A group of local Berkshire RBFRS staff and firefighters have put their musical skills to good use by releasing a song called “You Can’t Stop the Fire” which is a clever parody of Bruce Springsteen’s “Dancing in the Dark”.
The key aim of the song is to get fire safety advice out to people in a slightly different way.
The team — led by the inextinguishable rogue Keith Beasley [the lead singer of the Country Rock and Blues band “One For the Road” ] is brought to life with an accompanying video [watch below.]
Staff from across the organisation were involved in the project, including crews from Maidenhead, Whitley Wood and non-operational colleagues based at headquarters.
When they’re ready, here’s some ideas for their next song:
* Burning Down the House — Talking Heads
* Run the Engines Up High — Roy Orbison
* Playing With Fire — Rolling Stones
* Pound the Alarm — Nicki Minaj
* Holy Smoke — Iron Maiden
* Firestarter — The Prodigy
Please watch and share their super video below and consider making a donation to The Fire Fighters Charity —which provides life enhancing services to the fire and rescue community…
ONE FOR THE ROAD are a well respected local Americana band (Country Rock and Blues ) who play their own highly original songs alongside fresh covers of songs by artists of the caliber of Tom Petty, Steve Earle, The Traveling Wilburys, Bob Dylan, Old Crow Medicine Show, JJ Cale etc.
We saw them play their live show at the super Staines Music Venue – the Riverside Club, last week.
Things were dark and murky with the ace cover of Jace Everett’s “Bad Things” ( the theme from the HBO series True Blood) which had plenty of strangely interwoven and eerily evocative violin-play and a lot of early twang. The song was filled with sweaty, humid atmosphere.
“Handle with Care” — the Traveling Wilburys song from 1988 — demonstrated the band’s skilled and assured interaction with each other… all the band (for example) have to play the parts originally laid down by Harrison , Lynne, Orbison, Petty, and Dylan. It’s a bit of an ask. To be sure. Yet the lads accomplished it successfully. Keith’s voice was the right kind of husky/smoky on this number (more Dylan than Orbison, though) — but this suited the song well.
Keith told us that the band would be incorporating some Blackberry Smoke into their set. The Southern Rock melodies fitted well in the general atmosphere and the structure of the show. Other favorites included the classic Old Crow Medicine Show & Bob Dylan’s number “Wagon Wheel” (also a Darius Rucker hit in 2013.)
The other ONE FOR THE ROAD moon-shining staple “Copperhead Road” ( Steve Earle ) got folks up-and-dancing in the Riverside Club.
This was a glorious show … it was as if we had turned off of Route 66 and headed along a dusty old track to discover Old Doc’s Little Grill. Where we fortunately found a talented group of guys who love to play together … rocking a bit harder than a jug-band, but keeping
intact the tradition and the craftsmanship.
Haunted by equipment failures and the lack of monitors and cursed with an ear-splitting violin — it was not the most polished performance we have heard from “One For the Road”. We saw the band last evening in Staines at the famous Riverside Club.
The shoddy offerings did not matter. The public still had a great time. And there was no lack of enthusiasm or energy from the musicians.
Things started going wrong on their cover of Jace Everett’s “Bad Things” which is the theme from the HBO series True Blood. Maybe it was the curse of the vampire voodoo!
After the first equipment glitch, the well-beloved Steve Earle, Tom Petty (Tim Potty) and JJ Cale ( JJJ Cale ) songs came thick and fast. With some accomplished vocals and reasonably polished guitar work.
Gavin Jones is an is an exceptionally skillful violin player.
But his sounds completely overshadowed the rest of the band.
We have to admit that his blues-violin does add spice and garnish to the overall sound of the band — but the violin should be a condiment served selectively and considerately… not the main course!
The rhythm and blues standard “Route 66” got folks up-and-dancing and the second half of the show seemed more promising — with less equipment problems.
Our favourite songs included the Old Crow Medicine Show’s & Bob Dylan’s classic “Wagon Wheel.” This is where the violin became attractive and lyrical. The main vocal was certainly evocative of the smoke and grit of Dylan. But full marks must also go to other members of the band for providing excellent support vox.
We also enjoyed the cover of Steve Earle’s “Copperhead Road” which was animated and emotional.
There were less Beasley compositions in this Staines show than usual (which is a shame.) No “I Wanna Be An Outlaw” for example. But we liked the new song (from a forthcoming album that the lads are working on.)
Refined country rock and Americana by one of the most popular bands in the area.
