I have said it before, people, and I will say it again and again: We are so blessed to have the kind of talent we have in Georgia, and to have the local venues where we can see them.
I was very mindful of that last night when we went to the newly reopened Darwin’s Burgers and Blues in Marietta to hear the Truett Lollis Trio. My friend Elizabeth Tull, who is not only one of the best drummers I know but has excellent taste in music, has been after me for weeks to go hear Truett Lollis perform. Elizabeth has never steered me wrong, and I’ve been anxious to visit Darwin’s, because when I was first getting into the blues scene I kept hearing about the place but I never got to go before it closed. So last night Ken and I happily took ourselves off to accomplish both goals at once. And I am so glad we did!
First of all, Darwin’s is a small club, but last night it had a very enthusiastic, packed crowd. The club is a labor of love for its blues-loving owner, Ernie Lodato, and it shows. Before the show started we ordered burgers and my designated driver had a diet Coke, but I had a Long Island Iced Tea. (We all know I did that just so I could tell you all what the drinks were like, right?) Ok, so the Long Island Iced Tea was perfect, and so were our burgers. You choose your own condiments and toppings and we got the ones with wing sauce and Ken got every available topping on his. They were definitely worth the $8 (including fries or tator tots) we paid.
Then, the Truett Lollis Trio came on. These guys are young..Truett Lollis has just turned 21..but they are more than good, they are grand! Seeing Lollis on guitar is very much like what it must have been like to see a young Eric Clapton or Stevie Ray Vaughan before he was discovered. He’s that good. In fact, he did “Mary Had a Little Lamb” and “Pride and Joy” and his performance and that of the band was stellar. HIs vocals are pleasing but it is the instrumental work that sets this band apart. These are electrifying, blues-rock players and the audience went wild the whole time we were there, screaming and stomping and having a marvelous time. For some tunes, Jeff Baker added an excellent harmonica part as a special guest of the band. Drummer Theron Peterson kept the beat steady while Jonathan Norwood provided flawless bass and Truett Lollis made every guitar he picked up wail, and sing, and howl. When the guitar and bass jammed together, it was magic.
When you consider how young Truett Lollis is, this band is bound to get better and better, although to be honest it is hard to see how they can improve very much from the level they are on now. Do yourself a huge favor and go out and see this band. You’ll be able to say you saw them back when, before they got famous!