Friday 16.09.2022 / 20:30 h
Limited Edition - Only Concert in Europe - The Guitar Player of the Fabulous Thunderbirds with a Texas All-Star Band
Johnny Moeller presents the Moeller Brothers feat. Paul Size & Mike Barfield (USA)
Johnny Moeller has been on Groove Now's wish list for 10 years. He is one of the few musicians who we have not been able to present, until now. It is not easy to bring him to Europe for the relatively simple reason that Johnny is the guitarist for Kim Wilson’s legendary band – The Fabulous Thunderbirds. He therefore always has to consider the concert dates of the “T-Birds” first.
We are therefore extremely fortunate that after many years and tireless efforts, Groove Now has managed to bring this great guitarist and musician to Europe for an exclusive concert in Basel. With Johnny we were able to define a great program – a program with musicians who have accompanied Johnny for a lifetime. In addition to his brother and drummer Jay (the brothers together are also known as The Moeller Brothers), the great guitarist Paul Size will also take the stage. Last but not least, Johnny brings along singer, Mike Barfield, who is unfortunately, not yet known to us.
Johnny is from Fort Worth, Texas. He was born in 1970 and grew up in a musical family. He heard a lot of blues and soul growing up. Rock music also flowed from the radio. At the same time, he immersed himself in the music of the great jazz guitarist Grant Green. While still in high school, he played in clubs in Dallas and Fort Worth. The blues was and always remains the compass of Johnny's music.
In the summer, when Johnny and his younger brother who played the drums were 16 and 15 years old, they played in Austin’s legendary club Antone’s. Its owner - Clifford Antone - who played a key role in Stevie Ray Vaughan's career, speaks highly about Johnny Moeller: “Johnny, nobody can burn like that kid. He's got the heart like Stevie had, about the only one I've seen with that kind of heart. Johnny's so quiet and bashful, just a sweet kid and sometimes those kids get overlooked.”
Anyone who has seen Johnny Moeller live will not soon forget him – his guitar playing is extremely dynamic – he masters all forms of guitar playing while at the same time incorporating numerous styles. He is hardly comparable to any other guitarist. His guitar playing sings, swings, grooves, and rocks. Johnny plays and amalgamation of different musical styles –funk, soul, blues and rock'n'roll. He plays chords and solos that are more reminiscent of a piano or even jazz. It doesn't fit in a drawer. He is influenced by Freddie King, Earl King, Lightnin’ Hopkins, Grant Green and the Vaughan brothers. However, if you are looking to find links between his playing style and that of other Texans like Albert Collins or Stevie Ray Vaughan, you will simply not find them.
Johnny Moeller has appeared on numerous albums and has immortalized his distinctive licks, for example on recordings by Darrell Nulisch, Lou Pride, Steve Guyger or Tad Robinson. He has been a T-Bird with Kim Wilson's Fabulous Thunderbirds since 2007. Johnny has three solo albums from 2010 – "The Return of the Funky Worm", "Johnny’s Blues Aggregation" and "Bloogaloo!". Johnny lives with his wife and three children in Austin, where he mostly plays local gigs when he is not on the road with the T-Birds.
The other great guitarist on stage, Paul Size, is from Dallas and has been a member of the legendary band “The Red Devils” for three years. Paul has played with world-famous musicians such as Mick Jagger, Los Lobos, The Allman Brothers, The Black Crowes, Doyle Bramhall and Doyle Bramhall II. ZZ top legend Billy Gibbons thinks Paul is one of the ten best guitarists he has ever seen – a superlative that is hard to beat.
Johnny’s drum-playing brother – Jay – was also a “T-Bird” a few years ago. Besides his brother Johnny, Jay plays with many other Texas musicians including Shawn Pittman. Jay has also contributed to Gary Clark Jr.'s recordings.
With Mike Barfield, Johnny brings another comrade to Basel, with whom he has played for many years. Mike is rather unknown in Europe. He has a great voice and a big presence on stage. Mike embodies the Memphis blues and soul in the style of Tony Joe White. He also likes to move on stage in the style of James Brown.
Johnny is currently working on one project with his brother and Paul Size and on two other projects with Mike Barfield, which will surely be an important part of the show in Basel.
For this concert, the bass will be played by one of the many great Texas bass players that will be decided on by Johnny at relatively short notice. In any case, we can look forward to a musical firework display that is rarely seen in Europe - if at all. For this reason, we are particularly pleased that our years of efforts have paid off and that we were able to tear Johnny away from the “T-Birds” for his only concert in Europe.
The lucky ticket holders of this concert can look forward to great musicians and musical fireworks.
Johnny Moeller - Guitar, Vocals
Jay Moeller - Drums, Vocals
Paul Size - Guitar
Mike Barfield - Vocals, Shakers
Tbd - Bass
Friday, September 16, 2022
Atlantis, Klosterberg 13, Basel
Door opening: 20:00
Concert start: 20:30
Tickets: CHF 69
No seating guaranteed!