Written by Eddie Ferranti

076It is amazing how much Texas festivals we have visited over the years continue to spawn good acts to follow up on.  Viva Big Bend Fest in Alpine, Texas gave us tonight’s act Nakia. We caught him in 2013 and this time he brought along a five piece backing band called the Blues Grifters. Drums, keys, horns, electric lead and bass all in tow in suave looking suit action.  Nakia had some hotzy totzy red shoes and a tie that helped him stand out although it was a given who would stand out here!
Three songs in he had worked up a sweat on “Honky Tonk Man” which had a Bob Segerish swagger to it.  The blues flowed on “Red Dress Baby” along with “Oh I Love You Baby”. You can tell Nakia has had stage experience in plays like Rocky Horror Picture Show and The Music Man where he lays out the “ham and egg” routine- in a good way-to the max prowling the stage like an out of control bear.
133Dude knows he has a great backing band and he gave them plenty of room to let it rip to the audience who’ve was digging it big time!  Small wonder Rolling Stone dubbed him a “bear who could sing!”  HA!  This band has the look of a jazz outfit, but really sound hippy rocking blues to the nitty gritty bone if you will. Soulful gems like “Chocolate Drop”, “Woman Don’t Lie”, and “Can’t Do My Homework” really brought home the bacon.
Nakia said he was just getting warmed up literally by stripping off his jacket and rolling up his sleeves for the “stretch run”. He really became a stage owning SumBitch wailing in all octaves!  Breathing husky and donning shades all night he burned it up on “She Got All the Money” and Gladys Knight fave “Keep on Keeping On”.  His talents were personified by the always excellent sound and vocals at this vintage venue. The electric guitar soared as he sprinted to the finish line with “Somebody Sleeping In My Bed”, “She Was a Good Girl” and show stopping EPIC rendition of Allman Brothers classic “Whipping Post”! This song alone was worth the price of admission folks. He is on tap to play the 8th Wonder Brewery in Houston on July 21 and let’s hope Rusty brings him back for an encore here sooner rather than later………
Eddie “Edge” Ferranti

Senior Editor

Houston Music Review