Martin Barre Band

 

The Road Less Traveled Tour
Katharine Hepburn Cultural Arts Center
October 7, 2018

 

The Martin Barre Band returned to the Katharine Hepburn Cultural Arts Center on October 7th to entertain an enthusiastic crowd. Having seen this band before and enjoying every moment of the concert it was a given that we were at The Kate to see them again. Martin said he also enjoys being at that particular venue and it’s a comfortable place for him and the band.
This is The Road Less Traveled Tour to coincide with the release of his newest album of the same name. This night they performed “Lone Wolf” and “(This is) My Driving Song” a couple of cuts off the new release due out October 28th. If the whole album is as good as these two he has solidified the fact that he continues to release new and relevant music.
In 2016 when I last saw Martin perform the Back To Steel album had just been released. The band was getting into their rhythm and playing cuts off that release. This time around they have been playing together for some time now, at least Barre, Crisp and Thomson have been. New to the line-up was Darby Todd on drums and he’s an excellent addition to the group.
Dan Crisp has totally come into his voice and delivered a strong performance. He not only has great vocals but also does a fantastic job on guitar. He seems to have his own style evolving is very engaging, especially when he’s singing a blues song.
Barre was excellent as usual on the guitar and he also surprised the audience at The Kate when he scrambled down the steps from the stage during one song and played to the audience in front. He then took a seat in the front row and played back toward the rest of the band on stage, even giving bass player Alan Thomson the same look I am sure he sees from fans in the audience. It was a great moment and the crowd thoroughly enjoyed it.
The band had traveled through the night to get to The Kate after performing a show in Annapolis, Maryland. Barre said they were running on 8 hours sleep between all of them. If this is how they go on little sleep they need to be sleep deprived and punchy all the time because the entire band once again wowed the audience with a fantastic and energetic performance. Each song better than the last. They built the audience up to a crescendo and took them over the top with the encore of “Aqualung” and “Locomotive Breath.”
They always surpass the last show and never dissapoint. I must say this was my favorite concert of year and I have been to quite a few. This show is a must see on the list of bands to catch and if you get the chance to see them by all means do so. We can not recommend them enough and are awaiting their next tour.
The Stand Up America Celebrate 50 years of Jethro Tull Tour in April and May, 2019 and is in addition to the regular Martin Barre Band tour dates.

 

www.martinbarre.com
Review by Donna Erichsen
Photos by George Bekris
Setlist:
Steel Monkey
Hymn 43
Sea Lion
Lone Wolf
Back to the Family
Love Story
This is My Driving Song
For a Thousand Mothers
Nothing to Say
Nothing Is Easy
Set 2:
Hunting Girl
My Sunday Feeling
I Want You (She’s So Heavy) (The Beatles cover)
Minstrel in the Gallery
A New Day Yesterday
Teacher
Encore
Aqualung
Locomotive Breath

Jessie Colin Young Band – Katharine Hepburn Cultural Arts Center – August 2, 2018

