Jackie Venson got back from a successful tour of Europe to play an inspired set at the One 2 One last Sunday. Billed as a Midsummer Night’s Groove, she turned up the heat in South Austin, ably assisted by band mates Rudy Eccles, Rodney Hyder, Ray Prim, KJ Hines, and Kevin Prince. The Austin Am Statesman and the Austin Chronicle give good back stories on her classical piano training, Berklee college of music pedigree and her conversion to the blues, guitar that is.
She’s got several styles, more than one speed, a voice like honey and clearly enjoys playing as much as her band does. Always a sucker for a melodic, funky bass, Rudy Eccles did not disappoint. Veteran Austin musicians, Ray Prim and Rodney Hyder kept the groove going, while KJ Hines and Kevin Prince brought edge to When I Fall.
What struck me more than the packed, multi-age crowd and Jackie’s guitar pyrotechnics was the soul in her groove and in her lyrics. And the flow between the bass, her piano and guitar and the drums. Was it witchcraft?
The train has left the station, it’s all happening Now for Jackie Venson. See them soon, for they will blow you away.