Laurence Jones at Beaver Wood

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Review and Photos By Ken Jackson

Arriving early at the Beaverwood Club in Chislehurst, I’m greeted by the familiar faces of Martin and Ross Davey at the sound desk, who’ve been diligently setting up since late afternoon. Anticipation fills the air as I settle in for what promises to be an electrifying night of music. Jim Kirkpatrick was billed to be supporting Laurence Jones this evening, but as he was feeling unwell he has had to pull out at short notice. I really enjoy the Beaverwood Club these days, long gone is the clubhouse which was used for live music a few years ago and in its place is a large modern warm space, with an excellent bar, It is part canopy and part solid and it works well. They also have live music 2 or 3 times a week.

Tonight I am here to see Laurence Jones and his Band, I have been a fan of L J for the last decade and have seen him at various venues around the country. Tonight I am here to watch him feature songs from his latest album “Bad Luck and the Blues “ and I can see from his set list that songs from the new album feature heavily in it. L J is on a UK tour and for the first of these shows, L J is headlining before supporting Status Quo for a couple of shows at the end of May. This new album is a compilation of previously written songs That didn’t quite fit the vibe of his previous albums with a few new songs written last Christmas. The Album is on the Marshall Label and recorded in the Marshall studios.

At 9 pm the lights dim and Laurence’s familiar western intro is playing as he takes to the stage, accompanied by the familiar faces of Jack Alexander Timmis playing Bass and Alan Taylor on Drums. As the band take their places I am suddenly aware of how many people are here to see this fabulous band on a Wednesday evening, that’s not surprising though, he is the full package, superb guitarist, great voice and songwriting skills, confident in stage and he looks great too. He is the star of his show.

Kicking off with the familiar “What’s it Gonna Be,” Laurence effortlessly blends old favourites with tracks from his latest album, “Bad Luck and the Blues.” The title track, “Bad Luck and the Blues,” sets the tone for an evening of soulful, rocking blues, with standout performances on tracks like “You’re Not Alone” and “Lost and Broken,” which send shivers down my spine with their raw energy.

The band’s chemistry is undeniable as they delve into blues classics like Leadbelly’s “Good Morning Blues” and BB King’s “Rock Me Baby,” infusing each cover with their unique flair. Alan Taylor’s powerhouse drumming and Jack Timmis’s cool bass lines provide the perfect backdrop for Laurence’s electrifying guitar solos. These types of songs really showcase the L J power Trio at its best, somehow producing a sound where the whole is greater than the parts.

The Blues was very much back in focus for ‘Laurence’s sixth song of the evening “ Don’t you leave me this way “ followed by another favourite of mine in the form of a Leadbelly cover “Good Morning Blues” “Thunder in the Sky “ was another stand out track for me, it’s not on his latest album but like the “Bad luck and the Blues “ album it was recorded in the Marshall studios and is on the Marshall label. Another cover now with, BB Kings “Rock Me Baby “ given the L J treatment beautifully.

More familiar ground follows with the much loved “ In Too Deep “ Alan Taylor has more than worked up a sweat by now, Jack however looks as cool as when he first walked onto the stage and as for L J he just looks to be having a ball.

Time for some Jimi Hendrix with “Voodoo Chile“ or Child as it’s written on the setlist. L J is a massive fan of Hendrix and the whole band gave their all to this fabulous song with Alan Taylors’ relentless and consistent beat coupled with Jack Timmis’s Bass playing contributing to the harmony and rhythm not only to the Hendrix song but the whole evening performance. The last three songs of this fabulous evening are all from this new album and all deserve to be there, the evening was a testament to the popularity of LJ and his Band as the few people still sitting rose to their feet to pay tribute to a job well done and called for an encore. L J returned to the stage to thunderous applause, finishing his performance with “Stuck in the night

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