Jesse Colin Young

 Katharine Hepburn Cultural Arts Center
August 2, 2018

Jesse Colin Young and his band of young performers including his son gave the Katharine Hepburn Cultural Arts Center aka “The Kate” audience a wonderful performance. The sold out theater was welcoming of the group and the beautifully intimate venue with only 250 seats lends itself to a warm interaction of audience and performers.
Young is one of those artists from the 60’s era of music who had two choices. One is to go out and tour resting on the laurels of well known often performed hits that many audiences come to expect. The second option, which is the one Young has chosen, is to surround yourself with a young band with fresh ideas and expectations. When that option is chosen the opportunities for new sounds and updated concerts are endless.
He chose an option allowing him to get creative and write new songs that include the sounds of his eight member band. The songs he now pens include compositions with music for the regular guitar, bass and acoustic guitar along with saxophone and backup singers. His songs now have a wider range and vision. An added bonus is that his voice sounds better than ever and he hit the highest hardest to reach notes with ease and clarity and a new breath of life.
There are those in the audience who will always request and expect the older standards that Young is known for in his past. He obliges them with a few of those but doesn’t fill the entire show with older songs. He showcases his new songs to a receptive audience and judging by the reaction of the crowd he is successful at this arrangement.
The concert is separated into two acts. The first act was Young onstage solo with an acoustic guitar for five songs. After a short intermission he returns with the full band and they pump up the tempo and the sound.
His band consists of Jesse Colin Young – Lead Vocals and Acoustic Guitar, Virginia Garcia Alves – Backup Vocals, Sally Stempler – Backup Vocals, Aleif Hamdan – Lead Guitar, Jack Sheehan – Saxophone, Tristan Young – Bass, Jenn Hwan Wong – Keyboard and Donnie Hogue – Drums.
They have a  new coming out on BMG on November 6th and it’s called DREAMERS. It was recorded in Nashville TN in March at Sound Emporium Studio A and Oceanway Studios and produced by Colin Linden. The release will be on election day of all days. Kind of an ironic date considering he was first singing and playing during the turbulent times of the Vietnam War with all of the protests and political involvement by the young men and women. Many of those of that age who his audience in the 60’s still are today. But, politics are ever present and times they are always changing and it happens the release comes at a time when there is another intense focus on government and politics. Coincidence? Planned that way? Who knows but it memorable day for an album release nonetheless.
The Jessie Colin Young Band has been performing together for a couple of years now and what started out as a fledgeling group joining the more experienced Young has now gotten their feet firmly on the ground. They put on a solid and very entertaining show and their abilities shined clearly in every song. Though Young is the leader of the band the entire ensemble has gained so much confidence since I last saw them and it clearly shows. I would see this band again without hesitation. If you get the chance do take in Jessie Colin Young live do so you will be happy you did.
http://www.jessecolinyoung.com
Review by Donna Erichsen
Photos by George Bekris
JCY Solo Setlist:
Sugarbabe
Songbird
Four in the Morning
Lyme Life- new song
Sunlight
JCY Band Setlist:
Ridgetop
Ride The Wind
Here Comes The Night – New song
Walk The Talk – New song
Cast A Stone – New song
What’s Goin’ On/Mercy Me
For My Sisters – New song
Before You Came
Sanctuary
Darkness, Darkness
Lightshine
Get Together

ENCORE-

T-Bone Shuffle

Jesse Colin Young

Jesse Colin Young

The Katharine Hepburn Cultural Arts Center

Feb. 18, 2017

The Jesse Colin Young Band performed at the Katharine Hepburn Cultural Arts Center on Saturday, February 18, 2017. It was a two part show. The first set was all acoustic with Young solo on his guitar. The second set was Young accompanied by his band of young talented artists in their 20’s. It’s ironic that they are around the age he was when he was touring in the Youngbloods.

Jesse Colin Young’s career began on the east coast in 1964 but really took off when he became one of the founding members of the Youngbloods in 1967, during the summer of love in California. Their best known hit is the iconic and still well loved song “Get Together” which was a worldwide top ten hit.
“Get Together” has become one of the anthems of a generation that proclaimed peace, love and harmony and would see us all through the turmoil of the Vietnam war era. It is such a classic that no Jesse Colin Young article or concert would feel be complete without the song. It’s been included in numerous movies throughout the years.

After the Youngbloods, Young continued with his own successful career and solo albums. He recorded in his studio in Marin, California and started his own Ridgetop Record label until a fire ravaged his home and property in 1995. He then moved his family to Hawaii and began a new life that included writing and producing music in a new studio. He and his wife also started their own coffee plantation 2000 feet up the slope of the 8000 foot Hualalai Mountain Volcano.The organic coffee is called Morning Sun and is sold and shipped worldwide.

Young opened with his well known songs “Songbird” and “Sugar Babe.” Followed by “Four in the Morning,” “Sunlight” and “Desire.” Young told the audience how he had taken a hiatus from touring for 6 years and had not planned on returning to the road until he saw his son and fellow Berklee college students performing at a recital and was blown away by their talent. He then decided to start touring again and invited Aleif Hamdan (electric guitar), Jack Sheehan (saxophone), Donnie Hogue (drums), Jenn Hwan Wong (keyboard), Sally Rose (backup vocals), Virginia Garcia-Alves (backup vocals) and Young’s son Tristan Young (bass) to join him. Their youth and enthusiasm energized his desire to tour again and it’s evident he enjoys their energy onstage.

For the second set Young was joined by the band and they started the set with “Ridgetop.” This was followed by “Sweet Good Times” and “Walk the Talk About Love.” They then sang “Cast a Stone,” which Young wrote following the Boston bombing about the emotions felt during the anxious hours in the aftermath.
The band shows their versatility by changing it up with a mix of blues and soul songs. They played a cover of the Marvin Gaye songs “What’s Goin’ On” and “Mercy, Mercy Me.” The band moved smoothly between the blues, folk and jazz mix of songs. Sally Rose and Virginia Garcia-Alves added beautiful accompaniment to Young’s voice.

