Jammin’ at The Highway

Friday nite we had another great jam at The Caxton Arms, The Highway, East London. It was worth the effort to get to this isolated spot in the strange nether reaches between Wapping, Shadwell and The City. The great Woodie House Band consisting of the talented teenagers Jaron and Rolen on keyboards and drums (Jaron also does some great vocals), with Trevor on bass guitar and John Hills on lead guitar/vocals, plus their guest musicians on sax, drums, etc.

 These guests included Andre with his wonderful slide guitar sounds, all the way from what we must now call St Petersburg, Russia (but which I still think of as Leningrad. Why go back to the German name, and not to the Russian name Petrograd I wonder?)

 Michael T.  Clayton doing Jerry Lee-style boogie on the ivories, also vocals, and Corliss Randall giving us a taste of her raunchy New Orleans Blues and Soul. Plus Jay Chance and Rockin’ Gerry Champion.

 Corliss Randall

Corliss Randall

Most of these will also be appearing at my Retirement Party in May, along with Jerry Lee’s niece, MaryJean. Keith Woods certainly has a good thing going with this band and these great jam sessions, plus the yearly events like the 50 Years of Skiffle and 2I’s Tribute nights. And he keeps discovering new talent.

 Meanwhile, the older legends like Jerry Lee rock on. Just having completed a very successful tour of Continental Europe, he is now booked for shows in the States (including the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival) and then a further European tour. He has never been more popular since the 1950s, with many appearances on U.S. TV over the past few months, his best-selling album ever, Last Man Standing, duetting with other legends, now heading for gold record status, and now an accompanying DVD ‘Last Man Standing Live’ with some other legends not on the CD. Part of this mammoth 2 hour DVD was shown on PBS TV stations in the States in March.

So it was a shock to read Jerry has canceled all his concert dates and is going into semi-retirement, till I noticed the date – April 1st. The Killer Rocks On!

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