Hot Music on a Hot Night at the Midsummer Meltdown

By on July 23, 2019

People's Blues of Richmond performing at this year's Midsummer Meltdown. Guitarist Beavers almost aways performs without a shirt. Photo, Kip Tabb

People’s Blues of Richmond performing at this year’s Midsummer Meltdown. Guitarist Beavers almost always performs without a shirt. Photo, Kip Tabb

This year’s Midsummer Meltdown, Sunday, in Corolla may have been too aptly named. Happening right in the middle of summer, the heat and humidity sent the misery index soaring and even at 8:00 in the evening it was still more than warm.

But the Bearded Face Productions show is not about the temperatures so much as the music, and the music this year on the deck of Mike Dianna’s Grill Room was stunning…amazing…and downright hot.

This is the third time I’ve seen the People’s Blues (PBR) of Richmond and every time I walk away in awe of how good these guys are.

PRB is a trio with Tim Beavers on guitar, Matthew Volkes on bass and Nekoro Williams on drums. What is so impressive is how full, complex and innovative their music is.

Their sound is not easily described. There is certainly blues in it. Some great in your face hard rock. Some Psychedelia…What makes them stand out, though, is how tight they are musically and the range of what they do with their music.

This is a band that is not afraid to take chances—and when they do, it works.

They have a new CD coming out, Maria Doesn’t Care, and on Sunday they performed the title track.

They started the song with a psychedelic like jam, featuring some amazing guitar work from Beavers. Then, abruptly, that stopped, the meter and tempo changed, and they were into Maria Doesn’t Care, which is a beautiful blues ballad.

What’s interesting about what they did on Sunday is the intro is nothing like they did on the CD’s title track. There they just went straight into the song. That they are willing to take a chance like that and challenge themselves and the audience—and pull it off so well—is what the best bands do.

C2 & the Brothers Reed showing how good a jam band can be. Photo, Kip Tabb

C2 & the Brothers Reed showing how good a jam band can be. Photo, Kip Tabb

They’ll be back. Don’t miss them.

C2 & the Brothers Reed got things going on Sunday. They had bit of a problem. It seems they had just lost their lead singer.

So…instead of a scripted playlist, they jammed. And what a jam it was.

Shifting seamlessly between jazz, country, rock and blues, for little more than an hour, they Cameron Clark on bass, Kelly Reed wailing on guitar, James Weishar on keyboards and drummer Kody Reed put on a clinic on how to jam.

It seems inevitable to think, “If these guys are this good jamming for an hour without a lead singer, what would the band be like with some vocals thrown in?”

With any luck, we’ll find out and they’ll be back.


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