Matt Schofield
Matt Schofield

After recent concerts from Aynsley Lister and Martin Taylor, Lichfield Arts bought a third guitar virtuoso to play at the Guildhall in the shape of Matt Schofield.

The acclaimed musician, and singer played with his powerful band of drummer Kevin Hayes and Hammond Organ player Johnny Henderson, who also provided the group’s muscular bass sounds.

They played songs from all of their albums, ranging from 2005’s Siftin thru ashes , 2007’s Ear to the Ground, with much of the concert’s material coming from their most recent album, Heads, Tails and Aces.

Powerfully delivered, dextrous guitar solos mixed well with Schofield’s vocals, and the drumming of Kevin Hayes was sensitive to every note played, although it would have been good to have heard more from the award-winning Johnny Henderson, who’s playing mixed the sounds of Jimmy Smith with modern techhology.

Although known primarily for his abilities as a Blues player, other elements also formed part of Schofield’s sound, with elements taken from a wide range of musicians, from Robben Ford and John Scofield, through to Stevie Ray and Jimmie Vaughan, Albert Collins, Eric Clapton, and funk bands such as The Meters, and The Average White Band.

Songs played during the concert ranged from Ear to the Ground, the slower songs Livewire  and Lay it Down to the blues funk workout that was Black Cat Moan featuring musical quotes from a variety of sources, from Miles Davies, to the signature riff of the Beatles’s Daytripper.

The sell out audience responded well to every song, wanting two encores, but only one was forthcoming with What I Wanna Hear fitting the bill very well.