! This left the Boy’s in what could be classed as a “tricky situation”, what’s a backing band to do with no one to back? The Boy’s decided to simply play and have some fun. Guitarist Ben “Buddy” Slack donned his best McJones vocal impression and they winged a performance to a mediocre reaction from a confused crowd.
This is how our tale has continued over the years with McJones absence being one of the most consistent elements of The Blind Dead McJones Band. The Boy’s have embraced this with open arms and relished the opportunity to develop themselves as a 3 piece band. They’ve taken the great blues lessons learnt from McJones and infusing them with their other influences and quirky sense of humour to create their own original sound.
McJones seems happy with the arrangement as well, acting as a silent partner in the bands development. Advising the boys on all things blues and still making the occasional cameo appearance.
Halloween fancy dress and make up optional.
TICKET ONLY.... on sale from February 11th. Entry £16.
Available from Arden Rd Social Club, online and Halifax outlets as yet to be arranged.
Doors 7.00pm, first band on stage 8pm sharp.
Late bar serving a selection of real ales, lagers, fine wines and spirits.
Pie-Eck artisan pies, peas and gravy available at this event.
Plenty of free off-road car parking.