Well it’s been a few years since I last got the chance to see The Robert Cray Band perform at the Hall For Cornwall and to be honest I never thought I would get the chance to see him again. Thankfully his band returned and this time it was even better than before. Support for the tour came from the impressive Shawn Jones whose guitar-playing and vocals were spot on and fully deserving of his place on the tour. He instantly got the crowd on side by introducing his new guitar that he had been lucky to find in a local charity shop window-display. Being left handed and finding such a great instrument had made his day and you could tell he had fallen in love with his new axe. His short set was well received, although I would have liked to hear a little more it was not to be on this occasion. Before leaving the stage he thanked Robert for bringing him along and told the crowd that he would now be on the merchandise stand until Robert’s set starts.
As the lights went down there was a short announcement telling people not to video the show and asking them to turn of the flashes on their cameras and as it ended the band made their way onto the stage in the darkness. Still in darkness they started to play but thankfully it wasn’t long before the lights came on and people could see the band. Obviously there was Robert Cray on guitar and vocals along with Les Falconer on Drums, Dover Weinberg on keyboards and the ultra chilled Richard Cousins on bass guitar. These guys sounded awesome from the off but the one thing that did surprise me was Robert’s voice. Now most blues singers have a rough gravelly voice but not Robert. His voice sound nearly soulful and that’s singing live as well.
They all seemed to be in high spirits and looked as if they were having a whale of a time playing song after song for a near on sold out venue. As I looked around there was just the odd empty seat and to be honest, this was probably more to do with people watching from elsewhere rather than disturbing everyone to get back to their position. From my front row seat I noticed that Robert used a new plectrum for each song and just dropped them on the floor beside him but it didn’t look like his playing was destroying them that much. A huge applause came after every song and laughter from everyone as Robert joked with the crowd and told the odd short story. It was not only Robert who the crowd were enjoying and this was because the whole band seemed to be on fire. Perhaps it’s like this at every show, but this gig was certainly being enjoyed by everyone present. Unfortunately all things come to an end and after a short encore the band were gone.
As I waited at the front Robert’s guitar tech handed the plectrums that Robert had dropped to a few lucky fans and they went home even happier than the rest.