Johnny A Driven
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Worcester Magazine Review

Friday, April 25, 2014 at Mechanics Hall.
Steven King/Worcester Magazine

Johnny A. and his new band took the stage next, and after the first few songs, he admitted to the audience a touch of jitters, with all new band members and new songs. He need not have worried, as the band was tight as nails from the first note. Drummer Marty Richards, in particular, impressed. With no singer in the band, Johnny A. took on the difficult task of keeping the audience captive through an entire set of instrumentals. And captive they were, as Johnny blazed across the guitar neck, his fingers forming every possible chord imaginable, while controlling his many guitar effects to perfection. It was a stew of virtuosity that left the crowd in awe.
Two songs in particular stood out to me. In The Beatles' ballad “Yes It Is,” Johnny’s guitar tones were drippingly gorgeous, and playing the song instrumentally really brings out the raw beauty of the melody. “You Don’t Love Me,” the blues standard, was given a highly creative treatment, utilizing a half-time rhythm and some interesting sexy stops, combined with extreme soft/loud dynamics. Of course, Johnny A. also did his radio hit “Oh Yeah!” to perfection.

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