AFICIONADOS of Burton’s most fabled music venue are preparing for another monster reunion gig — boasting a big-name headline double bill.
Organisers of last year’s 76 Club 50th anniversary at Burton Town Hall were so pleased with the success of last year’s event they decided to do it all again this year, to mark the defunct High Street venue’s 51st birthday.
Headlining at this year’s gig, to be held at the same venue on Saturday, October 20, is Geno Washington and the Ram Jam Band, who organisers had originally hoped would play at last year’s event.
Washington, perhaps best known for being the subject of the Dexy’s Midnight Runners hit Geno, first came to the UK in the 1960s while stationed here with the US Air Force, and went on to achieve icon status on the R&B scene with his band and as a solo artist.
Also appearing at the Town Hall will be highly-rated Essex R&B singer James Hunter, who has appeared on BBC show Later With Jools Holland and counts Van Morrison and Chris Isaak among his fans and collaborators.
Former 76 Club DJ and reunion organiser Jason Hunt said he hoped this year’s event would match the 800 capacity sell-out for last year’s event.
He told the Mail: “Last year was an amazing success. The corridors were rammed with people who had not seen each other for years wanting to talk to each other, the bands were fantastic and the atmosphere was mindblowing.
“We were asked if we would do another one and as we managed to get Geno, who we had wanted to get for last year, we decided to do one for the 51st anniversary.
“Geno is a legend in his own right and is one hell of a showman, but James Hunter is also getting to be a bit of a legend both here and in the US.
“He does a kind of mix of blues, R&B and some of the tunes he’s written himself have a bit of rock ‘n’ roll and a bit of swing. He’s amazing.”
Next Saturday’s concert, which runs from 7pm to 2am, will feature soul and Motown sets from 76 Club DJs Jason Hunt, Glenn Leedham and Kev Orton, while a mini beer festival will also be held.
Tickets, priced £15, are available by calling Jason Hunt 07789 992411, Keith Large on 07971 972704 or from the Wetmore Whistle, in Wetmore Road, which can be contacted on 01283 515762.