We have been watching Keith Beasley’s new video for his (old) song “Heat Of The Night”.
It appears on Keith’s album – “Highways Hobos & Heroes” [Available for download on many sites including iTunes and Amazon].
It was written by Keith and recorded in 2005 – with a whole bunch of fine musicians – all of whom are credited at the end of the short film.
A sloppy-joe sandwich of sad-eloquent
harmonica (Kenny Mann) and bluesy keys (Lyndsey Lee) creates an echoing portico of rhythms through which Keith (with his guitar) delivers his guttural pouches of voice. And takes his hat off… a lot.
Gravel throated, gritty and dusty road – this is, of course, a fantasy Dylanesque number …
Full of mystery – like a folk ritual-
Perhaps it alludes to the courtship rituals of an exotic princess –
before her final death-kiss arrives.
I have said it before and I’ll say it again. “They don’t know how good they are.”
But when you don’t have any conceit or any pretensions to grandeur then this is what you get … honest-to-goodness hard-working fun … all the enjoyment you could imagine. The quality of the session shines through.
These individuals clearly love to work together – they enjoy producing a sound that works really well for them – and because they’re
entertained … well, it means we are entertained too!
It’s a simple formula but it’s surprising that some bands don’t quite ‘get it.’ But with “One For The Road” you always get the fun and the energy. That is why bands like this help remind you that it’s always best to experience music played live.
Sadly, the Staines Riverside show was one of Kenny’s (harmonica) last gigs.
The tall, hairy, congenial Scotsman has been a regular sight at the club for many years – not just playing with the ‘One for The Road’ band – but also supporting other bands and coming to the club to watch shows with the rest of us on Thursday nights. We will miss him a lot – but he hasn’t given up music all together – it’s just that he lives “A million miles away, now” and so he cannot keep making the journey back to Surrey.
And talking about rehearsals – last night’s show at the splendid Staines Riverside Club was not rehearsed. “That is how we do….” Kenny told me.
But so what? It may have been a bit rough around the edges. And Keith needed to read some of the more tricky song lyrics – maybe the ‘transitions’ were not as super-smooth as they should have been. But it was an authentic, entertaining, rock show. And rock is not about precision. It’s about attitude.
As unusual, we got a tidy collection of good old rock and roll, roots rock and heartland blues – all performed with the swagger we have come to expect.
Popular covers included “I Won’t Back Down” (Petty and Jeff Lynne) and “Folsom Prison Blues” (Cash.)
These were weaved in with some wonderful choices. From Steve Earle numbers, and songs written by JJ Cale and Dylan – and Keith’s own very memorable songs like “I Wanna Be An Outlaw”.
(Keith told the audience he had just returned from a huge road-trip around Arizona and Texas – he visited Earle’s childhood hometown of San Antonio and he saw Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers perform at Houston.) So we had a rousing version of the “Mary Jane’s Last Dance” as a celebration.
We have been waiting for someone to do a good cover of “Bad Things” ( the theme song for the HBO series True Blood.) This Jace Everett number – played by One For The Road – had all of the fetid ooziness and sweaty mire of a Louisiana swamp – you could just imagine it being played on the jukebox at Merlotte’s.
“Wagon Wheel” is a song originally sketched out by Bob Dylan on his ‘Pat Garrett and Billy the Kid’ sessions. It was re-drawn and thoroughly
re-invigorated by the Old Crow Medicine Show and describes a hitchhiking journey down the East Coast of the States. It is one of those songs that is really infectious – it demands to be sung out loud -preferably by the whole congregation. The One For The Road Boys played a darned good version of this. With twinkling guitars and stunning percussion. They confessed to preferring the ‘Darius Rucker’ version. [See below] It was an inspired choice for their show.
So, this was another great evening spent with some bona fide talent. In a great little club. So here’s to another chorus:
“Rock me mama like a wagon wheel…
Rock me mama anyway you feel”
The 14 songs on this country-blues album have been written, recorded and compiled by Keith Beasley over a period of 15 years (1995 – 2010) and have been chosen by him from an extensive song-book … as the songs that mean the most personally. He admits to being heavily influenced by the nostalgia of a highly stylized American culture. Keith is an accomplished blues, folk and rock ‘n’ roll musician. He has played many gigs in and around Staines with his ONE FOR THE ROAD band. This is an eagerly anticipated album of his collected inspirations and influences.
