Doogie White with La Paz
Maggie's Chambers, Edinburgh July 16, 2010
The Edinburgh gig for Doogie and La Paz was at Edinburgh's Maggie's Chambers, located in Edinburgh's historical old town. A very pleasant venue, low ceiling, small stage, very intimate feel with candle light in alcoves with comfy leather sofa's.
The format for this gig the same as the last outing in Edinburgh, a free charity gig, with 3 local bands plus Doogie and La Paz. It's worth noting that Doogie and La Paz and all the bands involved do these gigs without any payment, which is all credit to them. This really is for the enjoyment of playing their music and for the benefit of the fans who want to hear it.
The support bands were Altered Sky, Fireproof Match and The Last Tree, basically 2 young bands and some older players all giving a good mixture of music.
There were some initial equipment problems and speaking to the organisers it became clear the whole gig had suffered problems from the offset. The original plan was to hold the gig in the Ark, like last time, it was allbooked but the Ark went bust and didn't tell anyone, so this left the organisers, Imported Instruments, less than 10 days to find and sort a substitute venue, which they had did with Maggie's Chambers. Then on arrival at Maggie's Chamber it transpired that the resident sound man had been run-over by a car and so not at work today and nobody understood the computerised sound desk!! The venue were frantically sourcing a replacement sound man. So all in all almost the gig that didn't happen!
To the show.....due to the technical problems with the DIY sound system, the show was about an hour behind schedule, but they seemed to make up the time by cutting support slots shorter and having fast changeovers.
Proceedings were kicked off by Altered Sky, fronted by an excellent female singer, all original songs in the vein of Avril Lavigne/Paramore, upbeat, catchy, basically good tunes, played well with strong and interesting vocals. Next up Fireproof Match, fronted by an excellent female vocalist! Am I seeing double here or drunk as usual? Well no, Fireproof match have also have an excellent female singer, this time not so much the Avril Lavigne/Paramore crossover but maybe similar. This band play a set of originals, which are heavier and rockier than Altered Sky, again played well and on the money for the vocals. Next in, The Last Tree, this time sporting their regular drummer and not a female singer! They play a set of originals which is a mix of almost country tunes with a rock lead across the top, some catchy tunes and interesting playing. Thereafter the charity raffle was drawn with some lucky chap wining a Stratocaster and another a Uke!
Waiting in the wings ..................The Manic Messiah himself.............Mr Doogie White.
Doogie and La Paz kick off and remembering the difficulties with the sound system I wasn't expecting what came, but there it was, clear as a bell and absolutely awesome, La Paz sounded heavy, thick, solid, a really great sound and over the top of it crystal clear there were Doogie's vocals, they were immense, simply immense. Doogie's voice appeared to be in absolutely top form and his distinctive style shines through here as ever. Again this is a small venue and yet you could be watching this band playing an arena sized gig. Doogie commands the stage and audience with his presence and he has "that presence", a quiet confidence gained from years of experience and from simply being master of his craft. Chic McSherry carves out the guitar parts, wringing the notes from his guitar and doing serious justice to the Blackmore legacy and then showing us how he plays on their original La PAZ numbers. All round Chic is a great performer.
They played a new song which I think is either yet to be recorded, or perhaps they said they just recorded it, but it was really well constructed and superbly executed. As ever the solid, tight engine room of La Paz, Paul and Alex are working brilliantly together and never miss a beat. Paul is twirling the sticks mid-fill and Andy adds all the keyboard flourishes to round off the sound. The set was a mixture of Rainbow/Purple, La PAz and other Doogie related work. The LA PAZ songs both new and old are really well written and have a real life and energy about them. These guys really need to get an album out and let people hear what they are capable of, it's top stuff. Also I'd really like to see these guys play on a bigger stage sometime too, I think they would be simply immense given a little more room to play with. Up close they are well impressive and entertaining.
Doogie payed tribute to the late Ronnie James Dio during the show and they played Temple of the King and Stargazer in memory of Ronnie. It was a nice touch and greatly appreciated by the audience. In some ways this showed a side to Doogie that might not normally be seen, he spoke fondly about Ronnie who will be sadly missed by all, touching stuff.
The show drew to a close and without encores, this time the gig gremlins, who had tried their best to stop this gig, now attacked the bands own gear! Incredibly Chic's guitar amp was failing and Alex bass amp gave up and died, unbelievable but true! So sadly it was shorter show than they had intended to play, but nonetheless a really great night overall. Again La PAZ's playing was so tight it was hard to believe they only do this occasionally just now. Doogie's vocals.............well this is now several times I've seen Doogie in these small venues with La PAZ, each time I come away from the gig thinking yes this guy really can sing and has his own distinctive voice and does he ever.............. YES he does.
The night draws to a close with the chance for a quick chat with Doogie, Chic and the band. As usual Doogie and Chic are as affable and relaxed as ever. Paul the drummer is one of the best drummers I've seen and yet he's as humble as they come, all in a days work here. Alex on bass is worried about his amp and Andy is packing up his keys but they are happy to chat and very approachable. They have all had a good night and enjoyed it, the charity has raised some much needed cash, the organisers made a silk purse from a sows ear as far as possible and it will be eyes down for the next outing for them in Glasgow the next night and perhaps back in Edinburgh later in the year(whooo hooo!)
Heading into the Edinburgh night, it's warm, there are loads of people out enjoying the evening and overall it's been another great night with La Paz.
Thanks again guys.
Review by Scorpioxxs