Live at the Beaverwood Club

It’s not often you hear the greatest band in the world playing for your delectation only a few feet away and practically on your doorstep. How could this happen and who in blazes are we talking about?

Well it was the night guitarist, singer and songwriter Aynsley Lister held court with his trio at the Beaverwood Club, Chislehurst (December 3, 2023). During those magical hours on stage performing to a raptly attentive audience, they proved to be the best band you could possibly wish to hear. Certainly so if you love the sound of blues and rock music sung and played with panache, skill and heart warming sincerity.

Aynsley is the man who holds it all together and delights those loyal fans who have been flocking to the trio’s gigs on a recent tour of Germany and the U.K. However, it is the telepathic interplay with his fellow musicians that makes the Lister Experience such a rewarding…experience.

Many trios throughout rock history have been known for their disparate temperaments, leading to squabbles on stage and off. This combination however is motivated by mutual respect and friendship. And it’s great to witness the chemistry at work when Jonno Martin sings and plays his bass guitar with melodic flexibility and masterful drummer Craig Bacon controls the tempo and rhythmic mood to suit every tune.

The expectant crowd pushed ever closer to front of stage to catch their opening number the exultant ‘Everything I Need’ complete with a rockin’ riff from the album of the same name. The low down and dirty ‘Home’ (from Aynsley’s 2013 Home CD) was sung with the engaging style that pervades all of the composer’s songs.

He paused momentarily to chat to the fans emphasising it was nice to be back in Chislehurst after a freezing cold tour of snowy Germany. He promised them a: “A good mixture of stuff – old and new!”

‘Soundman’ a most menacing boogie blues that followed included those immortal lines: “Well excuse me please. You’re standing in my way. I don’t care who you are – they call me the Soundman and I’m having a real bad day. Hey, you over there turn that damn thing down, you don’t need it that damn loud. I’m the Soundman and I’ll pull your plugs right out!”

Well, having been deafened by Pete Townshend and sundry other guitarists over the years, I must say the Soundman’s illtemper is excusable. Whoever he was in real life, his advice was er – sound. An amplified electric guitar played at reasonable volume is all the more powerful as Mr. Lister shows every time he plugs in and grooves.


A moving ballad ‘Eve Pt.1’ from current album Along For The Ride (2022) complete with passionate solo was followed by that key changing and rockin’ ‘Quiet Boy!’ to which one can only say  –  yeah! Aynsley explained it was a shuffle blues in G that had some intricate drumming from Craig, notably when he soloed during a stop time chorus rapping sticks lightly on the rims of his snare drum. It was an effect so pleasing it drew smiles from compatriots and appreciative chuckles from the audience.

Next came a funky ‘Hyde 2612’ from Home (2013) with a dancing beat and a communal message that would appeal to 100,000 people at the next Glastonbury Festival.

The band’s second set commenced with ‘Free’ another splendid composition from Home with a dramatic intro that would make it a radio hit, if you sent in enough requests to your local DJ.

In fact there was a request from a fan for ‘Hurricane’ from Equilibrium (2009). “I didn’t catch his name but we will play it anyway” promised Aynsley.


A stomping ‘Falling Down’ upped the aggression as the show built towards a manic climax capped by ‘Running Out On Me and ‘Made Up My Mind. In the midst of all this Jonno Martin and Aynsley played a nifty bass and lead guitar duet as good humoured as it was ear catching. Aynsley: “Are there any Hendrix fans here tonight? I wrote this inspired by Jimi and it features Craig as well”.

When Mr. Lister launched into a foxy guitar intro we can rest assured Jimi would have loved it. Jonno sang backup vocals before Mr. Bacon launched into a superb solo that matched any performed by the giants of rock percussion. A barrage of high speed bass drum pedalling and cross hands tom-tomming reached an extraordinary climax that drew cheers from aficionados.

And so the Aynsley Lister Trio that often sounds more like a Blues Orchestra concluded with a Princely version of ‘Purple Rain.’ It was an evening when they truly ruled the sound waves, whatever The Soundman might say. CHRIS WELCH