If you're ever in doubt of an artist's credibility, take a close look at the company he keeps or, more importantly, the company that keeps him. While guitarist and producer Doyle Bramhall II's credibility has never exactly been on trial, we do believe it's time for the dude to really get the fanfare and credit he deserves as a contemporary guitar hero, which has surely been a long time coming.
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The unfortunate reality is that Bramhall has spent the lion's share of his career operating as a foil for some of the most revered guitar heroes and rock stars of all time — most notably Eric Clapton — and it's tough to stand out amid the hero worship his bosses generally command. Though most Clapton cognoscenti are well aware of Bramhall's exploits and abilities, he absolutely deserves far more attention than he receives. As a guitarist, Bramhall is one of the most gifted bluesmen of his generation and, in our opinion, the true heir to the Texas blues throne that formerly belonged to Stevie Ray Vaughan (whom Bramhall's father frequently collaborated with).
Bramhall has also played the role of Roger Water's lead guitarist (read: a worthy replacement for David Gilmour) and has been selected to perform on the high-profile Experience Hendrix tour alongside some of the most important guitarists alive to pay tribute to the legend of Jimi Hendrix.
Bramhall is currently working on a highly anticipated new solo album but will be taking a break to do some touring with his solo group this month, and South Florida has the good fortune to have been granted an opportunity to see the man rip it in the flesh at the Culture Room on Friday — a show not to be missed! If you're not willing to take our word for it, you should at least consider the word of Bramhall's famous bosses.
Doyle Bramhall II
8 p.m. Saturday, September 12, at Culture Room, 3045 N. Federal Highway, Fort Lauderdale. Tickets cost $20. Call 954-564-1074, or visit cultureroom.net.