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Wyman and Co. Bring Rhythm to City

Posted in News on November 28th, 2011 by MaryWilson

From the Salisbury Journal by Pete Gregory


THIS was number 26 out of 36 of Bill Wyman’s Rhythm Kings tour venues and the City Hall welcomed his return with not a spare seat in the house.

And he brought with him as special guest all the way from America – Mary Wilson of The Supremes fame.

On stage with Bill were eight musicians and six vocalists with exceptional musical pedigrees and the band provided an eclectic mix of musical styles ranging from rhythm and blues, soul, rockabilly, blues, jazz, country, rock and jump. Added to this was Motown, courtesy of Mary Wilson.

There were many high points during the show beginning with Georgie Fame on his Hammond organ belting out I’ve Got a Woman. Two great duets from Mary Wilson and Georgie Fame with Stormy Weather and Beverley Skeet and Albert Lee with the Everly Brothers song, So Sad. Coupling this with the high energy radiating from the stage when the band played as a unit made for a fabulous evening.

Songs such as Three Cool Cats, the Coasters classic featuring a memorable Frank Mead sax solo and Albert Lee singing Lonnie Donegan’s Mule Skinner Blues. A soulful Beverley Skeet singing the James Brown classic It’s a Man’s World silenced the audience and band.

Mary Wilson’s contribution was immense, reintroducing a medley of Supremes favourites from Baby Love to You Can’t Hurry Love as well as a beautiful version of the Nora Jones song, Don’t Know Why.

Bill Wyman did what he always did as a member of the Rolling Stones, standing at the back of the stage and laying down the bass rhythm while letting all the showbusiness go on in front of him.

The Mary Wilson Supremes Collection: Wichita Art Museum

Posted in News on November 19th, 2011 by MaryWilson

The Mary Wilson Supremes Gowns Collection is currently being hosted by the Wichita Art Museum in Wichita, Kansas through January 12th, 2012.

What concert attendees are saying about Bill Wyman’s Rhythm Kings & Mary Wilson…

Posted in News on November 14th, 2011 by MaryWilson

“Without doubt one of the most enjoyable performances we have ever seen. Eleven superb artists at the top of their form throughout. Bill is so understated but a true craftsman of his art, and Georgie Fame has lost none of the magic or the amazing quality of his voice. Albert Lee is a true genius of the guitar, and in the words of Eric Clapton, The Best Guitarist in the World. It is invidious to pick out individuals in what was a most unforgettable evening, but in addition to the above, Beverley Skeete has a voice and artistry that deserves far better recognition.
And then there was Mary Wilson. Wow! The Lady can sure belt out the numbers and had the energy and stage presence to cap what was a perfect evening. If you ever get the chance, go and see Bill and the band.”

“Good gig with plenty of variety of musical genre, Mary Wilson and Geogie Fame were great. All the band gave excellent performances. Over 3 hours well spent.”

“What a great nights’ entertainment, all the band were truly fantastic. Mary Wilson was very special. The female vocalist has an amazing voice. I took my son as a birthday present and he loved it too.”

“Favourite moment: Mary Wilson special guest. She can command an audience and certainly got everyone moving.”

“Really enjoyed the show.. and the banter! Great musicians.. pianist especially (his name? sorry.. senior moment here.. lol) Mary Wilson was fantastic and brought back lots of memories of visiting ‘tamla motown’ clubs in birmingham when I was in my teens!”

“This was the second time we have seen Bill Wyman’s Rhythm Kings and we felt it was a bit slow to get going this time. It wasn’t helped by the acoustics at the Bridgewater Hall. We thought we were lucky to have booked seats in row D only four rows back from the front. However the acoustics meant that when the artists talked to the audience we found it very difficult (as did the people around us) to hear what they were saying. Also the female vocalist, Beverley Skeete, who we had thoroughly enjoyed last time, was almost impossible to hear. It was a bit better in the second half and Mary Wilson was superb. Overall we enjoyed the concert but felt that a bit more care needed taking with the sound system – whether that was the fault of the engineers or Bridgewater Hall we don’t know!”

“Another great evening with the Rhythm Kings. Had a great seat only 6 rows from the stage and once they had got the balance right between voices and instruments it was fantastic (first 3/4 numbers were too indistinct). Albert Lee is a real pro and can be relied on to keep things going – would go just to listen to him!! Thank goodness Bev is singing something different this tour – duet with Albert was brilliant! Frank could do a couple too if they let him – impressed! GF still the man though! Really enjoyed the Honkey Tonk Women at the end even though Bill looked a bit unsure – got us all up anyway! Long may they continue!!!! Favourite moment: Couldn’t believe how great Mary Wilson was – another tru pro. Dancing in the Street was the highlight for me -BRILL!!!!!!!”

