Concert Review: The Tedeschi Trucks Band Live at The Beacon Theatre – October 3, 2015

The Tedeschi Trucks band delivered a highly spirited performance to an enthusiastic audience at the Beacon Theatre on October 3, 2015. The two plus hour concert spotlighted the refined skills of each of the band members and included originally orchestrated covers of The Beatles, Joe Cocker, James Taylor, Leonard Cohen and traditional blues. There was ultimately the forging of a magical unity, a seamless marriage of styles, by an old soul, a 36 year old guitar wizard with one eye on music’s past and the other looking forward, an integral part of music’s evolution.  With no shortage of electricity in the air, the band delivered head bobbing blues songs heavy with soul and gritty with tradition. Tedeschi’s voice, a cross between Bonnie Raitt and Janis Joplin, soulfully carried many of the songs while Derek Trucks’ guitar wailed, warbled and screamed, lending overall vibrant color and dynamism. As the night unfolded it became apparent that Trucks is sole heir to the throne vacated by Jimi Hendrix and Duane Allman. His mastery over the guitar is unmatched, yet it is his ability, like Jeff Beck, to turn his instrument into a vehicle of communication that makes Trucks rock’s greatest current guitarist. His solos swirled and wailed with an energy that seemed to summon forth the grand spirit of brother Duane, thel divinity of the Beacon’s downtown forefather, the Fillmore East. The band mixed a colorful brew of Americana and rock, offering covers of Cohen’s “Bird on a Wire,” the Box Tops/Joe Cocker’s “The Letter,” James Taylor’s “Fire and Rain” and three unexpected Beatles covers, “Something,” “I’ve Got A Feeling” and “With A Little Help From My Friends,” the latter highlighted by Tedeschi’s electrifying Joplinesque howls. The night served as a welcome reminder that rock, in its classic form, is far from dead.

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