Ray Davies and John Mayal?

Both of these guys are coming to town. Can they still bring it to the stage, or these just more geriatric acts to avoid?

I saw Ray Davies last October in New Orleans; Frankly, I have never been a huge Kinks fan, but as he was playing at a 3 day music festival (VooDoo Fest) that I was already attending, I gladly went over to the stage he was playing to check out his set.

It was very enjoyable, although since he played at a festival he only performed for about an hour, which is probably a much shorter time period than he would play at a show he headlines at.

I don’t know if it would actually hold my interest for a full 2 hours or more, but what I heard I really liked.

(He was shot in an attempted mugging a few years ago in New Orleans, and this was the first time he had played there since the shooting. He made a joke or two about it, so apparently he doesn’t blame the city…)

To quote a friend at a Peter Green concert some 10-15 years ago “If he plays at 10% of his old talent he would still be good”.

I saw John Mayal a couple of years ago and he was good but not great. He came across like he thought he was too big for the venue.

Even in his heyday, John Mayall’s considerable reputation rested not so much on his own musical abilities (not that he wasn’t very talented), but on his incredible way of discovering and nurturing other huge talents, who played in his band and, in many cases, then went on to greater fame and success than Mayall himself ever had. Eric Clapton, Jack Bruce, Mick Fleetwood, John McVie, the aforementioned Peter Green, and Mick Taylor of the Stones spring to mind as perhaps the biggest stars to be discovered by Mayall, there were a host of other great musicians who played with him and often had a good deal of success after.

So, I would not be asking so much “How good is Mayall these days?” but “Who (if anyone) is in his band now?” (and, “Does he still have his old ability to pick them?”).