All photos courtesy of Martin Borders
British singer and songwriter, Bobby Long, has cultivated quite a following since his humble beginnings across the pond where he used to perform at open mic nights with friends at a local pub. He has crafted his skill with performance after performance, and while he was just getting his feet wet when he started performing at local bars and venues, yet world renowned, like 3rd and Lindsley, Stubb’s BBQ, and our very own Eddie’s Attic, his performance and vocals continue to get stronger, and his stage presence is magnetic. Honestly, his performances are better with each time he performs. It’s as if the stage calls his name, and he yearns to be on it. They agree with each other, and the audience can sense that too, because the artist is more at ease with their performance and invokes the audience to participate when they’re in their element, and Bobby’s definitely one who is.
Kicking off Friday evening’s set at the world renowned Eddie’s Attic is a fellow acoustic singer-songwriter Michael Bernard Fitzgerald, who is on his second tour with Bobby. He’s a good character at getting the already lively crowd warmed up with warm and funny jokes about his recent only-when-touring addiction reality television show, “Gold Rush,” and attempted to whistle during one of his songs, but was distracted by our laughing, so he had to forego his whistling, and instead opted for his “new” song about his newfound love for “Gold Rush”! He played a few favorites, with a great cover of Springsteen’s “Dancing in the Dark.” Fitzgerald has a keen talent for singing and playing the guitar, and his songs are subtle and whimsical, along with inviting. He’s got an acoustic reggae vibe with a lot of soul.
Bobby came out shortly after Michael’s set and the already energetic crowd sang along as soon as Bobby belted out his first song. He played a few new singles, that haven’t yet been released, and he always plays old favorites from his earlier beginnings, such as “Who Have You Been Loving,” (my personal favorite, besides his deeply melancholic “Two-Tone Lover”), “Dead and Done,” “The Bounty of Mary Jane,” and more. With the playing of his past favorites, he takes requests from the audience, which I think is a great way to connect with your fans and the artist, and Bobby invites his audience to sing-along quite a bit too. Bobby played almost a two-hour set, and displayed musical vulnerability at its finest. He closed with a rare classic and cover of a positive Louis Armstrong single. While Bobby adds his own style to each song he delivers, with great inflection, he’s best when he performs his bluesy music. His massive guitar skills come out of the woodwork, and give him the incredible opportunity to display his impressive chops. Bobby and Michael are an act not to miss if they’re playing in your area on this time around!