New Video, New Tunes, And all at Otto’s!
Ran into the city tonight to see an old fav. Jane Lee Hooker. I have been following them since I heard about them in a noodle joint across from what was at that time Fontana’s. Must have been like 2013? Basically doing blues standards in what I would describe as the style of the Stones or Humble Pie circa 1972 and with this powerful soul singer comparable to a Tina Turner. All done with a certain energy or intensity.
In Jane Lee Hooker you just have a great rock n roll band. The rhythm section – Melissa ‘Cool Whip’ Houston on the drums and Hail Mary Z on the bass, the two guitarists – High Top and Tina T-Bone, that work so well together, just jamming, exchanging licks, the whole time on stage. and in the middle of all this, you got this powerful passionate soulful singer, Dana Danger, front and center. Yes, all ladies and again. . . intense.
Now here is the deal. The first three years they did these blues standards and they were cool. Muddy Waters, Howlin Wolf, and the like. I loved their version of Champagne and Reefer. And their take on Mannish Boy. Oh my God. It was more powerful than any version that a man, or group of men, I saw do it. Dana Danger was just possessed on that song. It was a pleasure to watch.
But you can have too much of a good thing, and by the time I caught up with them at the Iridium in July of 2016, I had had my fill. Part of it I think is I do not like dinner theaters. Sitting at a table for a show? What is that? Then again it is the Iridium. . . I walked in just thinking bout Les Paul.
Anyway, jump ahead to 2017 and today it is December 11th. 2017 is almost done and I have wondered what they were up to. They had signed with a small label two years back, and I knew they had been touring around. And last week I see they are playing Otto’s Shrunken Head on a Sunday Night. So I marked my calendar. Time to see what is new!
And damn I am glad I did. Arrived at Otto’s and ran into Frank Wood at the door checking IDs. Of course. Inside, Bikini Carwash was already working through their set. Just a fun act from Brooklyn doing some tasty punk tunes with Lizzie Steelheart on vocals.
And Jane Lee Hooker came up next. Starting with new video promoting a new album. I believe the title of the album was Mama Said. A cool video starting on the streets. Dana Danger and her crew meeting up on the steps of her building, and then descending to Otto’s for a rehearsal, which as it happens was were we all were as we watched. Nice.
Nicer yet was the set that followed. All their amazing playing and energy and soul, that I had witnessed over the past few years but now applied lovingly to some original tunes. All those lovely guitar licks, all that neat drum and bass work. Those soulful vocals of Dana Danger but doing a whole new set of all new tunes!
I look forward to seeing them again. I may have a short attention span, but I will be following this band in 2018.
I already downloaded their new album, Spiritus, which I was pleasantly surprised was already up on iTunes! I heard them reference the site, but I thought they were just pointing to their first album, which is very much worth getting!