Joe Marson descended on Rockwood Music Hall Thursday night along with his band with a powerhouse voice dripping with soul, and the band to back it up. Starting things off with his strongest instrument, Joe launched into his first song, thumping his chest and making various noises with his mouth, he captivated the crowd instantly. “This is going to be like lovemaking, we’ll start off slow, bringing in some acoustic guitar, then we’ll bring in the full band, then it will build, and build…” Joe was right. The night built up several layers, with his band adding on some of the most gorgeous harmonies and super-tight musicianship I’ve heard in a while.
Eager hands from the audience grabbed at the air for Joe’s newly minted t-shirts that he launched from the stage, behind the back, wedding bouquet style. Yelps of “YESSSSSSSSSSSSS!!” came from the crowd in fits of worship to the church service that was being thrown down on stage. Joe’s voice came across as totally effortless – quiet and subtle when needed, and forceful when necessary. He was also no slouch on the guitar either, reminding me a lot of Buddy Guy, his guitar dripped with emotion on every note.
His song “Here With Me,” inspired a full crowd sing a long, complete with clapping from the entire audience. You’d be hard pressed to find anyone texting while Joe was onstage. His voice and lyrics are soul-stirring, and even on his cover of Sam Cooke’s classic “Bring It On Home” that closed out the night, nothing seemed forced. Joe Marson definitely adds his own unique flair to his folk-rock/blues sound, and a show like this one is one that you’d wish you’d seen before he exploded.
Article by: Lesley Keller
Photos: Shayne Hanley