 

They performed another of Young’s acclaimed songs “Darkness, Darkness” off the album Elephant Mountain. The song was also an anthem of the 60’s but refers more to the soldiers feelings in Vietnam. Jesse then sang a song he wrote, “For Orlando” after the tragic Orlando, Florida nightclub shooting.

The Katharine Hepburn Cultural Arts Center is gem of a venue in Old Saybrook, CT, an intimate theater holding 250 patrons. It was a sold out concert and all of the patrons were happy to spend an evening with the band judging by the applause for an encore as the performance ended. The band returned to the stage and played a rousing rendition of T-Bone Shuffle.
It was a feel good performance with a legend and his band that everyone thoroughly enjoyed.

Jesse Colin Young Band Members:
Aleif Hamdan – Electric Guitar
Jack Sheehan – Saxophone
Tristan Young – Bass
Donnie Hogue – Drums
Jenn Hwan Wong – Keyboard
Sally Rose – Backup Vocals
Virginia Garcia-Alves – Backup Vocals
Set List
Set 1 : Young Solo
Songbird
Sugar Babe
Four in the Morning
Sunlight
Desire
Set 2 with Jesse Colin Young Band
Ridgetop
Sweet Good Times
Walk the Talk about Love
Cast a Stone
What’s Goin’ On/Mercy, Mercy Me
Lightshine
Statesboro Blues
Right Here, Right Now
Darkness, Darkness
For Orlando
Get Together
Encore
T-Bone Shuffle
Review by Donna Erichsen
Photos by George Bekris

 

 

