Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Me & The Q, Part Two

As it always seems to go, I see NRBQ perform live and the morning after I begin what is usually a week long marathon of listening to nothing but The Q.

Last night, playing to a little more than a half full room at B.B. King's, Terry Adams and the new Q once again gave me the greatest show ever. What can I say? I love these guys.

Yeah, yeah, I know.

"Not the same without Big Al."

"He shouldn't call the band, NRBQ."

Who gives a crap?  This band kicks major ass.  There is NO band with or without Big Al that is this much fun or this diverse. This band has more chops than the meat department at Bohack.

Last night's highlights:

A stunning version of the Everlys "Let It Be Me"

Hot Biscuits & Sweet Marie sung by temporary drummer Joe Camarillo

Peanut Vendor, which was both beautiful and frickin' OUT THERE

And my very fave moment--

Heard the Herman's Hermits on the radio and thought, "What if Chuck Berry did this song?"

BOOM...a rockin' & rollin' "I'm Into Something Good."


Boys played for 2 1/2 hours.

Was hoping to find a full version of the Herman's Berries, but only an excerpt was floating about.

Did find a complete show in two parts from earlier this year, though.

Not bad for early morning.

Part One up top. Part Two below.


buzzbabyjesus said...

I love the Q. It's okay they have new members. Big Al replaced Steve Ferguson. In heavy rotation over here right now is "Blue Monk", by Terry Adams and Steve Ferguson from their 2006 album "Louisville Sluggers".

Sal Nunziato said...

Great version of "Blue Monk" last night.

Noam Sane said...

"I'm Into Something Good." One of Carole King's best. Love that song, love the Q, love Terry. Miss hearing him sing but hey.

I have not managed to see this version of the band yet. My life is more complicated now than back when I'd catch them a half-dozen times a year (usually at the Chestnut Cabaret in Philly...but I remember a show at the Lone Star Roadhouse in the mid-80s where I was treated to a killer "In Walked Bud".)

But I'll keep trying. Always great to see a Q post on my fave blog.

A walk in the woods said...

Nice post. I sure do love the 'Q, too. A fave memory of mine (along with seeing them live 3-4 times, mostly in the 90s) was when they played Atlanta around 1994 or so. The whole band was eating burritos in the late, great Atlanta eatery Tortillas and had open a copy of Creative Loafing, our local alternative paper. One of the guys, Al maybe, was reading the local reviewer's preview of the 'Q show that evening. Interesting to hear him read the review, about him and his band, out loud.

Here's a fun clip of Terry participating in a Piano Red tribute (great old-time Atlanta pianist) from 2010:

I need to see them again live.

William Repsher said...

I've always wondered why Big Star is constantly written up as this legendary pop band from the 70s (they weren't), while a band like NRBQ which was putting out great albums at the same time, and thereafter, doesn't get anywhere near that level of press.

Was anyone here actually into Big Star in the 70s? I know I wasn't. Didn't even know they existed until Paul Westerberg and others pointed it out in the mid-80s. Nothing against Big Star. The first two albums are high-quality pop, and the third a real odd, dark album that works. Was it the darkness associated with the band -- Bell checking out and Chilton being such an odd duck from the 70s onwards?

Meanwhile, NRQB are portrayed as a bunch of goofy nice guys from Connecticut who never quite made it, but got mentioned routinely any time a rock star gave an interview and mentioned favorite bands. I spend a lot more time listening to NRQB than I do Big Star.

My favorite moment isn't even musical. Around the time in the 80s when Springsteen put out that huge live box set, which everyone seemed to be buying, the guys in NRBQ had their picture taken. In a record store, waiting in line, each band member looking serious as a heart attack, clutching the Springsteen live set to their breast. Those guys had a great sense of humor.

A walk in the woods said...

That is a great point, William Repsher. I'm a huge Alex Chilton fan, but I have to admit, I don't actually listen to that much Big Star. And even my Chilton fanship is focused on just a couple of his albums... that early album of his just reissued, and High Priest album and such - never listen to them.

I think you're right about the darkness attracting huzzahs to Big Star. Also, there's something about their name and intention - to be big stars - that I think attracts some retroactive appreciation amongst power pop fans. As if we're trying to give them what they were originally after.

The Q did hew a more consistent path of good music, though.

Anonymous said...

IIRC, that photo of the Q boys with the Springsteen box was taken at Cutler's in New Haven, a once-mighty record store. (Don't know if they're still around.)Haven't seen Terry's version of the band yet, but have caught The Spampinato Brothers a couple of times - good, garagey fun. (And Johnny Spamp is a lontime member of The Incredible Casuals - old friends, and rulers of The Beachcomber on The Cape.) As for Big Star, I like them just fine, but just don't worship them the way that a lot of the younger hipster types do. You have to remember that those records basically didn't exist for many years - they didn't sell at all, and it took me YEARS to track down all 3. So maybe they always had a Holy Grail thing going. Not a huge solo Chilton fan, but the tribute at Jazz Fest a couple of years ago was wonderful. But give me ANY configuration of NRBQ - anytime, anywhere. Greatest Goddamned band in The Universe, if you catch them on the right night... - bill buckner

Ken D said...

I was sitting in the airport in Albuquerque yesterday when I opened BW to find this. What a treat — and it could not have come at a better time!

I've heard all the complaints re the "new" Q and you're right—who cares? Great band, great music, great spirit.
And really, Terry is probably the only one who couldn't be replaced. Who else could play his Monk-meets-Jerry Lee style?

FRED said...

never heard a single q album i have ever liked. they seem more eager to do stunts than music. all the chops in the world will not give you a soul. i saw them live in the 70s. at best they were annoying. a very empty band. no matter what the lineup.

Noam Sane said...

i hate to see you with a guy like that
he don't do nothin' but complain
he hears all music the same