THIS week sees three very different blues-rooted acts feature in the column, the first is on Wednesday at the Diamond, Sutton In Ashfield, which is showcasing Irish blues rockers the Pat McManus Band supported by Black Wednesday.
Pat's career reads like a who's who of popular music. He was a founder member of hard rock 80s/90s band, Mamas Boys, who toured the world with the likes of Bon Jovi, Black Sabbath, Thin Lizzy and Sting. Pat is considered one of Ireland's top five guitarists and at the Diamond he'll be demonstrating just why.
Also on Wednesday, the Maze, Mansfield Road, offers a performance by Sam Baker from Austin, Texas. Brought up on blues heroes like Brownie McGhee, Sonny Terry and Lightnin Hopkins, Sam has blended his roots into other genres and mixed them around his story telling lyrics to form songs that are uniquely his own.
Sam's was a life and career that nearly didn't happen. In 1986, he was involved in a terrorist bomb attack on a train in Peru. The people next to him were killed outright and Sam sustained life-threatening multiple injuries, including brain injury and severe damage to his left hand. Yet he has learned to play the guitar again, left handed rather than right now and his songwriting reflects his profound but positive view of life.
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Tantrum makes a second attempt to perform at Millers Snooker Club, Kirkby In Ashfield, on Thursday after their aborted attempt due to the weather in February. Tantrum are a three-piece band originating in Manchester and consisting of Jamie Walker, guitar and vocals, Torsten Christensen on bass and Luke Paget on drums. They have been together for ten years and have played all the UK's major festivals.
In the last few years they have been spending half of their year in California, where they are known as The Feud and then play heavy metal with hip hop styling but at heart they are blues and their UK gigs give them the chance to play the music they originally cut their teeth on.