Dark Angel CD Review In Blues Magazine France – July 2012

Major Dark Angel Review in Blues Magazine – France – July 2012 – Available in Most Newsagents and Supermarkets Across France:
It’s good to hear albums whose roots you can really feel, and coming from the training of 7 musicians who have as many as 3 magnificent feminine creatures to sing, who lack neither charm nor voice, and even represent some of the best (last few words are as near a translation as we could find) on the scene. Once you’ve listened to this excellent treat, you will quickly realise that we’re in a blues rock vein of the best vintage, of which the longtime guitarist is inspired magnificently by the masters of the genre like Creedence, Clearwater Revival and Lynyrd Skynyrd.A few excursions into country and latin music like Carlos Santana (So Over You) are just

“The Maginificent Feminine Creatures”

are just as tasty, and always with this characteristic fibre that distinguishes this group.The 9th album contains some really nice nuggets like langourous Stormy Monday, a cover of the excellent Stormy Monday, a cover of the excellent TBone Walker where the very young voice of Maudie (Mandie?) excels and G Boner plays with an extreme sensitivity to the original. The recording is technically superb, and it’s a treat to hear all of this beautiful group in perfect balance.

Go on, treat yourself, some blues rock of this quality combining such sublime voices – you have to fill your ears with it without moderation.

Pierre Christ

Roadhouse Live at Millers – Kirkby – Thursday 19th April 2012

Great to return to this A list venue after a 3 year break. Our last gig there had been a stormer, with the place being maxed out on a lovely sunny day. this time the whole frame and context for this show was darker. The rain was crashing down and the wonderful Rob who runs this fantastic music club is unwell (we were so sorry to hear that)…

This time the crowd numbers were unfortunately down. However, in the context of a venue in an area with some of the highest unemployment in the Country, it was a great crowd. I some times get overwhelmed with how people love our music enough to either make long journeys to see us or are local but still have to find the £8.00 entrance fee.

Mandie & Gary rock the Skegness Festival

It was a historic and in some ways difficult gig for the Band as due to the increase in my own personal health isssues we have been playing less, and after this show are coming off the road for 3 months in order to facilitate my surgery on the 8th May. We plan to restart gigging in August.

We tried to hit the ground running on this gig and opened with ‘Too Tired to Pray’ followed by ‘Rainmaker’. The feedback at the half time break was that the sound for these first two numbers was deadful. Apparently, it improved for Ria and Mandie’s solo outings of the ‘Lying Game’ and ‘House of the Rising Sun’. Up to this point though vocally precise my lead playing had been poor, so I changed the set and we went into ‘All Along the Watchtower’ which featured some amazing playing from Danny. I used the song to play myself into guitar form (and was very proud of my solo). ‘No Place to Hide’ was spot on and from there the night turned into a really good one.

The second set was a blast and after the encore we were feeling totalled by the blast of energy required to play those songs. the great crowd at Millers would not let us away with that, and a second encore was demanded. After the traditional toast with the crowd we played a really good version of ‘Working Class Gospel Drinking Blues’, which now seems to be a regular second or third encore number. A really high energy performance by the whole Band.

Post performance I was knocked out by the amazing amount of people that wished me well for the forthcoming operation.  Its made me even more determined to come back stronger and complete a new CD which we would hope to release in 2013.

A good night, thanks again for your support







Roadhouse Live at the Hope Tavern, Holton Le Moor – 18/3/2012

A return to one of our fave venues and always a firm bastion of support for this Band. Graham the Govevernor is a top man, always booking top Bands and after 7 prior great gigs here we count him as a firm friend. After he filled us up with his excellent local fare in a blow out Hope Tavern lunch it was a later than usual transformation of this quiet Country Pub into excellent Blues/rock venue. In came the stage the wall hangings and then the famous Hope Tavern crowd.

The crowd here are so in your face that if you make a mistake you can see the reaction, so Rule one, try not to screw up!!!. Mothers Day had culled our usual size of crowd by about 20%, but it was still a strong turn out.

Roadhouse rocking at Skegness 2012

The first set was well played but plagued with sound problems. A perfect sound for the centre of the club was muffled at the back and the guitars were out of balance for the right hand side (apparently).

So the we applied the scientific solution, TURN IT UP!!!!!!
After a blistering second set that left half the Band deaf, loads of people came up and said that it was perfect and totally what they wanted (we just had to get them to write it down)…..
All the second set crowdpleasers were there, we just did not play ‘Dark Angel’ as I was just not in the mood forthat song.. sometimes I feel that the song plays me, only when it wants too, weird!
Rogers drum solo was really great, Bill was spot on in the second set (I could hear him then). The girls and Danny were both amazing.
We roll on in our 21st year….. towards the new CD, 3 songs are nearly completed, one was played at this gig…………Do not forsake us

Review of Dark Angel in Rock Society Magazine

What an absolute joy this CD this is. It’s rock, it’s roll, and at times it’s blues and it’s their eleventh CD. Eleventh?

