Jools Holland at The Barbican

Jools Holland and his Rhythm and Blues Orchestra returned to the York Barbican on November 7th to deliver a night of musical delights to the audience.

By Ellen Cole


As well as playing the piano, Jools managed to direct the show and introduced the audience to each member of his band, who each took centre stage in performing a short solo piece. The evening was filled with a wide range of musical genres including blues, jazz and ska, with every guest singer giving beautiful and powerful renditions of each song that they performed. Gilson Lavis’s drum solo was full of energy and enthusiasm which the fans applauded greatly, and by this point the audience would probably have gone home happily, but the biggest surprise was yet to come.

The last guest singer for the evening was the legendary Ruby Turner, who with her stunning and strong soul voice almost turned the York Barbican into a Baptist church. Everyone got on their feet and the power of her voice was pure electric. Her vocals were rich in tone, and she seemed to know how to connect with every song and audience member – making them feel as if she was singing the song just for them individually.

By the end of the evening, every single person in the audience (including those on the balcony) were on their feet dancing the night away. There was also plenty of fan participation in terms of singing words back to the band and clapping along with songs, and the audience sure were not shy about getting involved with the performance. All in all, a wondrous night and one that will hopefully be repeated again soon!


Jools Holland and his Rhythm and Blues Orchestra played at The Barbican on Saturday 7 November 2015