Lillehammer Blues Festival

Review of Mick Taylor - Concert in Lillehammer, Norway 2. April 2004

I' ve been a fan of The Rolling Stones since I first heard them in 1990 (only 12 then), and the line- up featuring Mick Taylor quickly became a favourite. I was therefore thrilled when I, by chance, found out that he was billed at Lillehammer International Blues Festival. The festival was held at a big, old, and not too- cozy hotel. But, as it turned out, a great place to arrange festivals like this; all the concerts in the same building, and the main- scene located in a huge bar downstairs. After having dinner at the hotel we (my gf and I) went downstairs to see The Yardbirds. I didn't know what to expect from them, so they turned out to be one great surprise. From the beginning they sounded tight, and energy- driven British- blues-rock isn't exactly the worst music a stones- fan can get is it ? (Go see them if you have a chance!). Next on stage was Mick Taylor with band, and I had used the break to find a perfect place right in front of the stage. It was really great to stand so close and study his guitar work. No one plays guitar like Mick Taylor, and despite not being in his best shape, he still made some moments of magic this night. He opened with "Secret affair" and next was "Twisted sister", two of the best songs from his latest studio- album, both sounded good with lots of nice guitar- parts. Later he played "Blues in the morning", another good song from the same record. From his first solo- album (which still is a pleasure to listen to) he played the cool instrumental "Giddy- up". From the stones- catalogue he only played the instrumental second part of "Cant you hear me knocking", which he probably wrote without getting credit. The rest of the set- list was unknown for me, one Freddie King- number I think, and a quite boring blues- encore with Mick sitting on stage playing. (Leaving the microphone to the bass- player on this one). After the show I asked if I could come back- stage and get a signature, but were told that Mick had went straight to bed, which I guess was truth. I really hope Mick will come and play in Norway again soon, there is a growing interest for blues in the country, with some really good festivals. I would also enjoyed to hear Mick play with the Stones again (no problem with three guitar- players is it?! - Jagger could throw away his;)), but I guess that's not going to happen. I have attached a nice photo of Mick I took in the middle of the show.

Lars, Oslo - Norway