“A very entertaining night, quality musicians enjoying themselves and playing well known and well loved songs. Beverley Skeete and Mary Wilson were class acts. Will book to see them when they tour again.”

“A fab evening, the band were great and Mary Wilson was fantastic.”

Review: Rhythm Kings and Mary Wilson – pop music at its best

Posted in News on November 14th, 2011 by MaryWilson


An impressive crowd ventured onto a Promenade battered by gales and lashed rain to see the most talented member of the Rolling Stones, accompanied by his eight-piece all-star band, the Rhythm Kings.

Bill Wyman wandered onstage to explain they would be playing an eclectic selection of music ranging across the fields of jazz, blues, standards, R & B, rockabilly, soul, skiffle and rock’n’roll.

The show opened with George Fame playing a few bars of Gracie Field’s ‘Sally’, insisting he came from Leigh not Rochdale and he used to come to Southport for his holidays as a kid.

Highspots for me were England’s top guitarist, Albert Lee, turning to skiffle for ‘Muleskinner Blues’; Shakin’ Stevens’ ex-keyboard player, Geraint Watkins, with a soulful version of Irma Thomas’s ‘It’s Raining’; the glamorous Beverly Skeete performing a great version of Jackie Wilson’s ‘I’ll be Satisfied’ and Mary Wilson, making a quick return to Southport, sounding as good as Diana Ross on three old Supremes hits.

The first half of the show, which closed with the quietly watching Wyman stepping into the limelight to sing Chuck Berry’s ‘You Never Can Tell’, then the second half followed the same pattern except Mary Wilson chose to do numbers from her new CD as a change, she said, from her Motown days. The finale came far too soon with Mary Wilson leading the band in a rousing version of ‘Dancing in the Street’ and the crowd were shouting for more as the lights came up.

It was the pop music equivalent of a classical concert played by as talented a group of musicians as you would find anywhere in Britain.

Star Rating: 8 out of 10. Pop music at its best.

Review: Bill Wyman Rhythm Kings with Mary Wilson, Southport Theatre

Posted in News on November 14th, 2011 by MaryWilson

From Click Liverpool by Jeanette Smith

Famous for being the bass guitarist with the Rolling Stones, Bill Wyman has now come back to his musical roots with Bill Wyman’s Rhythm Kings, a nine-piece combo of virtuoso musicians.
On Tuesday night they played two-hour gig at Southport Theatre with a set comprising jazz, blues, soul, rockabilly and good old rock’n’roll. Supporting him were Graham Broad on drums, Terry Taylor on guitar, Geraint Watkins on piano, The brilliant Albert Lee on guitar, Georgie Fame on organ, Frank Mead and Nick Payn on horns, and Beverly Skeete on vocals.
The band, with various line-ups, has been going for 12 years, with the newest member, Geraint, playing with them for the past three years.
The night kicked off with a raucous rendering of Jitterbug Boogie followed by the delicious Beverly Skeete singing a soulful Tell Mama to a big band sound from the combo. Beverly has such range and her voice has that blues quality that keeps you mesmerised.
Each musician had his turn to foreground his expertise, especially Terry Taylor with amazing guitar riffs, and hornmen Frank Mead and Nick Payn who boogied the night away with full-bodied sound.
Georgie Fame, of the Blue Flames, on organ was in good voice, and seemed to be running the show. Bill Wyman, who mainly stood and played bass, took little part in the show and although he introduced the musicians, for the most part just stood and played looking totally disinterested though no doubt behind the scenes it is he who has put the whole show together. But it would have been nice to at least see him smile!
The star of the show was guest Mary Wilson of the Supremes and at 67 years, bopped around the stage and was such a spark of fun. Her voice is as good as ever with renderings of her great hits, Stop in the Name of Love, Dancing in the Street, and I Need Love. She interacted brilliantly with the audience and was in great shape for her age.
However, though this show had some brilliant spots, the main choice of music seemed a little samey. There were some dramatic interludes, like when Skeete sang It’s a Man’s World, showing off her great vocal skill, and the tender So Sad when Skeete duo-ed with Terry Taylor, bringing the evocative Everley’s hit a new poignancy.
Having Mary Wilson on the show lifted what could have been a rather run-of-the-mill set. There is no doubt that Wyman’s musicians are all masters of their art, but at times it seemed their playing could have meshed better.
As this is only the second gig in the run maybe this will change.

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