Bonnie Raitt & Taj Mahal – Blues & Brews Festival, CO

Mother Nature revved up her pitching arm and treated the the audience to rain, hail and a few tiny snowflakes while Bonnie Raitt, Taj Mahal and their respective bands rocked on through the weather during their Sunday night closing set at the Telluride Blues & Brews Festival.

While their repertoire hasn’t changed much on the BonTaj Roulet tour, they certainly brought their best to the stage on Sunday night, even with the high altitude (“Walking up a hill and thinking you’re in shape is different from singing,” Bonnie laughed).

Joking between songs about the rapidly changing weather, Bonnie said “Britney, look out!” and then later clarified for the fans listening on the radio that, “the cheering isn’t because I’m really stripping.”

Bringing Taj out for I’m Satisfied before the rain started pouring and people began scurrying for cover she said, “I take it there’s been a weather shift, and now I can watch you get dressed.”

Taking a short break during the hail storm, she and her band (George Marinelli on guitars, Ricky Fataar on drums, Ricky Peterson on keyboards and Hutch Hutchinson on bass) returned with Bonnie saying, “You guys live in a while place. That was refreshing, I hope you were prepared.”

With the two bands (Taj brought the Texicali Horns and his Phantom Blues Band) combined and the weather clearing up, Bonnie and Taj sang their playful rendition of Tramp and Taj’s She Caught The Katy and the Calypso Rose song, WAH SHE GO DO.

After Gnawin’ On It Bonnie teased, “I love being Taj’s ‘Little Queenie,’ he’s my big ole gnawin’ on it dog.”

They ended their show and the festival with Coming Home / TV Mama, dedicated to the blues greats such as Koko Taylor and Johnny Lee Hooker and a final “thank you” for supporting roots music and keeping the blues alive.

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