Material: Tab Benoit is an artist singing and playing rock & roll, blues, country and a combination of all three mixed with assorted good vibes, licks, progressions and melodies from old to new. Each song is arranged to appeal to all three genres at once. Country songs with rock & roll appeal, blues songs that sing about the heart’s angst when a relationship goes awry (stopping just short of your dog getting run over by a truck), rock & roll songs with such soulful, beautifully placed riffs that only seasoned and well marinated musicians can conjure. All the songs are executed in great taste and arranged with superb craftsmanship from the covers to the originals and from beginning to end.
Musicianship: Benoit is a superb guitar player who takes his audience for a joyride like no other. Having great skills is an understatement as he pulls out every lick available to him from his already diverse and sundry repertoire. He wields his ax, chopping and shredding everything in sight. He is very well versed in rock & roll and blues licks, then adds them to graceful blues and country progressions and—BAM—it’s instantly appealing. It doesn’t hurt to have a rhythm section comprised of a very talented and unselfish drummer and bass player. Duplechin and Higgins pretty much pulled out all the stops, dancing, posing and gave Benoit the stage and said, “Do it!” And he did. He lit his fretboard afire and went to town. Except for a few moments of spotlight on each of them, the rhythm section pretty much sat back and played in the pocket and that’s what Benoit needed to put this show over the top.
Performance: Exceptional. Not a still body in the place. Everyone was dancing, toe-tapping or shakin’ what the good Lawd gave them; and that was just the music. The lighting and sound guys were on point. Beautiful, well-placed lighting effects and a perfect sound mix was more than Benoit could ask for and it pushed him over the top (not too shabby for a small club). Funny at times, as he spoke of his hometown, then serious, it didn’t matter; he telling his stories through exceptional guitar work and with a little help from his friends.
Summary: Duplechin covered Sainte Rock with a cloud of bass for about two hours on this cool, cloudy autumn night and that was enough time for Benoit’s guitar and Higgins’ drums to cut through it like butter and set the table for the fans. That being stated, it’s no wonder Benoit was just recently inducted into the Louisiana Folk Life Center, Hall of Master Folk Artists. He is also a dynamic environmental activist who was featured in the documentary Hurricane on the Bayou. This was definitely one of the best shows of 2019 and a must-see for all you music fans. Don’t miss Tab Benoit or the movie.
Players: Tab Benoit, guitar, vocals; Corey Duplechin, bass, vocals; Terrance Higgins, drums