Terry Adams - keyboards, vocals, wind; Al Anderson - guitar, vocals; Tom Ardolino - drums; Joey Spaminato - bass, vocals; Keith Spring - tenor sax; Donn Adams - trombone
The one thing that you could always expect at an NRBQ show was not knowing what to expect. Talk about a musical mystery... this great little rock band was anything but a rock band. They played anything and everything under the sun, from rock to R&B to free form jazz to pure country. Whatever struck their fancy, they did it, and usually with a healthy dose of humor. Needless to say, NRBQ was remarkably difficult to market, but with the right team behind them, they could have been as big as the Band.
NRBQ, which stands for the New Rhythm & Blues Quartet (a take-off on the Modern Jazz Quartet), have been thrilling its cult, but extremely loyal, fan base since 1969. Formed initially in Kentucky, only Terry Adams and Joey Spampinato remains from the original line-up, but the version of the band featured here stayed together for over 20 years, and became a mainstay at select profile clubs around the country from the mid-1970s through the early 1990s.
Although the band has been signed to at least six major labels, they were on Mercury during this time frame and it was during these years that NRBQ saw its greatest commercial success. Although they never had a huge hit single on their own, NRBQ did hang with the biggest musical names in rock, including Keith Richards of the Rolling Stones and Bonnie Raitt, who covered some of the band's songs. Although many feel the band lost its magic when Al Anderson left in 1994, they have remained an ongoing musical legacy, having released their last studio album in 1998.
Among the highlights of this Bottom Line show captured for the King Biscuit Flower Hour are "Honey Hush" (a remake of the blues classic) and "Green Light" which Bonnie Raitt covered.