Joe Bonamassa golden strums fills Blumenthal

Joe Bonamassa golden strums fills Blumenthal

Photographer: Richard Thigpen

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With a career that spans 16 full albums and near three decades, the blues guitar virtuoso Joe Bonamassa ventured into Charlotte last night to entertain. To those unfamiliar with his career let’s do some catch-up: he has such a collection of gear, vintage guitars, and memorabilia it’s been self-dubbed ‘Bona-seum’. The main star of his show is the array of vintage and specialty-built guitars but he prefers to play his famous ’59 Les Paul Gibson on the road. He has hired an ex-secret agent as his security guard to have it be fully protected!

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He’s quite a character if you do any form of research on him. A musical savant of sorts, his first guitar was placed in his small hands at the tender age of four when he first heard Stevie Ray Vaughan and was instantly enamoured by the sounds. By age eight, he opened for B.B. King and by age twelve was full on touring the world. The show has not stopped since.

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Let’s set the scene of last night a bit, shall we?

Joe tours with a full band – backup singers, great light rig – drummer, bassist, backup guitar, saxophone, trumpet, and his vast collection of guitars. He’s an impeccable dresser; a divine suit with his signature sunglasses he wears at night inside, (cue the Corey Hart song —”I wear my sunglasses at night”) he once told GuitarMessenger.com he has different ones for every season and has bought enough to put someone’s kid through college a few times.

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The stage dims while you wait for the band to start sitting at their respective instruments and the dancers slink on stage with a sexy aviance as they shimmy and shake to the beat all night. The lights dim so low it’s like a candle-lit romantic dinner on the town. People hush those next to them to not miss the moment: Joe Bonamassa, guitar virtuoso walks on the stage. The shades reflecting the immense spotlight now on him. He walks to the front of the stage lifts his hand to his ear wanting to hear the crowd and perches his guitar a little on his hip. He waits there until he gets the level of reaction he wants. Then as the small notes swell the lights blast wide open and here comes a night of full blown talent.

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Bonamassa prides himself on not being too much a soloist all the time and thinks it’s important to be a part of the ensemble you are playing with and it shows on the restraint he has during these live performances. Reading around you can see in an unprinted interview he’s said “Even a guy who puts on a ‘guitar show’ has to play rhythm, and has to be fluent in chords and voicings. Also, if you don’t learn how to back off your volume when someone else is soloing, that’s problematic. Rhythm playing is about learning how to blend in with the band, and be part of the ensemble.”

It’s fun to research artists and find they have not only creativity on stage but strong opinions and heart for everyone.

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Cheeky touches about current events pepper his social media accounts.

To the heartfelt dedication:

Bill Paxton Rest In Peace… a great actor who has passed way too soon at 61 years old.

— JOE BONAMASSA (@JBONAMASSA) February 26, 2017

And the realness of our country:

Anyone else starting to get the feeling like our country is partying like it’s 1859? Meanwhile NASA discovers 7 new planets and …crickets

— JOE BONAMASSA (@JBONAMASSA) February 25, 2017

To what is just going on in his life off the stage. The pleasure to all the fans and new fans alike though is seeing him live and experience a guitar solo or two – or a duet with his band members’ guitars screaming sweet nothing at one another.

His discography is for another time so I can have the pleasure of digging through it all one-by-one, singing along, feeling the soul, and anxiously waiting for the return of this epic tour.

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Full gallery can be seen here.

Please see it if you get a chance:

FEB28
Tomorrow 8 PM · 91 guests
Hershey, PA
Interested
MAR2
Pittsburgh, PA
Interested
MAR3
Pittsburgh, PA
Interested
MAR6
Mon 8 PM CST · 28 guests
Peoria, IL
Interested
MAR7
Tue 8 PM · 20 guests
Vero Beach, FL
Interested
MAR9
Thu 8 PM CST · 85 guests
Interested
MAR10
Fri 8 PM CST · 36 guests
Chicago, IL
Interested
MAR11
Sat 8 PM CST · 50 guests
Chicago, IL
Interested
MAR13
Mon 8 PM CDT · 98 guests
Interested
MAR15
Wed 8 PM CDT · 73 guests
Springfield, IL
Interested
MAR17
Fri 8 PM CDT · 23 guests
Ada, MN
Interested
MAR18
Sat 8 PM CDT · 17 guests
Ada, MN
Interested
APR18
Tue 8 PM UTC+01 · 22 guests
Edinburgh, United Kingdom
Interested
APR20
Apr 20 – Apr 21 · 123 guests
London, United Kingdom
Interested
APR22
Sat 8 PM UTC+01 · 19 guests
Blackpool, United Kingdom
Interested
APR24
Mon 8 PM UTC+01 · 12 guests
Sheffield, United Kingdom
Interested
APR26
Wed 8 PM UTC+02 · 56 guests
Lille, France
Interested
APR29
Sat 8 PM UTC+02 · 86 guests
Amsterdam, Netherlands
Interested
APR30
Sun 8 PM UTC+02 · 41 guests
Zürich, Switzerland
Interested
MAY2
Tue 8 PM UTC+02 · 29 guests
Dijon, France
Interested
MAY4
Thu 8 PM UTC+02 · 38 guests
Paris, France
Interested
MAY5
Fri 8 PM UTC+02 · 72 guests
Stuttgart, Germany
Interested
MAY6
Sat 8 PM UTC+02 · 37 guests
MCC Halle Münsterland
Interested
MAY8
Mon 8 PM UTC+02 · 23 guests
Festspielhaus
Interested
MAY10
Wed 8 PM UTC+02 · 69 guests
Hamburg, Germany
Interested
MAY12
Fri 8 PM UTC+02 · 79 guests
Düsseldorf, Germany
Interested
MAY13
Sat 8 PM UTC+02 · 34 guests
Bremerhaven, Germany
Interested
MAY14
Sun 8 PM UTC+02 · 29 guests
Swiss Life Hall (ehem. AWD Hall)
Interested
MAY16
Tue 8 PM UTC+02 · 36 guests
Freiburg, Germany
Interested
MAY17
Wed 8 PM UTC+02 · 18 guests
Ravensburg, Germany
Interested
MAY19
Fri 8 PM UTC+02 · 51 guests
Leipzig, Germany
Interested
MAY20
Sat 8 PM UTC+02 · 115 guests
Munich, Germany
Interested

https://jbonamassa.com/

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