from Marietta, GA
Lefty Collins and the No Mercy Band - unbelievable! It was one of the true honest to goodness great times of my life this past weekend in Gadsden, AL with Lefty and band and friends and more... Pete, J.P., Tood, and Lefty play a brand of music that is unique, which in itself is quite an accomplishment in this day of bands that sound like every other band. Saturday night in particular was as good as I have heard them with my own 2 ears. They were focused, relaxed, ready, willing, and very able to play some just beautiful music, with a little help in the middle from our own GB git-picker extraordinaire, Brent "whateverbluedadcallshim" Sibley. When this comes out in the spring (hopefully), take my word and get it. I promise you will love what you hear and more importantly what you feel coming from these men, who play every night from their very hearts and souls.
To Brent, Bluedad, Rusty, Donna, SistaBluz, Buppalo - I am glad we got to share this experience together like we did. I wish all of you who have heard them previously could have been there with us. It was the best.
On a personal note, I was privileged to spend most of 3 days hanging out with the guys and their entourage - Vancura sister Ellen and Vancura sister-in-law Suzanne - and it is the love they truly and deeply share for each other and for what they are doing as a band that was the best highlight for me. A better sense of group humor, good feelings, and genuine love I have not seen in a long time like that, if ever. There were group meals in one of the hotel rooms that became gatherings of a true family. Bluedad and Brent were there for some of it, too, and it was just amazing to feel the love and share the laughter. Thank you, fellas and gals, for allowing me to be part of your world for 72 hours like that - a real special segment of my life.
To the incomparable Johnny Sandlin and his assistants Jeremy and John - you guys are so cool to hang with, the highest levels of professionalism yet down to earth as one could be. I can't wait to hear the final results and mixes of the music I heard this past weekend. To Carl Weaver, who really does offer the best listening environment of any club I have ever set foot in, and to his great staff, particularly Maegan, I extend my most sincere thank you for allowing everyone to feel so at home over the weekend. Please support this venue, y'all. It really is quite a place.
We meet many people along the roads we travel. I count as the biggest and most revered treasures of my life being all the people I have met over the years who share my love of music, and particularly of Duane Allman and the Allman Brothers Band and all the extensions of that tree. Lefty, J.P., Pete, and Todd - I love you guys more than I can tell you. I hope the tapes turned out well, and thanks for letting an old bald-headed guy stand up and play with you last night to close it out!
Willie Howard (from Mayberryetta, a suburb of Hot'lanta)
Added: Wednesday, January 04, 2006
Reviewer: Lefty collins