One of my favorite blues artists is John Mayall. He is a consummate craftsman when it comes to his recordings and live performances. I find him an authority of the blues but never egotistical with his art or as a person.
I have met John Mayall twice at his shows over the decades. The first time was a blast as we sat on the stairs backstage at The Capitol Theater in Portchester, NY in 1973. I conducted an interview with John Mayall and his trumpet player Blue Mitchell. It was laid back as we talked. Blue Mitchell shared his bottle of Jack Daniels with us.
The second time I met John Mayall was before a concert at Infinity Music Hall in Norfolk, Ct. I went to the lobby to get our tickets and noticed there was a merchandise table. I was looking over the merch when I noticed John Mayall moving behind the card table. He was manning the table and talking with fans. I ran out to my car in the parking lot as I had brought the liner notes from Turning Point and Empty Rooms to be possibly signed. Sign them he did and we spoke about his past. He didn’t recall having drinks backstage at The Capitol but did smile fondly about Blue Mitchell.
His latest studio recording is titled, Find A Way To Care. It was released today, September 4th. John Mayall is 81 years young and is touring extensively in Europe this fall in support of this album. Here is a video to give you more insight into his present band and the recording experience.