Rob Hughes Quartet featuring Shamus Dark

Crypt-St Martins- Rob and Shamus

'I first heard Shamus Dark in the intimate late night setting that was the Map Café in Kentish Town. Shamus was accompanied by sympathetic, atmospheric, imaginative and consummate musicians in the shape of Rob Hughes (saxophones and flute), Rick Laughlin (piano and keyboards) and Paul Harvey (guitar). Shamus and his cohorts took me into a twilight world, a world of film noir, with a series of atmospheric songs, mainly, but by no means exclusively (for example, a notable exception was “Hey You” courtesy of late 70s Pink Floyd), from the forties and fifties. All the songs had a timeless quality that transcended genre, era and style. Notable examples of genre-busting included Country great Hank Williams’ “Weary Blues (From Waiting”), originally recorded by Shamus on his first album Songs for Suicidal Lovers and, from his second album Trouble in Paradise, “Trust in Me”, a song which first saw the light of day in the film of the late 60s The Jungle Book.

                         As well as purchasing the two albums with alacrity, I very quickly visited YouTube to re-visit my experience. (Tom Waites, take note on how Shamus touches your heights, without imitation and arguably more subtle humour, on that classic song “You’ve Changed”, originally performed by Dick Haymes with the Harry James Orchestra in 1941).

Go, preferably with a friend or three, to see these masterly musicians on Wednesday 15th June 2016 at The Café In The Crypt St Martin-In-The-Fields Trafalgar Square London WC2N 4JJ.

Review by Bryan Collins.

 

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