My first show writeup…..is suprisingly not technical death metal or progressive music! The photos on my phone turned out like crap, so I scavenged social media for better quality photos. This show was personal to me in a few ways…..my father started me out on guitar as a preteen around 10-12 years old give or take. Then, I took lessons from Mick Hayes himself before he started to blossom not locally but also nationally who’s acquired many credentials along the way. Don’t let his humble and respectful attitude fool you, he’s a fine musician. I owe the man an eternal debt for helping me increase my passion for playing guitar and music itself.
The event was not only fun and the Imagine Event Center’s debut show, but also a sad and somber realization of how music has changed. It costs lots of money, effort and time to put out physical copies of albums. New age technology has helped people stay in tune with digital versions and streaming services (Boo streaming!) yet steer folks away from buying CD’S. “Medley” is Mick’s last physical CD he is releasing that is a combination of his career so far into 2018 along with a handful of new songs. He has written and released so much music its a double album! Now lets chat about some fantastic musicians.
Shane Henry came out to Buffalo cross country from Los Angeles for this event! Unfortunately, the rest of his band couldn’t make the trip so he flew in as a solo act playing just himself. He’s a Blues/Pop/Soul artist with such a clean voice it complimented his music perfectly. A few days after the show, I popped in his latest album “Light In The Dark” I purchased at the show and it’s definitely a different sound full band compared to just Shane himself. To be honest, his music sounded as good on an acoustic than the recorded album! It was gritty and raw at times…….packed full of emotion to no end.
He went on to describe his journey quickly between a few songs as an Oklahoma boy moving to Los Angeles as an artist going from a laid back world to a busy place like California. He talks about the struggles of life and the fruits of his labor through his lyrics. To close out his set, Mick jumped on stage to jam with Shane on his lead single “Save Me” from Shane’s latest album which was one of many highlights of this fantastic evening.
His performance was great and highly suggest catching any of his shows. Please come back to Buffalo soon! We loved you!
You can buy music on Shane’s website and through all of the digital platforms as well.
Onto the main event….Mick Hayes!
He started off playing acoustically on a few of his originals. Mick’s lyrics and performances are always packed full of action and pure, raw emotion…..this included a lot more of that, and then some! Honestly, this had to be one of his career highlights if you ask me. There were even more treats in store for the evening, as well. The Friendship Baptist Choir joined Mick for a few songs they recorded with him for “Medley” including “Caroline” and “Get Your Heart Right”. Man, were their voices ever so beautiful and full of passion. We’re talking 15 to 20 people sang their hearts out, that’s a lot of great voices!
After a couple songs he then brought is band up and cranked out music from every moment of his career. Mick even moved down south to Atlanta for a few years before returning to Western New York. He has made friends and connections throughout his musical career from all over the nation. Mick might tell you different being a humble and grateful artist his voice was on point that evening.
The best way to describe Mick’s guitar playing is robust and entertaining. He puts feeling, emotion and his best foot forward every note and chords he hits. Mick means what he says and plays, which I wish more artists and guitar players did these days. The Buffalo blues/funk/soul legend ripped through song by song playing his heart out for this intimate show. He is one of the best things to come out of our small region of New York and am proud to say he’s represented us very well over the years. His work ethic is extremely impressive, to say the least.
He’s also recently infused some comedy into some of his newest tracks such as “Poor Mans Blues” and “Southern Fried Love Affair”. Most of his newest music is his classic blues rock sound, but still holds onto the funk and soul vibe on his other newest songs as well. I am just glad he played two of my favorite MH songs “For Realskis” a funk track and “Hard 2 Explain” an experimental and slightly progressive track that reminds you of Robin Trower occasionally.
If you like what you hear, please buy his music and the same can be said for Shane. With Mick discontinuing making CD’S the last remaining copies of “Medley” and his last album “Guitar&B” are still available with what’s left on his website. If you collect CD’S this is your opportunity before he runs out officially. You can also buy all of his music in many digital forms, as well.
Let’s also show a little love for Imagine Event Center as well. It’s a beautiful rustic look and beautiful bar to compliment the nicely sized stage as well. The awesome woodwork on the bar adds a very laid back emotion to their venue. I can’t wait to check out any other shows they have coming up. It’s a fresh look to the local music scene here in Western New York and wish them great success in their new endeavor!