Saturday, September 27, 2014

don't call no ambulance!...Selwyn Birchwood at Legends!

don't call no ambulance!….
Selwyn Birchwood was jamming so hard that he took off his shoes at Legends last night!….
He took off his white shoes... and got right to, with his four piece power band of Baritone sax, bass, drums and guitar.
You could tell he was happy to be in Chicago… 
up in Legends making the good times roll!
The last time The Selwyn Birchwood band was in Chicago, they were blazing  at the Chicago Blues Festival 2014. 

Selwyn Birchwood is a rising young Bluesman from Florida. He is the winner of the 2013  International Blues Challenge and recently signed to the Chicago Blues label, Alligator Records in 2014. 
He is young man with an old man's voice! 
He has a strong command of the traditional blues …but with a change of guitar…he can change his sound in a heartbeat.from the flavor of 'Blues from back porch' or 'Down in the Bayou' to a 'Heavy Metal Funk Blues'that ROCKS out! whew! 
Birchwood is highly skilled on guitar and lap steel instruments and his voice sounds like an 'old soul'.
He had several guitars on stage and he played each one with a different approach.  ♫♪♪♫•*¨*•.¸¸¸.•*¨*•♫♪♪♫
One moment  he was strumming and singing some Blues from a back porch right 'thar …or some Bayou lament about some woman.. doing him wrong... and then... next thang you know… he  dun picked up his  'electrified' slide guitar and he was going in hard on a Heavy Metal Funk with a  hint of Hip Hop.. solo on an original song about the violence and the times…called Tell Me Why.

6 seconds of  Birchwood funk... 
before I found out you can't audiotape at the club! Oops!
And it wasn't just him…the doggone band was just killer… It is a true power band with just four pieces…but WHAT they did with the sound of those four pieces was awesome.…'Minded me of Jimi's Band of Gypsies for a minute.. They  are Seasoned players who know how the Blues should be... 

First, the Baritone Sax man, Regi Oliver was playing chords and harmonies on his sax. 
I heard CHORDS coming out of his horn! 
And it was amazing!… After the performance, he spoke about some of his  musical magic …that made that impossible sound possible. 

The roots of Oliver's harmonic layers of a big Baritone sax sound are enhanced by a few magical foot pedals like a harmonizer and a looper…. plus a few mo' gizmos that have him sounding  a like Baritone Sax2 (squared)!

The bass player, Donald Huff Wright has a sound like  rumbling Blues Thunder…too serious in a good way!
and Curtis Nutall (is from CHI-Town! y'all,  CHICAGO!) was so disciplined with his dynamics, colors and nuances…that you could  hear 'erethang!
Back in the day, Curtis and I played in a Jazz group…many nights at the Taste Zodiac Room in Chicago… He has been touring for many years now and it was great to see him  in town  with this great band! 
You could hear the vocals,the sax, the bass,the drums and the guitar perfectly weaving together a serious mixture of 'ole time story telling Blueswith new colors of urban energy… and sprinkles of Hip hop and Metal... played by some powerful players. 
Selwyn Birchwood was showcasing songs  from his CD (which was available for sale), titled, 
don't call no ambulance…. On Alligator Records.
Bruce Iglauer, founder and President of Alligator Records was in the audience was enjoying the show.
Some of the songs from the performance and from the album just stuck in my head…like:
'Queen of Hearts' had us rocking!…'The River Turned Red', 'Addicted,' and a song called "Anyway you look at it,they still call it the Blues"..
The audience was loving it at the Standing Room Only  performance at Legends. Birchwood  came out in the audience..invited us to dance and….folks jumped up and started dancing'!! 
The music was so funky.. my musical sister, Tiona started dancing! 

They were rocking so hard, I pulled out my melodica and played along for a song!

Stay tuned 'cause Selwyn Birchwood is on the rise!.
He is  currently on tour.For tour dates and videos on this amazing young Bluesman go to:
He  might not need no ambulance… but the way they were playing… I thought we were gon' have to call 911…cause the music was on fire!
AA 9262014 
Written by Aki Antonia c2014
All photos by Aki Antoniac 2014
All Rights Reserved
After the SHOW: 

Back in the day,  Drummer, Curtis Nutall and I played in a Jazz group…many nights at the Taste Zodiac Room in Chicago… He has been touring for many years now and it was great to see him in town with this great band!
He calls me his one of his music 'teachers' from the time that we played with a group…and reminded me of  few lessons that we all learned in that band about the power of great musicianship..
Drummer,Curtis Nutall 
and a longtime musician buddy, Mr. Wooten from the 'Chi.
 Alligator Record's Bruce Iglauer  talks with  some international Blues fans.
A shout out  and Thanks! to Terri and Matt, who generously shared their seats at the SRO  performance at Legend's.
 Small world: While talking to drummer, Curtis Nutall, I got a phone call from my ♥.. who is touring in Russia..
and they know each other..from  playing music in Chicago..
so they got a chance to chat and catch up!
Flaustist,Tiona says "What a amazing performance!".
Aki Antonia at Legends…. 25 Years of Great Blues Music!
"Just like being at the original CHECKERBOARD!" 
Thanks Buddy Guy!!

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