Tuesday, 31 January 2012

John Walker Tribute Evening at Arden Hall, Castle Bromwich


Cynthia Maus, widow of the late great John Walker, flew from her home in Los Angeles to witness a marvellous evening of music and memories held in tribute to her husband John Walker who sadly passed away on May 7th 2011.

The band Jog the Memory opened up the show with a raft of songs which included many favourites of John’s including “Sweet Dreams", which was one of John Walker's own songs and then Cochran’s “Twenty Flight Rock” had the audience rocking before changing the tempo to Dylan’s “Mr Tambourine Man” and “All or Nothing” by The Small Faces. This was followed by a variety of well known standards before wrapping up their set with a medley of songs by The Kinks.

Handing the stage over to another friend of John’s, Marmalade star Sandy Newman quickly had the audience in his hand with a beautiful collection of songs from his album “Golden Years” which included the moving “Blind Man” and “Hold Me”.

“Back on the Road”, “God Only Knows” and a collection of Beatles classics were solidly performed before finishing his set with a beautiful rendition of “Norwegian Wood”.

The Dakotas, now fronted by Ronnie Ravy, toured and performed many times with John. They opened up with a Waler Brothers classic "Make It Easy On Yourself", before rocking it up with “Let the Good Times Roll”.

A medley of original Dakotas’ songs were performed with the audience joining in singing every word.

Dedicated to John was a superb rendition of “Unchain My Heart” which brought the audience to their feet and wrapped up the first half of the show.

Following the break Alan Lovell, Tony Crane and Geoff Turton all backed by the Dakotas had the audience rocking and dancing in the aisles as they belted out hit after hit. “You’re No Good”, “That’s Alright Mamma”, “Mr. Moonlight”, “Sorrow”, “Blackberry Way”, they could have performed all night and we would have stayed with them.

Their combined talent and showmanship drew applause after applause from an appreciative audience before concluding with the now famous Number 1 hit UK hit for the Walker Brothers, “Sun Ain't Gonna Shine Anymore”.

Cynthia could not have wished for a finer tribute to John.

Was John listening? Cynthia, he was there.

Presented by BeeBee Productions and Associates a Truly Gala Night.

Barry Wiltshire

2 comments:

The Dakotas said...

Thanks for the lovely write up on the Dakotas' charity night for John Walker.
A couple of points though ...
The Dakotas opened up with "MAKE IT EASY PN YOURSELF" by the Walker Bros and not "Breaking up is hard to do" by Neil Sedaka.
Also, Jog the Memory did a tribute to John Walker with one of his own songs, "Sweet Dreams" - NOT "Sweet Dreams of you by Don Gibson.

Regards

The Dakotas.

Spaghetti Editor said...

Thanks guys

Changes made above.

Pete Millington