Songs such as ‘Wounded Knee’ have almost Dylanesque chord structures growing within them, and in this tune the chords seem to echo out across the Mesa. The words in the song tumble down gracefully – like the tears on Red Cloud morning . Harmonicas flare occasionally, as those old heart aching embers are rekindled. This gently stirring country song ambles along in the midday sun with a suitable lope and a knowing glint in a saddened eye.
Since this album is a journey through the hobo States, it is no surprise that there are a lot of train references. ‘Mystery Train’ is one such reference- a chugging steamer of a song, pounding its way up the tracks with an agreeable thud.
‘Ghost Train’ is a bit more ashen faced. Lazy-necked and slippery bottled strings are peeled from Keith’s guitar like the skins from a tacked up side-winder. The out-and-out blues rhythms clutter along. A harmonica frolics with whiskey soaked guitars, as manful rhythms stride purposefully down a dusty line.
‘Looking for The Country’ is a traditional rock and blues merrymaking roister-doister of a piece. You’ll need to polish the tips on your bolo-tie and watch your boot-straps don’t snag on her hems – because I guarantee that you’ll not stop dancing to this one!
‘57 Chevrolet’ has a buzzing riff and feels like a real man-sized road-song- it’s chock full of smoke and dust. ‘Heat of The Night’ opens with organ sounds, and it really feels like a night under stars south of the “Big River”. The song retains it’s big hot city swagger, amidst the grime and stench of a dirty Maquiladora. And a burst of juicy sax retells the magnificence that could even be possible here in this squalid heat.
Another train song is ‘The Southbound Train’ a hardy blues outing with those familiar globular, throaty vocals from Keith, powdered with silica-dust rhythms.
The album finishes with ‘The Saddest Song’ a tune that perfectly suits Keith’s guttural, gurgled voice. A lamenting story, decorated by bowls of mournful bass-notes. This is bleak and blameless yet perks up when the whines and cries of swirling guitars rise against the smoky fogs of despair. Things brighten up as the song unfolds into perfect harmony and heaven sent clemency.
This album has already been given the great seal of approval from Radio Kili, (the Lakota Sioux Radio Station in South Dakota, out on the Pine Ridge Reservation.) Keith has received messages of support and “Woplia” (Great Thanks) from Morris Bull Bear who is the living descendant of Chief Bull Bear – killed by Red Cloud in a tribal dispute. Apparently Morris Bull Bear’s family love the ‘Wounded Knee’ song.
Five piece ‘Southern Fried Country Rock Band’ ONE FOR THE ROAD played a jam-packed jambalaya of a gig at the fine RIVERSIDE CLUB venue in Laleham Road Staines on Thursday January 19 2012.
This popular venue has attracted some amazing musical talent on their regular Thursday music nights, and this bluesey rocky band were no exception. Full of gusto, energy and promise from the outset, the band stormed through a lively first set with sparkling examples of some classic hits from the likes of Tom Petty, Primal Scream, The Rolling Stones, Creedence Clearwater Revival and a dash of Johnny Cash. Also scattered in there were some more unlikely namechecks like, for example, Kentucky Headhunters.
Our guide for this journey around Americana and all things Southern, from Navajo Territory to swamp country, was the amiable gravel-throated ‘Kid Rock’ lookalike Keith Beasley (lead vocals and guitar) wearing his ‘Baptized in Muddy Waters’ T shirt and sporting a tortoise-brown rather dapper hat. But the band also boasted the rawest, smokiest blues-harp player this side of the cotton belt, and one mean rattlesnake on drums, plus a fierce lead guitar player and a bruising, bouncing bass. This is a quality act.
The second set brought the delighted Staines crowd some solid golden nuggets of sound, covering numbers by the likes of The Traveling Wilburys, Kid Rock and even finishing with some antic-filled punk – The Undertones “Teenage Kicks”.
And all the way through the show, you could almost smell the shrimp on the barbecue and taste the smoky bourbon on the air. At one point both Adrian and Kenny played joyful King Biscuit blues harmonica together- this was a terrific moment- ( “Stone Fox Chase”). A rootin’ tootin’ howlin’ success.
My personal favourite was the band’s self penned ‘You Can Steal’ song which had a gruff attitude (comparisons with Dylan were formed) and rusty, dusty percussion. Tobacco stained, rubenesque (fat and delicious) guitars meander and burst out of their corsets. Huge surly riffs mingle and mix, with a great chorus which has raise-your-knees-and-jig danceability written all over it. A true Southern delight.
If you get a chance to see this act live, grab it. Don’t forget your ‘gator skin shoes and your flask of moonshine though…. ‘cos you’ll make a night of it!