A barely 21 year-old Jeff Healey *tears* through a killer set, live at Toronto’s legendary El Mocambo 1987!
At the time, Jeff and the band were still a year away from their major US label record deal, still pushing the indie 45 ‘Adrianna/See The Light‘ and still struggling with an apathetic Canadian music industry. But the audiences… the audiences were sitting up and taking notice and the JHB’s fanbase was spreading like wildfire.
JHB shows were always special, but in these early days, they were incendiary. There was a hunger in Jeff Healey’s performances, a determination to show the world what he could do. His Jimi Hendrix influence was a lot more visible at this stage but it was still strongly filtered through Jeff’s own unique talents. His playing was stellar and he was taking joy in refining the “show” aspects, feeding off of the audience response, always leaving them wanting more.
This set is a prime example of why it was so easy for Toronto to fall head over heels with its native son. Jeff is absolutely *on fire*, pushing (and punishing) his guitar to the limit.
The Freddie King classic that would eventually wind up on Jeff’s major label debut (netting him his first Grammy Nomination)…
A song that would follow Jeff throughout his career, it would eventually be recorded for the ‘Hell To Pay‘ album with none other than George Harrison himself singing back-up and playing rhythm acoustic guitar.
The band’s signature tune, always an opportunity for Jeff to cut loose and follow his muse.
Jeff blazes on this *EPIC* 10 minute version of the Jimi Hendrix smash!
(“With a little Star Spangled Banner to send us off…. I remember the day that Jeff and I went out shopping for a strat. It boiled down to two guitars and he ended up with that sunburst Squire he’s playing here. The USA vintage model was a bit expensive. That’s my old Cry Baby wah pedal on the floor. He used that to record “See The Light”. Jimi would have enjoyed that version of Foxy Lady…” ~ Corey Mihailiuk – an old friend of Jeff’s)
…and finally, we close out with another blues classic… a song that would continue to pop up in sets throughout Jeff’s career…