Concert Revue & Photography By: Alan Duckworth
Blood Sweat & Tears first started blending rock and jazz over four decades ago. Considered one of the greatest horn ensembles in rock and roll; they have undoubtedly progressed the genre. You might even say they progressed rock as much as The Beatles did! Although their line-up might of changed over the years, talent wise they remain on top staying true to the Blood Sweat & Tears reputation of being one of rock’s greatest jazz bands. Thursday night at Rams Head On Stage, they were running the gamut.
Blood Sweat & Tears current line-up includes new lead singer Bo Bice, Carl Fischer on trumpet, Jon Ossman on bass, Joel Rosenblatt on drums, Glenn McClelland on keyboards, Ken Gioffre on sax and Dave Gellis on guitar. We all know Bo from his time as a contestant on the fourth season of American Idol. He was runner-up to Carrie Underwood! Carrie Underwood is some tough competition! That alone speaks of his singing. The rest of the members all have storied musical backgrounds dating back with Blood Sweat & Tears as far as 1985; they’ve collaborated with acts such as Chuck Negron from Three Dog Night, Roger Glover from Deep Purple, Paula Cole, Billy Joel, and Diana Ross.
With that type of history and music experience, their like an all-star ensemble! Although great concerts aren’t built on reputation alone, it’s hard to imagine these guys having an “off night.” Tonight was no exception! Glenn McClelland on keyboards was astonishing! He did these gospel style organ solos that were absolute show stoppers! I’d like to hear this guy on a real organ! The blend of everything from southern gospel to Latin jazz was really interesting. Ken Gioffre on sax did some eye popping solos as well. With Blood Sweat & Tears, it doesn’t matter what song their playing; it all sounds incredible!
Instrumentally, BS&T is as sound a band as I ever heard. Vocally, Bo Bice was the perfect accompaniment. His voice added a unique touch, he’s a very fitting addition. The Ides of March cover “Vehicle,” sounded awesome! Dave Gellis was great on guitar; this song is the ultimate fusion between rock and jazz; a great fit! Another great song was “Surreptitious.” It was a uptempo jazz instrumental; quite contrary to the title of the song it was very noticeable, in a good way. This band performed so well you just wanted to keep clapping throughout the entire performance.
I didn’t hear any sour notes from anybody all night! They were really, really good. I attended the concert based on the claim that their rock n rolls greatest horn band. They didn’t disappoint at all and I fully back that claim now having seen them live. Blood Sweat & Tears is the real deal, great talent; just unbelievably great talent!