Fronted by singer/ songwriter and excellent guitarist Gary Boner, who is more than ably supported by permanent cast of four including the superb female vocals of Mandie.G,. and aided by a further three women vocalists they have a winning line up. They rock their blues, but have a definite Skynyrd feel to them more Southern States than the UK where they hail from. Having said that, ‘So Over You’ could have been penned by Santana!

Gary rocking at Skegness! This is an excellent CD – varied and enjoyable throughout. ‘Swamp Girl’ is a stand out Americana, track for me, but it’s hard to choose one favourite over the eclectic mix of great self penned tracks on offer here.


Roadhouse Live At The Broadstairs Blues Bash (Festival) – 17/2/2012

It was great to be invited back to play at this great festival for the 2nd year running. Once more we were allocated the largest of the pub venues The Wrotham Arms, for our appearance on the festivals opening night. It was great to see the Landlady Jackie again. I must say a massive thanks to Geoff and all the lads who came down from the Beaverwood in Chislehurst, who helped make this happen.

The Girls just after coming off stage at this years Skegness Festival

Last years crowd was so rammed in that the people could not get to the toilets or the bar. Numbers were down a little this year, so the beers were flowing. It was still a terrific crowd and I love playing this festival as the people are literally on stage with you, the crowd starting just behind the monitors……

We played a very nice ‘Dark Angel’ and Rogers Drum solo in ‘Voodoo Queen’ was fantastic. At the end the crowd would not let the band stop playing as the encores went on and on. In the end it was a hard driving version of ‘ Working Class Gospel Drinking Blues’, that sent everyone happily on thir way home.
Wouldn’t it be great if we made it 3 in a row next year.
Thank you Geoff
 Keep on rocking

Roadhouse Live at the Malt Shovel – Northampton – 15/2/2012

Our first gig at the famous Wednesday night live music sessions at the Malt Shovel. Mike has been running these for years and every major name on the circuit seems to be playing this great venue.

The space restictions meant that ot monitors had to be at the side and behind us and this lead to a few faux pas and dropping of the proverbial ball. All were guilty, but my personal fave was Danny’s  ‘ jazz’ intro to the Lying Game.  However, this makes it sound like it was a bad gig and this really was not the case. There was a real energy to the Band and the second set was once more on fire. The pub has a big Wednesday night audience which we unusually augmented with over 20 people who were running a JAKS/Skegness ‘reunion’. A big thanks to them and their cheers drove the band on.

'Danny's coming to getcha'

We alienated 4or 5 of the venues Blues ‘Nazis’, but the rest of the crowd were with us big time and it was comfortably into ‘Voodoo Queen’ and the encore ‘Preacher Man’. A massive thanks to Jim Soars out Publicist who helped us get this gig and came down and gave his support. Also to the 20 or so Roadhouse supporters who travelled over a wide range of distances to give us their support on a Wednesday night in Northampton. Much respect, we keep on rocking because of you.

We should be back here next year


Roadhouse Live At The Skegness National Festival of Blues & Rock – 29/1/2012

The Sunday at this great festival saw the doors of the intimate (approx 500 capacity) JAKS venue being opened for the first time.

We were the first Band to open the night with a peakish 8.30-10.00pm slot. With both Centre and Reds stages in full swing, I had (when negatively minded) visions of us playng to about 2o-30 people. However, our friends and supporters did us proud and we had an excellent turn out. We lost a few people at the time the Feelgood’s were going onto Centre Stage (but at least theyd seen half the set) and then a small amount more when the venue ran out of bitter (what a festival crowd – drank em dry), but overall it’s a massive thanks to all our friends who turned out for us and the support of live music in JAKS (well done Alan Pearce and Blues Matters) on the night.

The Roadhouse Chorusline!

Storming into ‘Tellin Lies’, we played a high energy set, that peaked in various numbers including ‘Voodoo Dance’ and our well regarded cover of the ‘Roadhouse Blues’.  My fave moment was playing ‘Dark Angel’, where we had a few decent shouts for us to play the song and we were able to oblige.  It was one of those nights where I managed to ‘deliver’ on the guitar solo and as the song powered into its climax, it was a time to enjoy the sweat the lights and the atmosphere, even from on on stage perspective.

Weirdest thing about that version was that when we hit the second verse my mind went a blank (nothing new there many of you would cry), but the fact that I managed to invent a new verse totally in the context of the song and arguably a better one than the actual recorded verse was very strange. At the end I wondered whether I’d dreamt it when only last week photographer/journalist Steve Dulieu asked me why and how I’d done it … the brains a funny thing, especially mine!

As for the Band, wed got used to Roger playing behind his perspex barrier and the sound separation which had induced a couple of ‘drop the trapeze’ moments on the Saturday, was dealt with (he was let out at the end with promises of future good behaviour).

Overall, Bill and Roger played it really well while Danny was on a blinder. Mandie got to sing/blast out  ‘Play With Fire’ and Suzie bluesed (is that a word?) it up with her album version of ‘ Stormy Monday’

Danny and Bill get on down at JAKS

At the end it was great to be able to play Preacher Man to our friends and watch people go crazy in the ‘Freebird’ section. The man behind the stage, Mr BM , Alan Pearce (who recieved a wedding anniversary dedication) watched the whole set and it was fantastic to see the planner who put it all together be delighted with the delivery…….

