James Hunter Six entered the stage with their own infectious music a mix of British R’n’B with that added dimension Soul music, performed at The Lantern, Colston Hall as part of the Americana weekend in Bristol. It always amazes me that you can see him at intimate venues with the powerhouse of musical talent – it is a continuing mystery why he doesn’t play to larger audiences. That is the problem when you are, like so many other accomplished musicians a ‘best kept secret’. Everyone who loves live music should start shouting out loud and get James Hunter known throughout the stratosphere. Until that happens his many fans can enjoy the music that conjures up Sam Cooke, James Brown and Wilson Pickett up close to listen watch and enjoy the supremacy of live music played with verve and passion.
James Hunter writes great music and the other five members of the band deliver a deep rhythm that gets those dancing feet moving and the energy of music soaring through your veins. We were treated with music from his latest album the superb Minute By Minute including Chicken Switch, The Gypsy a clever tune and lyrics that pull you in and mesmerise you and Let The Monkey Ride. Intermingled in the high-octane set were tracks from his two Grammy nominated albums, People Gonna Talk and The Hard Way including Jacqueline and Believe Me Baby.
James Hunter once again delivered Rhythm and Blues that captivated, entertained and were an inspiring delivery that yes is classic but has a modern twist it is music that wants and should be heard far and wide. His vocals can be considered as he pours emotions into a ballad then on a turn of a sixpence he lets out that squeal the tempo picks up he is like a jack-in-the-box on stage full of bubbling energy and a stage patter that is cheeky and never sickly smooth he says whatever comes into his mind in the moment. There is a feeling that nothing is rehearsed it is being developed on stage, but this is no chaotic jam it is music that meshes the layers with James’ hypnotic high speed guitar and vocal range that defies description to his left we have horns that add to the feel that soul is in the air. The rhythm section of double bass and drums give him the solid platform so he can take a musical leap into the blues and play and the keys give him a foil to interact and play off as the keys mimic his chords. The mix is a magic musical soup that is full of tasty sounds and you just want the music to play on. Bluesdoodles says, go see him live you will be hooked.