Its been 24 years since I last paid to see the same artist, 2 nights on the trot, in different cities, and that was for Jonathan Richman too. At that time I was accompanied by McD and Lee. This time, McD came last night and Lee tonight.
Jojos Manchester gig the night before had been fantastic, but at the Brudenell Social Club in Leeds, he really was on fire – a more joyous gig I cant imagine. A very different set from the previous night had him do one of my all time faves ‘When I Dance’ and my new found fave ‘My Baby Loves Loves Loves Me‘.
‘I Was Dancing In The Lesbian Bar’ turned into a drum and dance fest that saw Jojo abandon his Spanish guitar for sleigh or cow bells, moving and shaking and high kicking like a man half his age. Tommy Larkin on drums adds a new dimension to his sound and often Jojo just stands back and watches him, obviously having fun with a smile like a Cheshire cat.
As ever its his asides during songs that give big laughs and endear him to his audience. ‘This ones in French, just cos it sounds better that way’ Lee, who’s fluent in French was highly amused because his internation was just the same in French! ‘On Her beauty is raw and wild’ he broke off after the line “she dont need nothing in her hair – You know she says to me Jonathan, sometimes I do put things in my hair and I say I know I’m just saying you dont have to, thats what it says in the song, you have to listen to the lyrics cos I’m very precise with my words” and back into the song.
There were wonderful moments of sublime guitar playing when you could hear a pin drop and then rock out joy when he sang about Keith Richards (‘Loud as a steam train, Skinny as a rake’). My gig of the year so far……and that’s saying something
Bob the Chiropodist
Another review here