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Assembly, Leamington Spa,
7 November 2010

First up the talented and versatile Cherry Lee Mewis who played a superb set on the second stage of this years Cambridge Rock Festival, her style combines the blues with touches of country and rock-a-billy, she has a fun easy going stage presence and a seriously good band playing alongside her and of course her biggest weapon, her fantastic voice.

Her set heavily featured tracks from the excellent Southbound Train album including the catchy All You Need, the smooth Midnight in Memphis, the upbeat Western Star and Southbound Train itself and another highlight of the set was her version of the old standard Wade in the Water.

A fantastic live performer and a real character, for me a star in the making, and this performance and her support slot on the Mud Morganfield UK tour will I am sure increase her fan base.

Chantel McGregor, photo by Andrew Lock

Another top lady of the blues on stage next, the electrifying blues/rock guitar of Chantel McGregor who along with her band performed a stunning set, if anything even better than her performance at Cambridge earlier in the year where as well as her own set on the Saturday she was also a special guest during Deborah Bonham's Friday's performance.

Highlights included Free Falling, Help Me and an electrifying version of the Joe Bonamassa track Sloe Gin which brought the house down.

Alongside her guitar prowess her powerful vocals also enriched the sound, she is yet to release an album but when she does I am sure it will cement her already growing reputation as a blues artist of the highest calibre.

Nimmo Brothers, photo by Andrew Lock

Time for the guys to entertain for the rest of the evening, first up the full on blues rock of Glasgow band the Nimmo Bros a four piece outfit who released their first album in 1998 and featured the red hot guitar slinging brothers Alan and Stevie who had the hall rocking and rolling with tracks including Long Way From Everything and the storming closing track The Shape I'm In, during the last number the audience well warmed up and completely rocked joined in on the chorus.

Like The Blues Assembly show last year it was great to have such a range of blues styles in one event and for me this was the headbanging section of the evening.

Matt Schofield, photo by Andrew Lock

The well respected and well travelled Matt Schofield from Manchester up next up who has been voted one of the ten best blues guitarists in the country, he is a true master of the blues guitar as he proved in a set full of traditional blues work outs, extended solos and virtuoso playing, the stand out tracks for me Ear to the Ground and two tracks from his latest album Heads Tales & Aces, Live Wire and the full on groove of Betting Man.

Mud Morganfield, photo by Andrew Lock

Headliner time and after a couple of warm up numbers from his excellent band on walked the man himself Mud Morganfield the oldest son of blues legend Muddy Waters to take a high seat centre stage and deliver a set of full on Chicago blues, looking the king of cool, dressed in a spectacular gold shirt and with a voice rich and full of character he delivered a faultless set of blues classics, including of course several numbers made famous by his father including Baby, Please Don't Go, Walkin' Thru the Park, The Same Thing and a stunning Hoochie Coochie Man.

Between tracks Mud had the crowd enthralled with stories about his father, and it was very touching to hear him talk about his pride in being able to play his fathers music for people who never had a chance to see him perform.

A show stopping Mannish Boy closed the main set and for the encore a red hot Got My Mojo Working finished proceedings in style to end another great night of the blues here in Leamington, same next year please.

Review and photos by Andrew Lock


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