Monday 3rd September 2007 - DONGEN (Holland) - Ex-Stone Mick Taylor is a real diesel engine for the blues.
The 21st season of the Blues Promotion Dongen got off to a great start. "De Gouden Leeuw"[the venue - translated means the Golden Lion] consisted yesterday of 20 golden blues fingers, property of the Irish blues singer Barry McCabe (ex-Albatross) and the English guitarist Michael Kevin Taylor, better known as Mick who used to play with John Mayall's Bluesbreakers and The Rolling Stones.
Some of the audience could hardly believe it - a genuine member of The Stones playing in a club in Dongen. To ask him why he left the Stones is one of the silliest questions you could ask him. Because for the past 30 odd years he's been active on other fronts and able to play exactly the style of music he feels like playing - and in his characteristic style of long but interesting solos. His style/music is timeless and forever. Plus, he can live a normal lifestyle. He can walk the streets, have a beer and play wherever/whenever he feels like it. Somehow I don't see his mates Keith & Mick doing that, without at least ten security people and the ensuing circus that goes with it!
No, leaving The Stones after having made seven albums with them in the early seventies seems to me to be the best decision the now slightly-heavier man ever made. In Dongen, the man who's played with Little Feat, Mike Oldfield, Alvin Lee, Eric Clapton and Bob Dylan blended himself in nicely with the slightly Celtic and more Rock leanings of his part time-companion and friend Barry McCabe. In turn the duo played their songs, not because of any egos but because the music matters most to these two men. McCabe is clearly the better rocker of the two but Taylor is the real blues engine of the machine.
It didn't matter if it was a sort of gospel boogie from the John Mayall time, a cover from Robert Johnson from the 1920's or Bob Dylan's Blind Willie McTell (which included the subtle inclusion of a few bars from Layla from Derek & The Dominos), when Taylor got going on the slide he hit some real high points. Honky Tonk Women got the best reaction, one of The Stones' songs that would never have sounded the way it did if Taylor hadn't played on it. McCabe played the role of Mick Jagger for the occasion and the couple of hundred fans in Dongen played the role of the singalong crowd in the Feyenoord stadium. The most interesting songs were the longer, slow ones, where the band members knew where they were going but didn't know where it was going to end. The Golden Lion slowly became a sauna as the show progressed but still that didn't stop the many fans waiting around to get an autograph long after the show had finished.
Review of live concert in Dongen, Holland...with Mick Taylor