Charlie Wooton is a versatile guy. Last time we saw him was with Zabadodat with Laura Reed and it was all jazzy and tropical vibes. This time, it was The Charlie Wooton Project and it was blues and funk..We enjoyed both but Saturday night’s show was my favorite.
With Daniel Groover on bass,Mike Phillips on drums, Wooten on bass and vocals and special guest Australian guitarist James Southwell, the band created a wall of sound. For the second set, Rafael Pareira joined in on percussion and added another layer to the wall.
Things started out with a couple of funky, jazzy instrumentals and then Wooten said, “This is a blues club and we are going to play some blues numbers tonight, I promise.” He lived up to that promise with “Make Me A Pallet on The Floor,” and we got to hear not only the great blues jamming but his very pleasant vocal. The crowd was thoroughly engaged from the first and it didn’t take long until people were up and dancing.
It was all funk and blues from then on. At one point, Southwell took the lead and proved Australians can deliver the blues not only with stellar guitar but vocally as well.
Right before the break, Wooton started a very familiar bass riff. and before you know it, everyone was singing :Come together-right now- over me.” “Come on,” Wooteon urged. “I can do this all night.” And for a while it seemed like we all might.as the division between musicians and crowd disappeared in one of those magic moments when it does, indeed, all come together.. That was my favorite moment, when the genius of Wooton, one of the best bass players I have ever heard, and that of his great musicians, merged with the lasting genius of John Lennon to let us all shine.
The crowd was still buzzing and everything was in full swing when we reluctantly left. (Darwin’s show’s end late!) But we were there long enough to assure you that The Charlie Wooton Project was an unqualified success Saturday at Darwin’s! Can’t wait to see what Wooton does net!