Just Kiddin [Covers 50s - present, 5 piece]
This was the third time I had seen Just Kiddin' -- and they never disappoint.
The five-piece band offer punters something a little bit different from the norm. Their choice of material is excellent and, at times, they sound like an American West Coast rock band.
Starting out with the Beach Boys surfing rocker Do It Again the band then rocked their way through the Travelling Wilburys' tuneful Handle With Care and Blue Oyster Cult's pounder Don't Fear The Reeper.
But this talented quintet are just as adept when it comes to re-creating the sound of the mod era -- and the Three Wishes audience loved the Small Faces' double of All Or Nothing and Sha-La-La-La-Lee; plus two thumpers from the Who -- Substitute and Won't Get Fooled Again.
John O'Sullivan handles the vocals with aplomb and keeps up some lively humorous banter between songs. The rest of the band comprise the outstanding Pedals Darby on various lead guitars (and pedals); Chris Plunkett (backing vocals and rhythm guitar). Mic Goorwitch (bass) and Ronnie Dance on drums.
They are really tight musicians which they demonstrated to great effect on the Doors/Status Quo rock and blues classic Roadhouse Blues.
Just Kiddin' did an absolutely marathon first set comprising 20 songs and they received an excellent response from the lively crowd.
Highlights of the shorter second set included a rousing rendition of Pink Floyd's Another Brick In The Wall; a great interpretation of Stevie Ray Vaughan's blues classic Pride And Joy; and an exciting performance of Toots and the Maytals' reggae classic Monkey Man, which had loads of people on their feet.
It comes as little surprise that Just Kiddin' have a long list of forthcoming gigs on Lemonrock. They are justifiably in big demand.
COLIN FENN, DJ/Freelance JournalistColin Fenn, Wednesday 4 December 2019
Third time lucky!
Thanks for the kind words, we aim to please so include an eclectic mix of songs as possible.
Hopefully see you soon for another great night.
I hadn't seen Just Kiddin for two years so thought it was time to enjoy another night of their great music.
And I had forgotten what a great lead guitarist they have in their ranks. Pedals Darby must be one of the finest guitarists on the local pub and club circuit. This man has real class as he demonstrated throughout the band's two sets at the music-loving Three Wishes.
His guitar technique on Lynyrd Skynyrd's rock classic Freebird was nothing less than sensational as he threw in every guitar trick in the book on a version that seemed to last even longer than Skynryd's original. It was a very fitting end to the first half and deserved the standing ovation he received.
His inventiveness could be heard again on Led Zeppelin's Whole Lotta Love and the gritty Wild Cherry dancer Play That Funky Music. Wow, what a player.
Singer John O'Sullivan looks like he's having a good time at his gigs. He is full of lively banter between songs and the audience always warm to his chirpy manner. Unfortunately, sitting further back in the pub, I couldn't hear all his chat -- but the audience loved him.
John's vocals were drowned out a bit at the start by the four musicians (the three others are Chris Plunkett, on rhythm guitar; Mic Goorwitch on bass and Ronnie Dance on drums) but it improved as the evening progressed. John is particularly strong on the punk-ish numbers like the Kinks' David Watts, the Clash's Should I Stay Or Should I Go and the Jam's A Town Called Malice.
I still believe the band should do more songs by the Small Faces (they did an excellent version of Sha-La-La-La-Lee) and the Who -- perhaps All Or Nothing and The Kids Are Alright.
The band are so good at rock that I felt it was unnecessary at the start of set two to do cliche numbers like Wilson Pickett's Mustang Sally and Van Morrison's Brown Eyed Girl (you wouldn't believe how many groups I've heard do these 'karaoke' numbers). So I was delighted when they returned to rock in part two with great rockers by Queen, Bryan Adams and Pink Floyd.
Just Kiddin are a first-rate band. If you haven't seen them, check out their forthcoming gig list.
COLIN FENN, DJ/Freelance JournalistFriday 2 March 2018
Just Kiddin have been performing on the pub and club circuit for six years now but this was the first time I had seen them in action, and I'm really pleased I ventured out on a bitterly cold night to review this five-piece act who quickly won over the Three Wishes' regulars.
In John O'Sullivan, the band have a great frontman, who works hard at reaching his audience and having them warm to his likeable, chirpy, Cockney manner.
The balance between vocals and instruments was absolutely perfect when the quintet kicked off with Stevie Wonder's funky classic "Superstition" followed by Paul Weller's jangling "The Changingman".
John announced the band wanted to pay tribute to highly prolific and well-loved rock stars who had just died, and in honour of Glenn Frey and David Bowie the band performed well received offerings of "Take It Easy" and two of the Thin White Duke's hits, "Ziggy Stardust" and "Rebel Rebel".
The Doors' rock classic "Roadhouse Blues" provided the opportunity for lead guitarist, Pedals Darby, to demonstrate his dexterity and show why he brings so many foot pedals to a gig, while the Thin Lizzy hit "Don't Believe A Word" was given fascinating treatment with the band leading into the number in a slow, bluesy style only to finish it in true raucous rock fashion!
'Pedals' was in fine form again during the solo on Prince's anthem "Purple Rain" and on Lynyrd Skynyrd's lengthy "Freebird" (the number that closed the first half) his virtuoso marathon guitar solo fully justifying the standing ovation he received from the Winchmore Hill crowd.
The Who's epic rocker "Won't Get Fooled Again" started part two, with John looking very comfortable in Roger Daltrey's role. In fact, the song proved such a perfect vehicle for the band, that I hasten to suggest they perform a few more Who numbers in their act.
John and Pedals, together with rhythm guitarist Chris Plunkett, bass player Mike Goorwitch and drummer Ronnie Dance, gave an outstanding rendition of Rod Stewart's "Maggie May", which had the audience on their feet as the second half of the gig saw the band settle into more upbeat mode featuring a mix of soul, disco and rock numbers.
Highlights were a punchy reggae number" Monkey Man", made famous by Toots and the Maytals; a rocking version of Bryan Adams' classic "Summer Of '69"; and a lively interpretation of Queen's "Crazy Little Thing Called Love".
On a minor point, John is a strong singer, but he could do with more backing vocals from the others. That said, I very much look forward to seeing Just Kiddin again.
Colin Fenn, DJ, journalistFriday 29 January 2016
When someone who's seen more bands than Simon Cowell comes to see and review you I can tell you it does feel a little bit scary. Fortunately Colin and Karen must have had their hearing aids off that night and their positive feedback and well chosen words are very much appreciated.
Well normally I don't write anything but as a player and being part of the audience for a change, I cannot resist telling you that this was one of the best gigs I have been to in ages. The band played 2 really broad ranging sets interspersed with a long pause for the boxing. The second set was just brilliant and they played for a good 90 minutes (or more). An eclectic bag of musical treats. A fine bunch of incredibly talented musicians. Great fun for all who were there. Will not hesitate to catch up with them again. Well done lads!
GaryMonday 25 November 2013
Thanks Gary, time flies when you having fun.
It was our first time at the Horn and Horseshoes and what a great place to play. A really relaxed atmosphere and a most enjoyable evening all round.
Im a member at this club and we have a band every week. But these boys really knocked spots of the other bands. I never give feedback but felt I should make an effort as they were so good. Everything from old standards, dance stuff and some more unusual stuff like Paul Weller, Eagles and finished off with some great anthems. Also good banter with the crowd. Great band.
BobMonday 4 November 2013
Thanks Bob. I'm sure we'll see you again soon.