December catch-up: Jungle Show returns; Wicked Lo-Down gets hot

The year is winding down, but there is still plenty going on of interest to fans of The Red Devils Expanded Musical Universe.

Here’s what you need to know:

All-star Jungle Show back at Antone’s

The iconic Antone’s nightclub in Austin, Texas, again transforms into a hip tiki bar with the return of the now-traditional Jungle Show for three big shows Dec. 27, 28 and 29.

Onstage for the 8th annual throwdown will be a whipcrack all-star roster with Billy F. Gibbons on vocals, guitar and sometimes harmonica; Red Devils guitarist Mike Flanigin on the B-3 and vocals; Jimmie Vaughan and Sue Foley on guitars and vocals, and Chris “Whipper” Layton powering the show on drums.

This jungle’s roots go back to 2016, when Gibbons was asked to induct B.B. King into the Austin City Limits Hall of Fame. Gibbons and Flanigin needed to pick a King song to play in tribute, and they selected an obscure cut, “The Jungle.”

They liked it so much that they decided to do it again, this time at Antone’s, and with a supergroup of friends (Vaughan, Foley and Layton).

We went to The Jungle Show several years ago, and it was an amazing experience. The winter weather in Texas was mild, the club was packed and the music was outstanding! We also brought back one souvenir: An unlabeled golden cassette, with a tracklist curated by Billy F. Gibbons himself, one blues classic after another. (One tip: It’s general admission, so get there early.)

It appears tickets are still available for all three shows (if not on Ticketmaster, then on secondary ticket sites). It is well worth a trip for a guaranteed musical feast, as well as barbecue and Tex-Mex and all the other pleasures one can find in Austin.


Wicked Lo-Down release ‘We Hot’

A year after the release of his debut solo album and Paul Size is back with another record, this time the hard-charging “We Hot” by his new group, The Wicked Lo-Down.

It’s a driving blues-rock frenzy that should be comforting to Red Devils fans. But they aren’t one-trick ponies: The Wicked Lo-Down have real songs, and surprises at almost every turn.

I won’t have time for a full review, but on initial listen, Size is in fine form, outlaying signature licks in a fresh context. The record has a lot of musical ideas in common with the Paul Size/Jonny Moeller platter, “Return of the Funky Worm.”

Pick up the album for your own collection at The Wicked Lo-Down’s Bandcamp site.


Happy Blue year!

The Blue Shadows — Javier Matos, John Bazz (Blasters) and Bill Bateman (Red Devils, Blasters, Cramps) — are gigging around California this month. They end the year with a New Year’s Eve romp Dec. 31, 2022, at the World Famous Doll Hut in Anaheim, Orange County, California. Also on the bill: the Mike Eldred Trio.

Those on the West Coast should take note of this show!


Top photo: The Jungle Show band: Billy F. Gibbons, left, Jimmie Vaughan, Chris Layton, Sue Foley and Mike Flanigin.

Published by J.J.

Drums and barbecue ribs. Blues music.

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