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I started a quest to find terrific blues music and incredible musicianship when I was just a little kid. I also have a tremendous appreciation of fine musical instruments and equipment. One of my greatest joys all of my life was sharing my finds with my friends. I'm now publishing my journey. I hope that you come along!

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Sunday, January 6, 2013

Loomis Concert Is A Blast!! Rhythm Room Phoenix January 5, 2013

What gets a true pro football fanatic away from his big screen TV when the NFL Playoffs are on... almost nothing! Well, tonight Hamilton Loomis Band made their debut in Phoenix and I chose his concert set and put the DVR on record to catch the football game. I have been wanting to see this guy for a long time. (Long time friend and sometime contributor Stilladog from Westminster MD. turned me on to Loomis a number of years back but our paths had never crossed.) Excellent decision!!! The Hamilton Loomis Band may put on one of the best shows on the road today. Native Texan Hamilton Loomis is not only a great song writer but an exceptional performer. This is my first opportunity to see Loomis live and in person and I can tell you every single person at the Rhythm Room in Phoenix, Arizona tonight was blown away by the show. Loomis is literally a one man blues funk machine with an incredible voice, terrific guitar skills and a super harmonica sound but he is full of energy and his enthusiasm is contagious. Not enough to have a terrific performer leading the band but Loomis surrounds himself with three musicians who would be standouts in any band. Sax player Fabian Hernandez was absolutely incredible tonight sounding more like a band leader than a backing player. He had beautiful tone and massive chops. He also fills in on keys and backing vocals. New to the band is Armando Aussenac on drums (and vocals) and he is first rate with impeccable taste for texture. Kent Beatty holds down the bass slot (and vocals) playing lead lines under the band while keeping the bottom tight and funky. Each of the players would be a standout in any band but together this is an incredibly talented foursome. One thing that a musician notices about a band like this is each members strengths. These guys are just plain great! Each member shines while playing as a group. Playing a solo for any of these guys is icing to highlight their individual talents but they shine individually as a part of the show. I don't take written notes at a concert so I can't tell you the set list but I can tell you that the band opened with a great funky instrumental with lots of sax. The nearly 2 hour concert included songs from throughout Loomis' career such as What It Is and No No No and at least 4 or more songs from a soon to be released CD (March 2013). A few of these tracks had a bit of a rockier feel than what I am accustomed to from Loomis in his funky style and also including tracks with a soul/R&B flavor really highlighting Loomis' great voice. One of the highlights of the show was Loomis in his trademark white boots walking from chair to chair (people were clearing a path of seats) and eventually onto the bar playing guitar on Johnny Guitar Waston's Bow Wow. This track was morphed into a "rock and roll" track but back to the funky blues when Loomis concluded on the stage. I've been at a lot of concerts where the crowd was hoping that the band would continue but this crowd really wanted more! I mean it was over in an instant! A sign of a truly great show. i spoke briefly with Loomis after the show and he is not only a great performer but a genuinely nice guy. Ask me why he doesn't come to your town. My guess is because there are very few bands that are willing to go on after him! I've seen one of those concerts before and for the big name wasn't pretty. The Hamilton Loomis Band put on a truly terrific show and if he is near your town and you miss it... YOU HAVE MISSED THE BOAT!!!!

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