Vanilla Fudge @ B.B. King Blues Club (10/7/2006)

In the annals of Rock & Roll History, there is a chapter of its own dedicated to the mighty Vanilla Fudge and this legendary Heavy Blues-based Rock band was touring once again and hitting the famous B.B. King Blues Club and Grill in Times Square.  On point for the PiercingMetal command would be our own Art Director Joe Kaufman and Skeleton Pete Parrella who handles the writing and photography duties while I caught up on some other things.

vanilla fudge logo

Artist: Vanilla Fudge
Venue: B.B. King Blues Club (New York, NY)
Opener: Barnaby Bye
Date: 10/7/2006
Label: Escapi Music

One of the advantages to living in New York City is not only the amount of great shows that come through town but for me in particular is that a visit to B.B. King Blues Club is just a casual walk up 42nd Street. The music fan in me prompts me to try and catch the classic bands whenever possible, especially when you learn that all the original members of the group are present. Recently, I had the pleasure of seeing a reunited Vanilla Fudge perform at the venue this site practically lives at to enjoy some truly classic Psychedelic Rock. It was the chance to see Carmine Appice (drums), Tim Bogert (bass), Vince Martell (guitar) and Mark Stein (keyboard/vocals) perform again on the same stage after so long an absence from doing so together. All members of the band sing as well, adding a certain fullness to the sounds being thrown down. The cool October night would find the band playing to a hometown sold-out crowd and judging by the abundance of gray hair and bald heads you could tell they are long time, highly loyal fans. It was also interesting to observe a fair amount of younger people in attendance, and whether they were family of the loyal fans, the band or just among the curious music aficionados attending – young or old NYC is always a lively bunch to perform in front of and a Saturday night crowd is ready to rock. Tonight the show would find Mark Stein not actually present, having been injured recently. In his place would be Bill Pascali who would do a great job of filling in for the musician.

Kicking off a set of classic Fudge covers mixed with Led Zeppelin songs was a kicking version of Zep’s “Rock and Roll”. The Fudge will be releasing an album of reworked Led Zeppelin songs in early 2007 (coming on Escapi Music). They continued with “Dancing Days” which found Carmine Appice singing and one of my personal Fudge favorites “Shotgun” – this is a funky jamming rocker with great harmony vocals between Bill and Tim Bogert. Bogert also belted out the main vocal lines and it should be known that all of the guys sing pretty well in addition to playing the hell out of their instruments. Over the course of the set both Carmine and Tim did solos which need to be seen to be best enjoyed. Another set highlight was Fudge’s psychedelic tour-de-force “Season Of The Witch”. If you are up for some well-played Classic Rock and Psychedelia catch one of the earliest innovators, Vanilla Fudge.

Footnote: Both Tim Bogert and Carmine Appice also perform in a reunited Cactus. This Blues-Based Hard Rock outfit recently released their first recording in thirty years entitled “V”, and its also available on Escapi Music. I recently reviewed both their appearance at this same venue and the CD so check them out to know the details. Mark Stein has also recovered from his injury and should be appearing at future Vanilla Fudge shows.

Set List:
1. Rock and Roll
2. Dancing Days
3. Shotgun
4. People Get Ready
5. Shes Not There
6. Black Mountain Way
7. Moby Dick
8. Tearing Up My Heart
9. Season of the Witch
10. Take me for a Little While
11. You Hanging On
12. You Can’t Do That

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