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SOUTHSIDE JOHNNY AND THE ASBURY JUKES (The Robin, tonight)

01-10-2008

Southside Johnny

Wonderful Black Country venue hosts top veteran rockers. No surprise there, then. Dave Woodhall sets the scene for New Jersey’s (second) finest.

What are you doing tonight? If you've nothing sorted you could do a lot worse than heading down the M6, the A41 or whichever road might take you to Bilston, start off with a couple of pints in the Old White Rose, then move on to the Robin for the annual return of Southside Johnny & the Asbury Jukes.

One of those bands you've heard of but don't know much about, the Jukes are a perfect antidote to the manufactured pop and unreliable prima donnas you might otherwise spend your hard-earned watching.

Famously described as “the band Springsteen hopes he's leading when he gets to the encores,” they share New Jersey roots with Bruce, and their attitude towards the audience is much the same – you're going to enjoy yourself and if you don't, it isn't their fault.

With a rock-tight rhythm section and the hottest horns north of Memphis backing the eponymous Southside Johnny Lyon, one of the few Americans with a sense of humour, a good night is guaranteed for all.

Well, except maybe the Robin staff, who might have to put in a marathon shift if the band are enjoying themselves, as a Jukes set can last anything up to three hours on a good night.

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