Martin Barre Interview

Interview with Martin Barre

Sept. 28, 2016

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The Martin Barre Band will be playing the Katharine Hepburn Cultural Arts Theater in Old Saybrook, Connecticut on October 13, 2016.
Martin Barre did a phone interview with New England Rock Review’s Donna Erichsen prior to his scheduled show.
Barre spent 43 years as a guitarist for the legendary English band Jethro Tull before launching into his new career when Jethro Tull called it quits and broke up in 2011. Martin has since formed his own band, The Martin Barre Band, made up a quartet of seasoned artists. It features Martin Barre, Dan Crisp, George Lindsay and Alan Thomson. The Martin Barre Band released the album titled “Back To Steel” in 2015 and they have a new DVD “Live at Daryls” due out for Christmas 2016.
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Question: You have played large arenas with Jethro Tull and the Kate is an intimate venue. Do you prefer larger or smaller venues?
Martin: “I’ve played arenas with Jethro Tull and in small theaters and now I’ve played festivals with the Martin Barre Band. We’ve played theaters, we’ve played clubs. A gig is a gig, and in many ways the smaller the gig the more control you have. The sound is going to be better for everybody with a smaller audience. When you start getting larger the sound varies so much contained within the bigger space. I always look at the audience, if they’re having a great time I know it’s a good place to play and inevitably we get a great reaction”
Question: Do you play this tour with a full band including the female backups on this tour or how many of the band will be with you?
Martin: “It’s a four piece band, but it’s the four guys that are on the Back to Steel album. Maybe next year or at some point we’ll add the girl singers and expand on it for the future. It’s a good question. At the moment the four of us sound pretty good and you get what you hear on the album. We work really well together and with the four people everyone plays with lots of dynamics and lots of power.”
Question: In the years that you’ve been away from Jethro Tull, I know that Ian Anderson has gone on with his own band. Do you miss the camaraderie of being with Ian Anderson and the rest of Jethro Tull. Or, have you taken it in your own direction and enjoy being with your own band?
Martin: “Oh yeah well that’s a difficult area now. In 1969 when we started it was good and you had that connection. I have that now with my band now. We get on really, really well and have that sort of unity. That unity that was with Jetho Tull in the early days diminished as the years went on and people changed in the band. When the lineup changes, although we’re always friends, that spirit disappears. You know that inner glow, that inner connection. I’m glad to have that back again.”
Question: Your wife is from America. Do you spend more of your time in the United States now?
Martin: “We live in England. My wife is from Mississippi. My son lives in Mississippi and we go and visit him a lot. We’re at the moment, last year, this year, next year and 2018 we will spend at least six months of the year touring. My heart is in America and musically my roots are here. It’s where I’ve always been really happy to play. It’s easy here, music is, America loves music and music loves America. It’s a simple formula. I know I live here in spirit. I don’t have a house, I live in hotels but I love things here.
Question: You have a very busy upcoming tour schedule. Is there a particular place or county that you prefer to play in?
Martin: “You know it’s universal. Music is universal as well. Particularly with Jethro Tull there were no boundaries, there were no frontiers. There was really nowhere that was really different. Nowadays it’s a universal love of music and I like being in certain countries because of the culture, the food or the scenery. I have to say that we have been driving through the Adirondacks, through the Catskills and through the Blue (Ridge) Mountains and you know America has the most spectacular scenery in the world. It’s right here in America. It’s a beautiful place. Not many people I think are aware of it. I think many people think of Europe as being beautiful with the mansions and the scenery, but you have it here as well. You can make travel amazing and the highway is kind of what you make it. I try to make it as comfortable and as interesting as possible.”
Question: With the younger generation and the new influences and different types of music that are out there now. Do do you find yourself making changes in your music writing and composing as your going along now?
Martin: “No, I don’t. I don’t because Jethro Tull followed fashion to a degree. We went through an electronics stage in the mid eighties and it was a big mistake. Fashions come and go in music. If you don’t follow it you’ll be in exactly the same place after it’s been and gone. No, I like music and I respect it and I love all styles. I like country, bluegrass, blues, classical music in particular and folk music. I enjoy listening to it and I draw inspiration from it. I don’t copy it, but I know I draw inspiration from it. I certainly won’t change the way I am. I’m not saying that I’m perfect by a huge amount but I have a self belief. I just that I know what I like and I have to stand by that. I stand by the fact that the music I write is the music I love. If people don’t like it I’d be very, very disappointed and if people do like it I’m extremely happy. It’s one hundred percent of my own making, my own volition.
Question: You have been at this for so many years. Do you plan to keep on and see where it takes you or do you plan to slow down and relax a while?
No, no we’re at the beginning of a new career for the Martin Barre Band. We’ve just started and I’m not going to slacken up on it for quite a few years. We are already planning 2018. It’s a big, big year for us and we have some special things in mind for that year. As as long as my health permits we’re in it for the long term.
Question: You have been using more of your own music and compositions and less of Jethro Tull in your performances. On your next album will there be more of your own music?
Martin: “I think there will be that comfortable balance. I don’t want to be known as a band that is famous for playing Jethro Tull music. I want to have our own identity and I want the people in the audience to appreciate the band as individuals. I want to write music and if people to enjoy the music that I write it is a real accomplishment. There will always be that mix, I’ll always understand the historic side of what I’ve done is important for the fans and I would never ignore that. It’s a nice mixture, sometimes we’ll play “Trashing Government Mule” or “Porcupine Tree” or a blues standard. We’re in a position that we can do anything that we want because we’re passionate about doing it. We don’t have any constrictions in our catalogue. We can experiment and I want to do that, I want to keep the audience guessing. I want to keep their interest and I want to keep their enthusiasm as much as I want to keep the band’s enthusiasm.”
Question: Do you plan to bringing in any other artists with you in the future or work in collaboration with other artists?
Martin: “Yes, we’ve got some plans or 2018, a very special tour. With some very, very special guests. It’s a bit early to give details but we have some interest in that from some amazing people.”
Question: In the past Jethro Tull included flute as an instrument. In your latest album that is absent. Do you plan leave that out in the future as well?
Martin: “No, no I don’t, I played flute before I met Ian and I will be playing flute again. But only when musically the situation arises. If I write a piece of music and it would be sound nice with flute then that’s what I’ll do. But, the flute fortunately or unfortunately is very replaceable. We’ve gone to electric guitars more. The flute isn’t a comfortable instrument in a rock environment, although Ian made it famous and did make it work. But I think the proof in the pudding is that there aren’t many bands that feature a flute.”
Question: Does your wife travel with you?
Martin: “Yes she does. We’re expecting our second grandchild in a week so she’s going to fly back in a few days to England for that. But, she runs the business of Martin Barre, whatever that is, with me. Without her I couldn’t do it. She does the administration and it’s a lot of work.”
We will have more from the Martin Barre Band following the show at 7:30pm on Oct 13, 2016 at the Katharine Hepburn Cultural Arts Theater in Old Saybrook, Connecticut.

