Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Andre Williams / The Flash Express – Beauty Bar, Las Vegas 7-1-07

A Sunday night gig in Las Vegas is a tough one for us – especially when a show runs in Las Vegas time!

We left our house around 11:00pm, made a stop along the way, and by the time we got across town to the Beauty Bar, we found out that only one of the four bands had gone on and we waited probably another ½ hour before the second band played. I’m not sure what the logic behind this practice of incredibly late shows is, but everyone that we talked to – audience and band members – complained about this. Though everyone that we know is older, so that might have something to do with it! On the other hand, a good portion of the audience left long before the headliner went on, which seems self-defeating for the club.

In any case, we were pleasantly surprised when we arrived and found Jimmy James (ex-Hangmen, Eagle, Comatones) in the crowd and found out that he has reunited with fellow-ex-Comatone guitarist Brian Waters in the mighty Flash Express!

It’s been several years now since we’ve seen the Express, but they are still as powerful as ever and the addition of Jimmy on second guitar adds another dimension! I can never argue with 2 super lead guitarists!

Drummer Lance Porter is a monster driver and a blast to watch! Brian is still a wildman leading the band with shouts, leaps and dance moves! They blast through a set of rock’n’soul, with hints of James Chance, Billy Childish, high-energy blues and the MC5, though, unlike many current bands referencing these influences, these cats are all amazing players.

The set consisted of a number of songs from their CD, “Introducing the Dynamite Sound of the Flash Express”, like “Ride the Flash Express” and “Who Stole the Soul”. If you haven’t seen this combo on any of their many tours, check ‘em out the next time they’re nearby! You won’t be sorry!
Andre Williams is another wildman who has been making records since the 1950’s and is showing no sign of stopping! His great early tunes like “Bacon Fat” and “Greasy Chicken” were revived by the Cramps and he now tours the world with young r’n’r bands backing him up – as the Flash Express did this night. His voice is a little rough these days but he still puts on a dynamic show and looks amazing while doing it! He is still sex-obsessed and will flirt with every lady in the house, but does it with class and style. He seemed willing and happy to talk with any fan that came up to him, as well.

He is slowing down now – and at 70, I can’t blame him as he is doing more than I can these days! I don’t expect him to keep doing this for long, so see this legend while you can! You won’t be sorry!
Check out the Flash Express's My Space page here and Andre Williams' page here.
(Photo by Melanie Coffee)


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