Stevie Ray Vaughan tears it up in Vancouver, says “serious trouble indeed”


mila geran photo


By Steve Newton

Since he flew onto the international music scene in 1983, people have been raving on and on about Texas guitar wizard Stevie Ray Vaughan. After his startling shows at the Commodore last week (August 29 and 31), you can bet that local blues-rock fans will be doing the same for some time to come.

It was Stevie’s third visit to Vancouver, having headlined the Commodore last year, and opened for (believe it or not) Men at Work at the Coliseum the year before that. It was also his finest show yet, due in large part to the addition of keyboardist Reese Wynans to his band, Double Trouble (now the group is getting known as “Triple” Trouble).

With the formidable backing of ex-Johnny Winter bassist Tommy Shannon and drummer Chris “Whipper” Layton, Wynans and Vaughan traded stirring, go-for-broke solos on such SRV favourites as “Love Struck Baby” and “Pride and Joy” (from Stevie’s debut LP Texas Flood), “Cold Shot” (from last year’s Couldn’t Stand the Weather), as well as material from an upcoming third LP, Soul to Soul.

Vaughan played for a solid two hours, during which time he wowed the crowd by playing behind his back, above his head, and all over the place. At one point he strolled off the front of the stage and across a few tables, where he pulled off the Hendrix trick of playing with his teeth.

His set also included “Voodoo Chile”, and an encore performance of “Angel”, which ended with a barrage of raucous noise worthy of Jimi himself. When Vaughan threw his axe to the ground and headed off stage he nodded at the crowd, tipped his wide-brimmed hat, and said “Serious trouble indeed.”

He wasn’t lying.


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