The Future Juke festival continues to bring excellent shows and following on from last week’s superb set by Cedric Burnside, last night was the turn of Eli ‘Paperboy’ Reed and he put on a brilliant belt of Stax-tinged soul complete with a superb horn section.

I reviewed Reed’s latest – ‘99c Dreams’ – a few weeks back and it left me wanting to see what he could bring to the small stage at Dingwalls – what he brought was over an hour of top quality music, laced with passion and no little humour and with material stretching back over his 10 year career span.

The material from ‘99c Dreams’ was instantly familiar, especially a swinging and funky ‘Bank Robber’ and the title track which worked perfectly in the live environs and he had the full crowd dancing (wherever there was space) to a gorgeous ‘Your Sins Will Find You Out’. My personal favourite was the sweet-soul ‘You Coulda Had This’ which really shows off his singing to its best.

The band throughout were excellent but Reed is the front man and even when a brilliant tenor sax solo takes the ear, he is what the eye drifts to – a consummate bandleader.

He was chatty as well, talking to the crowd between numbers about last years show at the 100 Club (most of the audience seem to have been there) and his feelings about 10 years in the business – all really warmed the crowd to his infectious personality.
Support for the evening was a fine set of 50’s style Blues from Big Joe Louis. Just guitar and bass this time around, he has a massive sound and really warmed the crowd up with his music.
Between sets DJ Greg Belson played some classic soul and some real obscurities.

A terrific night, great music and Future Juke keeps rolling.