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Lichfield Arts started 2015 as they meant to go on, with a packed room and good live music.
Local favourites The Sleaze Brothers Inc bought their action packed good time rock and roll and blues sound to bear in an evening that featured blues, soul and rock songs played with vigour and energy.
With a full band line up of drums, bass, keyboard, saxophone, two guitars, two backing vocalists, and the full throated vocals of Martin Derry, the band played a set that was full of musical invention, and energy that highlighted the ensemble sound of the group while giving the spotlight to the talented soloists within the band.
The band formed in 1986, and since then have played a number of gigs, in pubs, clubs, and at outdoor festivals, and even in a prison, tightening their sound and style, and including classics from within the soul and rock canon. They have also expanded with new songs and arrangements. During this concert, they played songs by such luminaries as Wilson Pickett, JJ Cale, Bob Dylan, Seasick Steve, Chuck Berry, Randy Newman, Don Williams, Spencer Davies Group, and Status Quo.
Don’t Want No Woman by Magic Sam was a fine opener, before the more familiar Midnight Hour by Wilson Pickett was played. JJ Cale’s Cocaine was a good showcase for guitarist Tim Perks.
Bob Dylan’s Watching the River Flow was delivered at a faster pace than the recorded version, before the newest song of the evening, Seasick Steve’s I Started Out With Nothing (And I’ve Still Got Most Of It Left) was a fine showcase for percussion and harmony vocals.
The second half featured a lot of more upbeat music, and feel-good grooves, that ranged from songs by Chuck Berry (No Particular Place to Go and C’est La Vie) to Randy Newman’s You Can Leave Your Hat On, while Mustang Sally and Gimme Some Lovin’ became singalong favourites for the sizable audience.
The encore included Caroline by Status Quo – delivered here as a swing jazz number – and the old classic soul hit Treat Her Right were well received and showed by the pedigree of The Sleaze Brothers Inc as an ensemble, and the popularity of the songs they chose to play.
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