Most of the names were obscure but six blues headliners each took their turn in the spotlight last night at the Bayou. Headed by Junior Wells, the parade of talent transformed the evening's concert into a full blues festival.
First up were Amos Garrett and Geoff Muldaur; sitting with guitars in their laps, the duo recreated old blues and country tunes.Muldaur sang with all the flair of his former bosses, Paul Butterfield and Jim Kweskin. Garrett picked fluid guitar lines with an almost organ-like resonance.
Then one by one, the four Southside Allstars from Chicago took their turns with a shop three-man rhythm section. Tenor saxophonist Eddie Shaw danced around as he played and sang so-so rhythm & blues party song Hubert Sumlin, Howlin' Worf's guitarist for 25 years, fast-fingered his waythrought three instrumentals. Jimmy Dawkins proved only a fair singer that got a big, showy sound on guitar.
But the star was undoubytedly Junior Wells. The 44-year-old Chicago legend jived with the audience and conducted his musicians to set up his teasing harmonica solos and vocal climaxes. Shaw and Sumlin returned as Wells boomed, clucked, roared crooned and warbled his familiar standards.
Garrett and Muldamr will be at the Cellar Door tonight and Tuesday.