Joe Bonamassa is celebrating the British blues rock guitarists who inspired him with five concerts across the UK.
‘Joe Bonamassa In Concert: A Salute To The British Blues Explosion’ will see the musician pay homage to Eric Clapton, Jeff Beck, and Jimmy Page at venues like heritage castles at Hoghton and Newark as well as the Old Royal Naval College in Greenwich; Bonamassa headlines the Greenwich London Music Time Festival on 7 July 2016.
“If it wasn’t for certain British musicians of the early 1960s, the blues may well never have exploded into rock music as we know it today, and indeed may have passed into history,” says Bonamassa of the three guitarists, all former members of The Yardbirds, who each went on to become icons in their own right.
These special shows follow Bonamassa’s three-date March UK tour in support of his new solo studio album, ‘Blues Of Desperation’, due for release on 25 March.
“I want people to hear my evolution as a blues-rock musician, somebody who isn’t resting on accomplishments and who is always pushing forward and thinking about how music can evolve and stay relevant,” says Bonamassa of the album that saw him collaborate with some of Nashville’s top songwriters.
“These are some of the best guys in the business,” the Grammy nominee continues. “Lyrically, you’ll hear the proverbial trains, mountains, valleys and other blues references about heartbreak and loneliness, but there are also some poignant moments about getting away from the stressful, crazy demands of life and losing yourself with your special someone. I think anybody will be able to relate.”
The new songs were recorded over five days at Nashville’s Grand Victor Sound Studios with musicians including Anton Fig and Greg Morrow (drums), Michael Rhodes (bass), Reese Wynans (keyboards), Lee Thornburg, Paulie Cerra, and Mark Douthit (horns), and Mahalia Barnes, Jade McRae and Juanita Tippins (backing vocals). As ever, Kevin Shirley was in the producer’s chair.
Says Bonamassa of the Iron Maiden/Journey/Aerosmith producer who’s worked with him for the past decade: “I can explain our relationship with one word – ‘trust.’ I completely trust in Kevin and his musical promptings. He pushes my musical ability by challenging me to not just rest on my laurels or settle for ‘good.’ He expects more out of the other musicians as well and will not hold back when he sees us falling back into our usual routine.”