Terry Reid is a name that needs little introduction. As the now-famous utterance from Aretha Franklin stated, “There are only three things happening in England: The Rolling Stones, the Beatles, and Terry Reid.” That’s a pretty potent statement and not one to be taken lightly. Superlungs, as he’s affectionately called, is one of the greatest rock ‘n’ soul voices that the other side of the pond has ever offered the musical public at large. As is often said, a Terry Reid concert should be a cherished memory for any self-respecting fan of the greats of British music, and now you have the opportunity to catch him right in our own backyard.
Reid will be coming to Asbury Park on May 1 for a rare performance at The Wonder Bar. Joining Reid will be longtime musician, singer Deborah Bonham (sister of John Bonham) and her magical band of merrymakers. Also on the bill will be New Jersey’s own Matt O’Ree Band. There is so much to read up on when discussing Terry Reid or Deborah Bonham. I decided to stick with what was sent to me, but much can be gleaned by going online and going search crazy.
Not one to snap up the glitzy trappings of fame and fortune, Reid is notoriously famous for turning down singing gigs, first with Led Zeppelin (referring them to friend Robert Plant instead), as well as giving a similar rebuff to Deep Purple. Some of his more well-known gigs include two world tours with Cream, U.K. tours with Jethro Tull and Fleetwood Mac, the Isle of Wight Festival of 1969, and Glastonbury in 1970. He also played at Mick Jagger’s wedding, before record deals gone wrong resulted in Terry leaving the U.K. for American pastures. While here in the States, Reid teamed up with the legendary Tom Dowd to rework the music for Reid’s The River.
Reid’s story also includes numerous collaborations with Graham Nash, covers of Reid songs by Marianne Faithful, the Hollies, the Raconteurs (the hugely popular “Rich Kid Blues”,) soundtracks, a song in George Clooney’s Up in the Air, and a catalogue of six studio albums—including the seminal The River, re-released to critical acclaim in 2002—and the 1976 Nash-produced Seed of a Memory. “Horse through the Rainstorm,” a solid Reid-written song, was also featured on CSN’s box set.
After all that, he’s still in the trenches, living the life of a performing musician and teaming up with others to deliver sonic sounds and intricate lyrical offerings to those long-time fans, as well as the new and curious alike.
Speaking of teaming up, joining Terry will be Deborah Bonham, sister to legendary Led Zeppelin drummer John Bonham. Deborah has contributed more than her share of musical accreditations. Most people might flinch under the pressure of having such a famous brother, but not Deborah. She actively embraces all things Bonham and has recently delivered an impassioned performance in her hometown of Redditch as part of a day-long celebration to mark the unveiling of a bronze memorial dedicated to her brother John. Deborah herself has been working on this project for the last few years with renowned sculptor Mark Richards and several anonymous collaborators. The memorial is to mark John’s life on what would have been his 70th year on Earth.
Deborah also stays busy with her own musical explorations. Her influential band contains many names that have shared the stage and studio with the likes of Paul Rodgers, Robert Plant, Steve Marriott, Freddie Mercury, and Rory Gallagher. She has recently returned from a two-month engagement, entitled the “Stars Align” tour, with Paul Rodgers, Jeff Beck, and Ann Wilson from Heart. Deborah opened every show in addition to supporting Paul Rodgers and his band in the headliner’s slot. Both Deborah and her group received phenomenal reviews on this tour, and they went on to perform with Rodgers across the USA. The 2018 release of Strange Angels: In Flight with Elmore James (produced by Marco Giovino) features Deborah collaborating with luminaries such as Tom Jones, Billy Gibbons, and Warren Haynes, to name a few.
Also on board at the Wonder Bar will be the Matt O’Ree Band. O’Ree is still reaping good benefits from his 2016 release, Brotherhood, and I’m sure many songs from that blistering LP will be on full display. I haven’t spoken with Matt about future plans and the road, but I’m pretty sure that besides his own group and their full schedule, he’ll be assisting some other rock star on tour someday soon. But that’s not verified or sanctioned by O’Ree and company yet.
Any way you slice it, Terry Reid is a bonafide rock and roll legend, and this is the perfect time to see him here in the Garden State. The combination and fire of Deborah Bonham and the grit and sass of Matt O’Ree Band make this the show of the year down in Asbury Park. Wonder Bar doors are at 7 p.m. and tickets are available through Ticketmaster directly. Ages 21+.
Be sure to catch Terry Reid, Deborah Bonham, and the Matt O’Ree Band on May 1 at the Wonder Bar in Asbury Park. For information, go to wonderbarasburypark.com. For more information on Terry Reid, head over to terryreid.com, and for more on Deborah Bonham and Matt O’Ree, visit deborahbonham.com and mattoree.com.