Prog - - Take A Bow - JERRY EWING

There’s a slightly be­mused feel when Ed­die Job­son takes to the stage be­fore an ap­pre­cia­tive, if hardly packed, crowd in the cap­i­tal. On the one hand, peo­ple don’t re­ally know what they’re go­ing to get on stage tonight. On the other, some more proac­tive pro­mo­tion for the gig might not have gone amiss.

Job­son ap­pears first, seat­ing him­self behind his key­boards, and chat­ting with the au­di­ence in a mat­ter-of-fact fash­ion. He ad­mits there’s no real set prece­dent tonight, and he thought he’d start by chat­ting with the au­di­ence and telling sto­ries of his re­cently fallen com­rades, be­fore play­ing some of their mu­sic.

Job­son’s mix of na­tive north east via Los Angeles ac­cent seems to set­tle ev­ery­one, a few ea­ger pun­ters div­ing straight in with ‘the trainspot­ter ques­tion’ about what’s left in the ar­chives. His heart­felt rem­i­nis­cences of John Wet­ton, and trib­utes to Keith Emer­son, Greg Lake and Allan Holdsworth, are touch­ing.

The last time that this writer saw Job­son at this fine venue, he was with John Wet­ton as they per­formed a set largely made up of UK numbers. Tonight how­ever, pro­ceed­ings are, as pre-gig in­for­ma­tion sug­gested, very dif­fer­ent.

ELP’s Tril­ogy, per­formed by a solo Job­son, kicks off the mu­si­cal part of the evening. The sound em­a­nat­ing from just one man on stage is ter­rific, be­fore Bonilla joins, tak­ing the vo­cal lead on crim­son’s star­less And Bi­ble Black. Three UK numbers fol­low: ren­dezvous 6:02, In The dead Of The night and By The Light Of day, be­fore a short break, af­ter which Job­son’s vi­o­lin fi­nally ap­pears af­ter his own nos­tal­gia for a stri­dent solo.

Then it’s on with the show, for ELP’s Bitches crystal and crim­son’s Fallen An­gel, be­fore Bonilla helms the Keith Emer­son Band’s A Place To Hide. All of this is han­dled with hon­our and re­spect, be­fore From The Be­gin­ning and UK’s car­ry­ing no cross lead to an encore of Lucky Man, a re­spect­ful blast of Job­son keys round­ing things off.

You have to ad­mire both mu­si­cians for even dar­ing to put on such a show at short no­tice. And ap­plaud them for the stylish man­ner in which they per­form. A special night.

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