The thrill is NOT gone! B.B. King’s Blues Band featuring Tito Jackson treated Lake Tahoe fans to a extraordinary night at the MontBleu Resort Casino & Spa Theatre. The five-piece horn section made the concert special.
The warm memories of the King of Blues permeated the venue from the opening song, “Let the Good Times Roll.” Bass player Russell Jackson sang the lead and he has mastered the same inflections and cadence as B.B., add to the authenticity. Jackson was equally good on both electric and stand-up bass.
Trumpet player James “Boogaloo” Bolden has played in King’s band for 35 years and stepped out front to sing “Big Boss Man.” You can’t help but like Bolden and his infectious personality. The entire band clearly enjoyed performing together and getting the audience involved. Guitarist Jesse Robinson was solid and Eric Demmer lit up the room with his sax solos.
The band played a full set before introducing Rock & Roll Hall of Famer Tito Jackson. One of Michael Jackson’s older brothers, Tito showed good blues chops on his Gibson. Jackson also sang lead and shared some of his memories of B.B. King.
Fans will be happy to hear that plans are in the works to keep B.B. King’s Blues Band together and performing across the nation. Prominent blues guitarists including Taj Mahal, Kenny Neal, Joe Louis Walker and Kenny Wayne Shepherd have recorded an album with the band. Another tour is in the works with different guitarists taking turns headlining the show for a couple of weeks at a time, similar to Tito Jackson on the current tour.
— Conrad Buedel