Marcus King

A Dream Come True

Cox Capitol Theatre, Macon Georgia – November 14, 2015


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By Barry Brandow

If you’re not familiar with Marcus King, you will be soon. The 19 year old South Carolina native has been taking the blues world by storm ever since his first album “Soul Insight” on Evil Teen Records debuted at number 8 on the Billboard blues charts.  The young guitarist, who’s been playing guitar since the age of seven, is strongly influenced by his heroes Warren Haynes and Derek Trucks, two of the greatest guitar players in music today.  That could easily explain why one of his favorite bands, The Allman Brothers, has had such an impact on his career.

King, who has opened for such bands as Gov’t Mule, The Foo Fighters, and Johnny Winter has currently joined The Revivalists opening with his band The Marcus King Band for several dates on their current tour in cities such as Charlottesville Va., Charlotte NC, Charleston SC, and tonight 11/14/15 in Macon Ga. where The Allman Brothers called home for many years.   When the offer and invitation was presented to the budding superstar to shoot one of his videos at the famed “Big House” where the Allmans recorded, played, and lived there was no hesitation to accept. The Big House is now a cherished museum containing vintage and historic memorabilia from the Allman Brothers 40 plus years of existence. One of the most prized items the museum contains it the famous 1957 Gold Top Gibson Les Paul guitar that was frequently played by King’s idol, Duane Allman. When King was told he’d be able to shoot the video playing that guitar, the young blues virtuoso was overcome with elation.

During the first 3 shows that the Marcus King Band has opened for The Revivalists, Marcus has guested with the band during their set. First in Charlottesville Va. while paying tribute to Allen Toussaint during the cover of “Sneakin’ Sally”. Then in Charlotte NC during the Revs original “Soulfight”, and in Charleston SC sitting in during a cover of the Prince song “When Doves Cry”.   All of which received enormously high accolades from fans.

Video by Patrick Martin

Tonight’s sit-in was going to be one for the books. Tonight King would be sitting in during The Revivalists final song of the night, a mind-blowing version of the Allman Brothers song “Whipping Post” which The Revivalists have played many times before. It could be considered an honor to play one of the ABB’s most famous songs in the bands backyard of Macon Georgia. Tonight both band and guest took command of the classic and blew the roof off the Cox Capital Theatre.  You can also see in the video that Revivalist guitarist Zack Feinberg, an amazing guitarist himself, was in awe watching the kid conquer the leads like a master.

Video by Gary King

It was hoped that Marcus would be able to play the Gold Top for that song, but like kids and concerts, even legendary musical instruments have a curfew and the guitar had to be returned to the museum.   However, during his set with The Marcus King Band earlier, he was given the dream moment of a lifetime and played the treasured Gibson Les Paul for a stunning version of the ABB instrumental classic “In Memory of Elizabeth Reed” that had everyone one in the house in total astonishment. As you can tell in the video Marcus was on cloud nine.   Very few musicians get an opportunity like this without earning the status of legend-to-be themselves. It was clear on this night that Marcus King has the potential to be that legend. Yeah, this young man is the REAL DEAL!

As a longtime fan of Stevie Ray Vaughan, and also following the early and present careers of Jonny Lang and Kenny Wayne Sheppard, I am enormously thrilled to see young talent such as Marcus King take the reins and keep blues alive and well now and in the future.   To quote my friend who was at the show to witness the event in person “If Duane Allmans 1957 Gold Top Gibson Les Paul guitar was a torch it was passed tonight to Marcus King!”

I highly recommend any fan of live music, especially the blues, to make it your business to catch this guitar phenom when he is playing nearby.   For tour dates and band information please go to www.marcuskingband.com.

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