As many of you know Bernard has been traveling Europe with Ruf's Blues Caravan! His comrades are Mike Zito and Vanja Sky!
Here are some some highlights of this last tour!
Bernard Allison & Mike Zito speak to Celis Freddy before the Moulin Blues Ospel festival! Here they talk about their New Releases, The Blues Caravan and Future Projects!
Bernard performing "Voodoo Chile" on May 4th, 2018 at The Jazzfest Rottweil!
The Blues Caravan performing "Serious" in Verviers at the Spirit of 66 on May 2nd, 2018
An Unexpected Gift: This was a very special moment captured by Mario Dawson as Bernard gave this deserving young man his guitar!
A Review From Alan Childs after the show in South Hampton, UK at the Brook.
WOW, WOW, and thrice WOW! Last night the Blues Caravan Tour rolled into The Brook, Southampton and, boy, did it shake the place up. I've seen some great shows at this venue but none quite prepared me for this. A well thought out, cleverly constructed show gave us the lot, fine vocals, scintillating musicianship and stunning solos, building all the time towards a fantastic climax. Just when you thought it couldn't get any better, it did....and often! Not for this band of brothers (and sister) the usual 90 minute set. From launching into "Low Down and Dirty" to the final notes of the encore, "Serious", a whole 3 hours had passed. Yes, they had a 20 minute break but for the remaining 2hrs 40mins they were treating our eyes and ears to some truly mesmerising music, with a fair dose of humour too. At any given time there would be 3 or 4, and sometimes all 5 on stage but much credit must go to the rhythm kings, Mario Dawson (drums) and Roger Inniss (bass) who kept it all going, superbly, without the breaks afforded the other three. After the opening number the young, delightful and extremely talented Vanja Krbavcic (Sky) had the hardest job of getting proceedings underway, as the 2 big hitters, Mike Zito and Bernard Allison, left the stage. She succeeded admirably, giving us a selection of songs from her new album "Bad Penny". Although a new name to many of us, touring with such experienced and accomplished musicians will, I'm sure, help propel her to greater things and carve out a successful music career. Mike Zito, who had joined Vanja for one song, then took over and his voice was even better than when I last saw him in 2016. His playing was sublime and Bernard joined him on stage to close the first half. If that half was good, what followed was amazing. Bernard Allison was on fire and produced sounds from his guitar that I've not heard before, at one stage you could be forgiven for believing there was an organ up there. "Voodoo Child" was just sensational and when he and Mike played together on "Bad News", it had to be seen to be believed as their guitars talked to each other. Such was the fun that even Roger's bass got in on the act. Among the many other songs played were "Make Blues Not War", "First Class Love", "Bad Love", "Mama Don't Want No Wa Wa", "Married Man", "Crossroads Of Life", "Do you Wanna", "Life Is A Bitch". A great deal of credit should go to the sound man on the night as it was the best I've personally heard at the venue. So, if you are thinking about getting tickets for this band, don't delay as they are worthy of filling all of the venues on this tour. They really are that good and nights like this don't come along too often. With thanks to Otto Woyczieniuk for the photograph.
Ruf’s Blues Caravan at Hartlepool Supporters Club in Hartlepool, UK
Blues, Concert Reviews, UK
Bringing together a formidable array of talent from across the globe, the Ruf Blues Caravan pulls into Teesside for a spectacular show at the Hartlepool Supporters Club.
Featuring three of the hottest blues guitarists on the circuit – Bernard Allison, Mike Zito and Vanja Sky are here to celebrate the life of the legendary Luther Allison. This year marks the 20th anniversary of Allison’s passing. Of course, Luther’s son Bernard features prominently throughout the show.
A world-class rhythm section of Roger Innis, who is armed with his distinctive 6 string bass and Mario Dawson on drums keep things tight whilst accompanying each of the three featured guitarists throughout their 2-hour performance. During the course of their musical marathon, the three-piece frequently switches things up, with each artist taking their moment in the spotlight.
Following a group introductory number, Vanja Sky takes centre stage. This being the Croatian guitarist’s first tour of the UK, and with a new album under her belt via Ruf Records, Vanja takes the opportunity to showcase her latest offering. This includes her slide fuelled rendition of “Crossroads of Life”, the heartfelt and emotive “Married Man” along with her sensational take on the Rory Gallagher classic “Bad Penny”. The latter of which also happens to be the title track of her new record.
Two times 2017 Blues Award nominee – US-based singer/songwriter, guitarist and producer extraordinaire Mike Zito is getting ready to release his impressive 15th studio album First Class Life via Ruf Records on the 11th May. Tonight the St Louis native whet’s the Teesside crowd’s appetite for his new record by performing key cuts from the album. This includes the title track itself as well as the incredibly funky “Mama Don’t Like No Wah Wah”. Zito co-wrote the aforementioned track with Bernard Allison, who joins Mike onstage to perform the song live tonight. The number recollects Allison’s time performing alongside the legendary Koko Taylor.
Zito wows the Hartlepool crowd with his soulful take on Bobby Blue Bland’s “I Wouldn’t Treat a Dog (The Way You Treat Me)”, his up-tempo Texas blues number “Wasted Time” as well as delivering some blistering fretwork during the politically tinged “Make Blues Not War”. Of course, we can all relate to the sentiment of the latter.
Taking to the stage last Bernard Allison also gives the crowd a taste of his new album Let It Go, whilst at the same time paying tribute to his father. Bernard delivers some passionate playing during “You’re Gonna Need Me”; this being a song that his dad had written, and as such he performs this slow blues number his own way. However, it is Bernard’s exhibition of guitar mastery during his unique take on the Hendrix classic “Voodoo Chile” that completely captivates the Hartlepool audience.
The showmanship continues as Bernard is joined onstage by Mike Zito during a cover of Luther Allison’s Motown number “Bad News Is Coming” during which these uber talented blues brothers entertain the crowd with a creative and light-hearted guitar conversation, the likes of which we’ve never seen before.
As the show heads to its conclusion Vanja Sky re-joins her esteemed c