The Fabulous Thunderbirds are go, go going to the Jazz Cafe
PUBLISHED: 18:01 03 July 2013 | UPDATED: 18:01 03 July 2013
American band will be playing two nights in Camden
The Fabulous Thunderbirds are all go – for two nights in Camden.
For more than three decades this quintessential American band has manifested itself into a unique musical hybrid via such barnburners as “Tuff Enuff” and “Wrap It Up”.
Co-founder Kim Wilson, the sole original member, still spearheads the group as it evolves into its newest incarnation thanks to their powerful sound, influenced by a diversity of musical styles
In addition to Kim, the current Thunderbirds line-up features Jay Moeller on drums, Johnny Moeller and Mike Keller on guitar, and Randy Bermudes on bass.
The band continues to tour extensively, in both the U.S. and Europe.
Kim is currently writing songs on his own, with band members and other writers.
He said: “To be in the T-Birds, you need to understand the different styles of music and different ways of playing.
“You have to be willing to adopt a more contemporary style. The guys we have now are able to do that.
“I’ve primarily been a solo songwriter, but I’m looking forward to experimenting with the guys in the band.”
The thread throughout the T-Birds career has been the respect the group commanded for its peerless musicianship and devotion to the sounds of blues, R & B and rock ‘n roll.
In fact, the late Muddy Waters called Kim his favourite harmonica player and vocalist.
“Muddy Waters was very good to me,” Kim said.
“He almost adopted me. I’ll never forget him.”
Kim’s musical journey started in Goleta, California, when at the age of 17 he began playing the harmonica.
His influences included Little Walter, George “Harmonica” Smith, Lazy Lester and James Cotton and at the same time he began singing.
He launched a search for other musicians who shared his love of the blues and artists such as Bobby “Blue” Bland, B.B. King, Otis Rush, Jimmy Rodgers and Muddy Waters, so headed to Minneapolis. He stayed there for a year and a half before moving to the burgeoning music scene of Austin, Texas.
It was there that he met Jimmie Vaughan and they founded the T-Birds in 1974.
The band developed a reputation as a compelling live act and subsequently signed a record deal with CBS/Epic Records.
In 1986, the T-Birds reached a commercial peak with the album, “Tuff Enuff” and the singles “Wrap It Up” and “Look At That”, all went top 40.
Kim said: “The thing about the T-Birds is that we can play both blues festival and rock venues.
“We’re a diversified band now and everybody’s on the same page.”
As a side project Kim formed Kim Wilson’s Blues Revue, a traditional blues band and also owns a blues label, Blue Collar Music, which has released three albums.
. “This is a great time for this band,” he said.
“We’re looking forward to the future.”
The Fabulous Thunderbirds will be playing at the Jazz Café on July 15 and 16.
For more information and to buy tickets visit www.mamacolive.com/thejazzcafe/ or call 0844 847 2514.
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