Richie Furay Acoustic Quartet

Richie Furay

Sept. 30, 2016
The Katharine Hepburn Cultural Arts Center

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Richie Furay and friends entertained an intimate audience at the Katharine Hepburn Cultural Arts Cents, also known as “The Kate”. Richie  helped shape the sound of country rock and folk as we know it today and is known the world over as one of the greats in the early rock scene. A founding member of Buffalo Springfield, Poco, and the Souther,Hillman Furay band, his voice is instantly recognizable.
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Furay gave a wonderful performance on September 30th. He started the evening off letting the audience know this was going to be a relaxed performance. Kind of like a gathering in his living room for a evening with friends. It indeed felt like a big living room as the Kate holds only about 250 patrons. It also was a pared down version of his band. He began the evening by himself. Then as the evening progressed introduced his daughter Jessie Furay Lynch who sang harmony beautifully. Scott Sellen joined in after that and played guitar and banjo. Finishing out the quartet Jack Jeckot joined them on keyboard and harmonica.

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Richie spoke about the influence other artists have had on his career and how they helped in the evolution of his music. He performed Dan Fogelberg’s song “Don’t Lose Heart” accompanied by his daughter Jessie Furay Lynch on harmony.
The informal show was very well performed and it suited the Kate. Being a small venue Furay was able to easily interact with the audience. It was a very enjoyable evening.
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Richie Furay (Lead Vocals and Guitar)
Jessie Furay Lynch (Harmony and Lead Vocals)
Scott Sellen (Lead Guitars, Banjo, Keyboard)
Jack Jeckot (Keyboards, Harmonica, Vocals)
Opening for Richie Furay was the Chris Berardo & The DesBerardos Acoustic Trio.
Chris Berardo, his brother Marc Berardo and Billy Kelly warmed up the crowd. They played a few songs off their “Ignoring All the Warning Signs” album along with the single “Somebody Like Me”.
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Review by Donna Erichsen
Photos by George Bekris

Richie Furay

Richie Furay

The Katharine Hepburn Cultural Arts Center
Mar. 20, 2015
Mar. 20, 2015
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Richie Furay
The first day of spring and the snow is falling. It’s all good. Richie Furay and his band are playing “The Kate”, The Katharine Hepburn Cultural Arts Center and Theater in Old Saybrook, Connecticut.
Richie Furay, a singer, songwriter, and Rock & Roll Hall of Famer who is best known for being a founding member, singer, guitarist and songwriter of Buffalo Springfield in 1967 with Stephen Stills, Neil Young, Bruce Palmer and Dewey Martin. Furay later co-founded the supergroup Poco with Jim Messina and the Souther Hillman Furay Band with Chris Hillman, and J.D. Souther.
He was also just inducted into the Colorado Music Hall of Fame. Now that is a pedigree most would envy.
The Empty Pocket’s out of Chicago warmed up the audience with a great sound that lifts your spirits. A fun band with a sound all their own and are a pleasure to see perform. I will be following their music in the future.
When Richie took the stage it was good to hear his voice again and it’s so distinctly recognizable. He still has the voice he had 40 years ago which is amazing.
The Richie Furay Band treated the audience in the intimate venue of about 250 seats to a stellar night of music at it’s best.
Jessie Furay Lynch, Richie’s Daughter, is expecting and due in May so she was unable to accompany the band for this stop of their tour.
They were joined by Erika Brett from the Empty Pocket’s and her beautiful voice fit like a glove.
Richie, along with Scott Sellen on guitar and banjos, Jack Jeckot on keyboard and Harmonica, Alan Lemke on drums and Aaron Sellen on Bass.
The band took us all along on an entertaining show of past, present and future music played exceptionally well. “For What It’s Worth” which turned into a sing-a-long, “Pickin’ Up The Pieces”, “Good Feelin’ To Know”, “Fallin’ in Love” “Kind Woman” and some of his newer songs
“We Were The Dreamers”, off his just released new album “Hand in Hand” about his time with Poco was a real crowd pleaser. They were indeed legends.
The entire band meshed so well and seamlessly their songs resonated off the walls of the old hall and made the atmosphere both comforting and welcoming. The audience took it all in like a deep breath. An exceptional concert by one of the greats singing some of his anthems of a generation.
Richie Furay is also just a nice guy and it shows in his pure enjoyment of the moment. He was instrumental in the whole Colorado sound so prevalent in the early 70’s. He spoke as if he was talking with a room of old friends about some of his experiences with Neil Young, Steven Stills,Poco and life in general.
If you get a chance to see Richie Furay, do it while he is still touring. It was a such a good feelin’ kind of night and we were all destined to leave with a smile. He said at the start of the show that he wanted us to leave glad that we braved the snow and came out to spend an evening with him. Two hours later we were. What a way to start spring.
Review by Donna Erichsen
Photos by George Bekris