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Sat, 12 Aug


The Jazz Centre UK

Martin McNeill's Bottleneck Blues

A favourite Essex bluesman makes his Jazz Centre debut, with ace harp man West Weston in the band.

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Time & Location

12 Aug 2023, 14:00 – 16:00

The Jazz Centre UK, The Jazz Centre UK, Beecroft Art Gallery, Victoria Ave, Southend-on-Sea SS2 6EX, UK

About the Event


Martin McNeill (guitar/vocals)

West Weston (harmonica)

Roy Webber (drums)

JJ Zarbo (double bass)

Martin McNeill is an acclaimed slide guitarist and singer, helping keep alive the blues that started in the Mississippi Delta, migrated to Chicago and crossed the Atlantic to spark the British blues boom. He brings to the Jazz Centre a band featuring international harmonica star West Weston.

Martin's influences range from the raw slide guitar-driver blues of Muddy Waters and Elmore James, to the soulful sounds of Ray Charles and Sam Cooke, and the rocking rhythm and blues of Louis Jordan and Chuck Berry. Bottleneck Blues are one of the most experienced blues bands on the UK scene, with a healthy following in Southend built on a 13-year residency at the now closed Railway Hotel.

As a solo performer, Martin is a regular at the Ain't Nothin' But blues bar in Soho and at festivals including Rye Jazz & Blues, Dart Music and Swanage Blues. Martin has twice been a finalist in the the UK Blues Awards and was named best instrumentalist in the 2022 GSMC Music Awards.

Harmonica player West Weston is in demand internationally. He has recorded and toured with Roger Daltrey and Wilko Johnson, plays with Muddy Waters' son Mud Morganfield and with Scandinavian band Trickbag. He also leads his own band.

The Bottlenecks' long-time rhythm section is JJ Zarbo on double bass and Roy Webber on drums.

What they say about Martin McNeill:

“Love a slide guitar? This is one of the best exponents around” - Dart Festival programme.

“One of the country’s finest bottleneck blues guitarists” – Stephen Foster (BBC Suffolk/Radio Caroline presenter and gig promoter).

“Stunning guitarist” – Ashwyn Smyth (Digital Blues presenter).

“Renowned blues elder statesman” – Blues in Britain magazine

“Live excellence…Martin is so good. You’ll just look at your guitar after seeing him” – US bluesman Lightnin’ Willie.





  • Martin McNeill and Band

    From £6.00 to £12.00
    • £12.00
    • £6.00



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