First gig of the twenty-twelve! Can I get a “whoop, whoop”! The honour fell to Mamas Gun, who ever since discovering them by accident supporting Laura Izibor have been one of my favourite bands. Big in Asia, yet relatively undiscovered at home, Mamas Gun’s vibrant soul is always a touch more necessary when heard live.
With two albums to their name now, Mamas Gun can put together a more fulfilling show. From the pleasant mystery of The Art, Andy’s vocal piercing through the mumbles, to the paper plane filled Rocket To The Moon, the show had a celebratory and homely vibe for some reason. Like they were having fun with a room (a very big room mind you) full of friends.
The best bit of this show though was a lovely surprise, first spotted by my girlfriend as she glanced at the table behind us during dinner, “is that…?” she said pointing inconspicuously and kicking my foot as I turned to look. “Don’t look, it can’t be her” she continued. Then about three quarters of the way through the gig, she, stood up and dusted herself down. …
…it was indeed Beverley Knight, there to sing the best song from the second album (and latest Mamas Gun single) Only One. It was a surprise and a moment to treasure. Beverley sung her little heart out as she and Andy traded lines on a sumptuous duet.
The only thing missing from this gig now was my favourite Mamas Gun song, Pots of Gold… but alas that moment never came (I think it has been cut from the set list these days).
And far too soon it was over, the first gig of the year, featuring a guest spot from Britain’s foremost soul legend. Not sure it can get much better. I left the Jazz cafe with a spring in my step, a song in my heart and a very embarrassed look on my face after asking Bev for a photo a getting a teeny bit star struck.
If all the gigs this year are half as good, twenty-twelve will be a very good year!