Joe Bonamassa - Roy Thomson Hall, November 17th, 2012 - Toronto

Joe Bonamassa.jpeg

Submitted by Tracey Savein

Say it ain't so, Joe...was my first thought the instant that last note was played at Roy Thomson Hall this November 17th night in Toronto... and I'm sure I wasn't the only one as Joe Bonamassa's blistering rendition of ZZ Top's "Just Got Paid", playfully riddled with Zeppelin licks, brought the house down AND blew the roof off all at once. Up or down, whichever way you chose to look, it was one hot night of stellar blues and crafty musicianship.

Decked out in dark suit and shades, with slicked back hair and matching purple kicks and tie, Joe looked the consummate bluesman backed that up while playing his rainbow of guitars.

Starting off the night with a beautiful solo acoustic mini set, intermitantly accompanied by Tal Bergman on percussions, Joe's soulful cover of Bad Company's "Seagull" was a pleasant and well received surprise.

Then came the electric blues mega set, cue band. Veteran aces Carmine Rojas (bass), Rick Melick (keyboards), and returning to the stage, Tal Bergman (drums) were individually like a groove and rhythm seminar, each showing us their proverbial prowess, but add those three seasoned pieces to Joe virtuoso, and you have one powerhouse musical pie.

Tunes like Slow Train, Dust Bowl, The Ballad of John Henry, Look Over Yonders Wall, Blues Deluxe, Young Man Blues, Mountain Time and Sloe Gin, and winding in a sweet and tasty version of Chuck Berry's Wee Wee Hours, he told us stories dappled with the sound of his crisp, melodic voice, familiar in its resonance, real in its pureness.

Joe Bonamassa IS the real deal and is clearly cementing himself alongside his iconic rock and blues heroes as one of them. But for now, this night is over...say it ain't so...