Welcome to 2012…..


Roadhouse Live At The Skegness National Festival of Blues & Rock – 28/1/2012

Our first contribution to the Skegness festival (which was sold out this year) was to play our traditional pre jam session set. It was great to see so many people in the venue early on the Saturday afternoon. And the whole set was played to fantastic support from the crowd. We opened with a storming ‘Too Tired To Pray’ (out of the 8 songs put up by people on Youtube, this is the one I’ve had put in the video section of this website).

Ria's debut on the Skegness Stages  Ria Hallwood made an excellent Skegness debut, impressing many people with her great tone. It was great to have Suzie.D back in what was a 3 girl line up. Suzie always gives the vocals a professional smoothness and musiciality, great job. The picture I’ve put up here by the talented photographer Steve Dulien, gives a real sense of the great atmosphere of the afternoon.

One of the highlights of the set was the debut of the new song ‘I Can’t Say No’ (which is not an autobiographical lament – honestly!). We’ve great hopes for the song!!!

After an encore we were into the jam and at this point there was the biggest crowd I’ve ever seen in JAKS. the que to talk to me and sign up for the jam went from the merchandise table across the stage area and close to the entrance. In a mad 10 minute spell, I managed to sign up over 40 great

The Roadhouse Ladies - 'Its the jam and we can have a rest'

musicians.  Over 65 people played in the jam and the overall talent and standard of playing was great. Far too many people to mention all, but it was great to see Carlos play so well. Gizmo made a great contribution to two sets and Sharon from the Blues Bar in Harrogate delivered her great version of ‘Stormy Monday’. It was lovely to get Maggie back up on stage, especially as she had delivered a great set on that stage on the Friday night. Also Sue of BBC fame delivered some vocals that were straight from the soul. The fact that there were 7 harp players kept me on my organisational toes, but I’m pleased to say that by the end all but less than a handful of people got to play.

So many people came up to me over the weekend and told me how the jam was the pinnacle of the festival for them. I am so proud of how many people really have come to love it so much. As long as we have the invitation Roadhouse and I will carry on running the jam as we believe in giving something back to the people.

What a great afternoon


Roadhouse At The Famous Monday Night Blues Club – Mon 19/12/2011

It was an honour and a priviledge to play as the House Band at Philip Guy Davies annual Xmas extravaganza. This great club, run at the back of the Bullingdon in Oxford stares down the rescession and puts on top class music on Monday nights.

We were orginally scheduled to play this event in 2010, but the artic conditions put paid to that idea. This time out we were just fighting against residual December dampness. First we played a really ‘Go fo it’ styled first hour. We opened with Tellin Lies and blasted our way through a very well received 60 minutes, complete with encore.

The format then changed to us providing back line and whatever musical support was required to an entire array of talent that Philip had put together. It was great to see first hand the much vaunted Cherry Lee Mewis (most of the Band going on to catch her set at JAKS in the Skegness festival). Also on the play list were our own legends Jules & Lorna. They dynamic duo were well backed by Bill & Roger and were on top form. I only have to here the tone of that slide guitar and the force of that voice and a whole tribe of memories come running back, top notch stuff…..

On tour in Holland

The amazing 3rd Degree Le Burn toted some amazing guitar and there were other great musicians there to numerous to mention.

I managed to MC the whole thing to finish on time (Just about!). I think all there had one to remember!

A great night


Success at the Major Skegness Festival 2012

Skegness 2012 was a major succes for the Band….

We played an opeining set before the jam to a large crowd in ‘JAKS’ and received an amazing response. In the words of DJ /Critic and all round live blues man, Clive Rawlings, “Thats the best I’ve ever seen you”

We/I then ran the Festival Jam Session. The jam itself was amazing this year, with the que for signing up to play stretching nearly across the whole venue. The quality of what people did at the JAM was exceptional and it was without doubt the biggest crowd I’ve ever seen in JAKS. A major thanks to the Butlins staff and especially the soundcrew who were outstanding under the pressure of all the multiple change overs. So many people came up over the course of the festival weekend and said the Jam is the event of the weekend for them. There was even a rumour that I amy not be running one next year, the answer to that is while there is breath in my body and Roadhouse are on the bill, I will keep on running the Jam….its so great to bring musicians together in that way…

Festival Energy

Finally  JAKS was opened for the first time on a Sunday night.  An amazing thanks to Alan Pearce and all at Blues Matters for arranging  great music the entire w/nd at JAKS and securing live music there on a Sunday.

I feared a small crowd but so many thanks to you all for a massive turn out. We lost a few people when the Feelgoods came onto Centre Stage and a few more when the venue had a blip in its supply of bitter. However a monumental 90 minute set flew by and in the end I had to miss out 2 songs. We only repeated one song from the Saturday performance and I felt proud of ust how well the entire band played and sang.  Thanks for being there, so many of you…. YOU PEOPLE ARE AMAZING AND WE’LL PLAY ON BECAUSE OF YOUR GREAT SUPPORT.

Full gig reports to follow across this weekend