Friday, May 29, 2009

The Knickerbocker Cafe Grand Opening Weekend

Last weekend was the grand opening of The Knickerbocker Cafe in Westerly, Rhode Island. Three nights of great music, dancing, food and more than a few cocktails marked the rebirth of this historic venue.

 Everybody on the Knick team worked very hard to get ready for this event. The place looked fantastic and a sell out crowd enjoyed the shows.

Saturday night was a blues review featuring Guitar Johnny Nicholas, Duke Robillard, Greg Piccolo and Sugar Ray Norcia. Joining Johnny on the bandstand from Texas were Joel Guzman on accordion, piano and B-3 organ and the incomparable Al Gomez on trumpet. Guitar Johnny was in rare form that night. Beside acting as the MC, his singing and tasty guitar work lit up the room. A great night of blues.

It was a treat to see Duke and Greg back on the stage at the Knick, where the Roomful of Blues made so much history years ago. When Duke and Sugar Ray traded verses on Honey Hush, I was taken back to the night I saw Big Joe Turner play the Knick backed by Roomful. That was a memorable night and I was lucky to be present in The Alcove for both shows.

On Sunday night, Delbert McClinton brought his brand of Texas roadhouse music to Westerly. Backed by a band of young guns, Delbert showed a sold out crowd what real country music is suppose to sound like. You don't hear music like that coming out of Nashville these days. I guarantee Rascal Flatts and Taylor Swift will not be playing the Knick. Not even on Sh*T Night.

Besides the locals, there were some real Delbert fans in the house, including a couple that drove from Pittsburgh for the show. I think everyone enjoyed the show. I know I did.

Be sure to catch James Montgomery and J. Geils tonight. It will be another great night of blues at the Knick. I have known James since The Maniac introduced him to the Floyd's Hotel crew in the '70's. He is an energetic player who always puts on a good show.

See you there.


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