Mike Sanchez and his U.K. band does not have a set list they let the music flow and the crowd is welcomed to shout out the numbers that are special to them creating an eclectic and inclusive set of blues, rockabilly and rock and roll delivered with style by Mike and his band of superb musicians. You cannot avoid being taken in by Mike’s giant warm personality with buckets loads of charisma that is natural and you know he is enjoying bringing joyful live music entertainment to you. The numbers ranged from Little Richard, John Lee Hooker, Fats Domino, etc… The supporting cast to the luscious piano delivered by Mike were his regular U.K. Band comprising of Drums, Mark Morgan; Double Bass, Nick Whitfield and Guitar, Tom Bull provided a clean/tight back-drop for Mike with the combination of fine musicianship that was balanced and created a whole. There is no doubt that the double bass, Nick’s weapon of choice provides a special timbre to this style of music and Nick delivered top drawer double bass throughout the evening and the solo interludes demonstrated why this instrument provides a tone electric bass however played simply cannot deliver. Tom Bell produced some wonderful guitar licks delivered with a subtlety that made them a delight delivered with a twang and whole lot of soul, Tom made the guitar strings purr in a delightful contrast to Nick’s double bass strumming. Half way through the set out strode Sarah Wynne, Mike’s wife of one week, who took over the vocals and the tempo definitely went up a notch or two, enabling Mike to show everyone what a talent he is as a keyboard player and the chemistry between the two of them was electric.
By the end of the night, The Met @ Abertillery was a rockin’ and a rollin’ with lots of audience participation as they took to the space at the front of the stage to dance the night away creating a tremendous live event feeling, that makes live music so intimate and special. Mike, who played the local festival in 2011, gave a great plug for Abertillery 2013 and a lucky person in the audience won two weekend tickets; and Mike even hinted to delight of his many fans listening tonight that he could be at the festival n 2014! He then went straight into great rendition, with his own twist and musical turns, of Welsh rock star Dave Edmunds ‘Deep In The Heart of Texas’; delivering the approval of the audience. Also included was a clever, entertaining medley of great classics that was Mike’s version of ‘Name That Tune!; the medley included ‘Whole Lotta Love‘; ‘Boom, Boom,Boom‘; ‘Shake Your Hips’; finishing off with Mike playing the Maracas ‘Bo Diddly‘; this was pure fun to watch, hear and be part off. Mike’s expressive face made Howlin Wolf’s ‘How Many More Times‘, fresh and alive this is how covers should be performed; not as an exercise to show off the riffs, chords and beats that you have learnt but as a celebration of a classic number. To end the show he had the audience eating out of his hand, loving every moment as he took random request after request, his repertoire is quite staggering. Wow! What a brilliant evening everyone was truly entertained.
Liz Aiken Photography has more photographs click here