And my oh my! This is going to be HUGE!
When I was a kid growing up playing music, I was obsessed with the likes of James Brown, Stevie Wonder, Otis Reading, Aretha Franklin, Ray Charles and loads of more of the 60s/70’s era of American Soul Music.
I was born in ’79 so there wasn’t really much of this music when I was growing up, it was all through listening to my mum and dad’s records. In fact, it was when my dad played me ‘Mister Magic’ by Grover Washington that it completely sealed my love affair with the tenor sax.
As a teenager, this resurgence of soul/funk/disco was a breath of fresh air. Acid Jazz Records became massive….both with The Brand New Heavies and bigger still Jamiroquai.
20 years on I’m now playing with the bass player of Jamiroquai…. Paul Turner himself!
Steve Pearce was the original bass player from Brother Strut (and an awesome one at that!). He’d played on records that have sold hundreds of millions, including a few of my heroes like Herbie Hancock, Stevie Wonder and The Average White Band.
During our last tour, Steve couldn’t make a show in Oxford as he was performing with The Average White Band, and we had to get a replacement for the show.
This was when Paul Turner from Jamiroquai stepped into the frame.
Naturally, I was a little nervous for our Oxford Show, as we didn’t have time to rehearse and it was straight into the show that night.
We went out for a bite to eat (Wagamamas if I remember!), a couple of beers to settle myself and then went into the gig called ‘The Cellar’
The atmosphere in that club was absolutely buzzing, it was only a small club, but had completely sold out so it was wall to wall people, and they were almost on the stage they were that close to you! (there was condensation dripping from the walls from all the funk in that crowd!) Certainly one of the most memorable gigs of the tour, that’s for sure.
Paul, flew through the gig with NO mistakes and absolutely KILLED IT.
It was later on in that year that Steve Pearce, the original bass player decided to leave the band……and Paul, naturally was the next guy on the list – and was so pleased when he agreed to join the band!
Paul has now played on the forthcoming album, and he is an absolute monster of a player, taking the funk to a serious new level.
You can check out a little sneak preview of Paul from the studio, playing on the new album here!