Jack Broadbent at the City Winery in Chicago, IL

It was a night full of witty charm and singer-songwriters as Jack Broadbent and Benjamin Jaffe brought their show to Chicago’s City Winery.

There’s no better way to get rid of the Monday blues than sitting back, with a glass of wine in hand in a candlelit room while listening to two very talented and entertaining musicians.

This was the last night of Jack Broadbent‘s tour with Ben Jaffe as the opener. The last time we saw Ben was on this very stage as one half of the band honeyhoney. These days, he’s stepping out solo with a different sound but with the same easy wit and charm his fans have come to know and love. 

Throughout Jaffe’s set, he seemed completely at ease on stage as he set the scene for the songs, explaining the narrative arc that weaved through his set. His anecdotes often left people giggling as he started playing. However, once the songs begin, they are so well written, both musically and lyrically, that you are drawn into the world Ben has created. 

It’s worth noting that an opening slot only affords Ben the chance to provide a stripped-down version of his vision for these songs. The full immersive experience will involve video and a number of other musicians to help him tell the story the way he wants it to be told. Hopefully, he will get the chance to take that show on the road in the near future. 

Jaffe is no stranger to us here at Loud Hailer, and we are really excited to see what lies ahead for him.

Despite being only his second time in Chicago, Jack Broadbent clearly is developing a strong following here already. He clearly draws influences from a wide range of troubadour/rock n’ roll/blues artists and plays some of the finest slide guitar you’ll hear (which is saying something in Chicago). This all blends together to create a truly unique sound. For one man seated on stage, armed only with his two guitars and a hip flask slide, he managed to fill the room with both his music and personality and hold the audience transfixed for the duration of his set. 

If you haven’t heard of him yet, we’re pretty sure you soon will. This current headlining tour is sandwiched between him coming off touring with Ronnie Wood and then joining Peter Frampton for the second time on his farewell tour from May 24. His most recent album and fourth to date, Moonshine Blue, was self-released on his own label, Creature Records, in November 2019 and is a fantastic demonstration of what the man is about.

It’s great to see artists like Broadbent stretching the boundaries of the blues genre in different directions. Along with the likes of Davy Knowles, Gary Clark Jr, and Larkin Poe, Broadbent will help keep the genre relevant and bring it to a wider audience. This could be seen by just looking at the broad age range of those in attendance on Monday night. 

With so many shows and events being canceled by the dreaded coronavirus at the moment, we have to enjoy those that are still going ahead. For just a few hours on Monday, the audience at City Winery was able to leave the contaminated world outside and let two talented musicians do their thing and take them to a much nicer place. If they are still on the road in the weeks to come, and it’s safe for you to do so, we suggest you do the same thing.  

JACK BROADBENT
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BEN JAFFE
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CITY WINERY
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About Kirstine Walton 220 Articles
Kirstine moved from the UK to Chicago in 2011, and has fallen in love with the city and its music scene. She enjoys combining her two biggest passions – music and photography. If there is a band with a guitar playing, chances are she’ll be there…camera in hand. Kirstine went to her first live concert at 7 years old, and hasn’t looked back since!