Thursday, March 7, 2013

Michael Des Barres at Bowery Electric

British-born Michael Des Barres was on the verge of rock stardom several times, with Silverhead (1971-1974), Detective (1975-1978), the Chequered Past (1982-1985), the Power Station (1985) and as the leader of his own band, the Michael Des Barres Band. Beginning in the 1960s, he juggled his music with an acting career that included roles in the movies To Sir with Love, Ghoulies, Pink Cadillac and Midnight Cabaret, and in television shows including WKRP in Cincinatti, the Rockford Files, Hart to Hart, MacGyver, Roseanne, Seinfeld, L.A. Law, Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman, Northern Exposure, Ellen, Nash Bridges, Melrose Place, Charmed, Gilmore Girls, Frasier, JAG, Alias, Nip/Tuck, NCIS and Bones. He returned to music in 2012 with the album Carnaby Street.

Des Barres returned to New York tonight and sang with a pickup band at Bowery Electric. He’s still got it, folks. His blues-rock set included his newer music, a song from his days with Detective and covers of the Velvet Underground’s “White Light, White Heat,” Humble Pie’s “I Don’t Need No Doctor,” T. Rex’s “Bang a Gong (Get it On),” and Little Richard’s “Long Tall Sally.” It was all standard rock and roll from the 4/4 beat to the 12-bar blues song structure, with Des Barres singing and playing guitar well. There is still life in this 64-year-old rocker.

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