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Jeff Beck: Performing This Week… Live at Ronnie Scott’s Jazz Club

At 64, Jeff Beck has gone from the young guitarist who admitted trying to keep up with Jimi Hendrix to the guitarist Hendrix might’ve become if he’d survived. Despite several recording lulls over 45 years, Beck has crafted a singular sub-genre anchored in rock, blues, jazz and reggae. In 2007, he gave an overview at Ronnie Scott’s Jazz Club in London with keyboardist Jason Rebello, bassist Tal Wilkenfeld and drummer Vinnie Colaiuta. This CD and a forthcoming DVD document the performances.

The CD opens with the Jimmy Page-penned, Yardbirds-era “Beck’s Bolero,” then shifts into a medley of John McLaughlin’s “Eternity’s Breath” and Billy Cobham’s “Stratus.” Beck gets warmed up by the latter, finally keeping pace with Colaiuta, one of the few who could keep up with the wide stylistic range of stellar drummers (Narada Michael Walden, Richard Bailey, Terry Bozzio, Simon Phillips) Beck has employed. Wilkenfeld plays a beautiful solo on the ballad “‘Cause We’ve Ended as Lovers,” and mimics Jan Hammer’s keyboard intro on the funky “You Never Know.”

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