February 20th, 1999
Matt Walsh & Band
Fay Victor & Gregor Hilden Band
Angela Brown & Chris Rannenberg Band
Be careful! Danger of avalanche! Happily it wasn't a mass of snow that landed on the visitors to the Haus der Jugend, but "only" the blues avalanche. For the fifth time the friends of the 12-bar music that have organised themselves into the group the Blues Verstaerker (The Blues Supporters) offered blues live: three bands, three varieties and to end with - a jam session.
Matt Walsh opened the evening. The Irishman who lives in Münster and his band provided an accomplished beginning. There was electric blues with a lot of harp embellished with the qualified string work of guitarist Erhard Hirt. Musical versions , for example of the history of the time when Dubliners worked as long-distance drivers ("Tumblin Down the Highway") were played by Hirt with funky riffs and the rhythm group marched energetically along with him.
Then the Blueslawine in the well-attended Haus der Jugend came to the subject: "Woman's Blues", Fay Victor demonstrated how good she is to listen to. Accompanied by the Gregor Hilden Band from Münster the singer from New York provided elegant blues. She performed slow blues full of feeling , shuffled her way animatedly through "Oh Wee Baby" and Gregor Hilden worked on his 59 Gibson Les Paul. These guitar treasures were loosened with fluent runs and swinging chords. The charged soul blues version of classic "On Broadway" was decorated with a number solos, and one which particularly drew attention was the witty one played by the drummer: he carried out his assignment with just a quick whirl.
The appearance of Angela Brown and the Chris Rannenberg Band provided a contrast: these two, well known in Osnabrück went to work lustily, earthily and expressively. Angela was in top form and presented to the public the things that are important to her "Love, friendship and a lot of enjoyment in life."
Accompanied by inviting gestures and intensive miming she let her intensive vocal organ volley forth fuelled by Ranenberg's piano and band and a band which kept decently in the background. One felt with every note the musician's experience and an immense capacity for feeling.
As he had already done in Gregor Hilden band Tommy Schneller provided for the saxophone accent. It was also he who brought a friend to the night session on the stage, a male voice that could match Angela's blues pipes: Johnny Rodgers from North Carolina. With him all the musicians involved brought this blues lawine to a furious climax.
Relieved that despite the problems over the appearance of American blues musician Dave Myers last year had found such a positive resonance the Bluesverstärker celebrated their success.
NOZ on 22.02.1999, Tom Bullmann
Photos: Eric Schäfer