It is quite refreshing, especially in the current music world, to hear records made by music artists that do not stick to a particular type of labeling, genre wise, but they rather prefer to let the music flow naturally, in a very organic and healthy free form style, where improvisation becomes a keyword to unleash freedom of expression and an artist musicianship at its very best.
In live performances, especially, the aforementioned aspect becomes even more relevant, because it speaks even more about not only the depth and quality of individual musicianship, but also about perfect interplay between band members, a key factor that it is not always easy to master, during a live show.
Somebody that really knows how to prepare and put together a live performance, where individual skills, band members' spotless interplay, arrangements and vocal delivery shine all together in perfect harmony and sync, is American guitarist and singer/songwriter Doug Deming and his collective The Jewel Tones, through their brand new release called Groovin' At Groove Now!, recorded live in Basel, Switzerland.
Historically created as a quartet, then reduced to a trio, with original band members Doug Deming on vocals and guitar and Andrew Gohman on upright and Fender bass, plus their latest addition to the trio Zack Pomerleau on drums and harmonica, the Powerhouse Blues and Jazz trio was invited to Switzerland a little while ago to perform for the Groove Now! concert series, where they were also joined on stage by veteran keyboard player Bill Heid and Terry Hanek and Sax Gordon on saxophone.
The outcome of that concert is truly breathtaking for any music lover. Thanks to their fabulous blend of Swing, Blues, Jazz and Boogie, Deming & The Jewel Tones gifted the Swiss audience with an irresistible performance that screamed class, elegance and talent on each and every song performed on the night.
Comprising 8 originals plus three covers (Fats Domino's I'm Ready, Willie Dixon and Little Walter's Oh Baby and Hank Penny's Bloodshot Eyes, the latter one of the most successful songs of Bluesman Wynonie Harris), Groovin' At Groove Now! combines all those elements that makes an excellent live show to become a lifetime performance.
Deming is, most certainly, one of the most talented and successful Bluesmen coming from Detroit, Michigan in the last 3 decades, together with fellow artists like Eliza Neals, among others. The Florida-based singer/songwriter and guitarist has received numerous accolades, in recent years, thanks to his indisputable talent, as also shown in recent reports following the release of Deming & The Jewel Tones' latest studio album, the 2018 record called Complicated Mess. On this live recording, Deming confirmed once again the depth and quality of his vocal strength, especially on tracks like Put It Down, Every Night When I Get Home and An Eye For An Eye, whilst his strong and powerful guitar playing was beautifully scattered around this remarkable live album.
Obviously, the reasons behind the triumph of this live album don't rely solely on Doug Deming's talent and musicianship. Every single band member showed such outstanding musicianship, from the newest member of The Jewel Tones, Zack Pomerleau, who delivered an authentic masterclass on drums and harmonica to Andrew Gohman, a true and recognized force of nature, when it comes to bass playing.
The Special Guests too, on the night, played a significant part on the success of this live recording. Gordon and Hanek on saxophone were absolutely brilliant, especially on tunes such as Bloodshot Eyes and Whisper, in particular, where Bill Heid, one of the most talented keyboardist around, displayed his incredible talent in its full beauty on all the album's tracks, particularly on songs like the irresistible instrumental that opens the album and called East Side Hop and No Sense, among many others.
Groovin' At Groove Now! is what a live album should sound like all the time; sonically organic and without any studio manipulation or adjustment. Highly entertaining, exquisitely played and sang, full of melody, swagger and positive vibes. One of the best live albums of the year to date.
Groovin' At Groove Now! is out now and it can be purchased via Amazon.