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August 14, 2022

Dr. House plays gig in Bucharest: ‘It’s not lupus, it’s blues!’

The Bucharest gig was part of a tour for the promotion of ‘’Didn’t It Rain’’ album launched in May 2013.

Hugh Laurie and The Copper Bottom Band played wonderful blues and jazz at Palace Hall in the Romanian capital Saturday night, also sprinkled with old music history stories and a few small glasses of whisky, Agerpres informs.
Actor, author and musician Laurie has earned worldwide fame by the title role played in ‘Dr. House’, a misanthropist diagnostician genius, whose signature phrases also include ‘it’s not lupus’. Laurie performing in Bucharest was an impeccable, full of humour British musician, who put his band of outstanding instrument players at their best and told stories of the old blues or jazz songs they sang during the two-hour concert. ‘Thank you for coming here. I think you risk not knowing what to expect’, Laurie told the 4,000 audience at the start of the concert. “Many of you know I’m an actor. But my great passion is music. Well, it is as if you were on a plane and the pilot speaks to you: You know…I am a dental technician, in fact, but my great passion has always been flying. Of course you’d be nervous. But tonight your ‘flight’ is insured, because you are in the company of one of the best bands in the world – The Copper Bottom Band, Laurie said.
Laurie performed songs about which he often said on stage that are equally ‘very old’ and ‘very dear’. The evening’s set-list kicked off with ‘What a Man’, followed by ‘Let The Good Times Roll’, a piece at which the audience were encouraged to sing the refrain, then Italian music jewel piece ‘Buona Sera’ (Louis Prima) and ‘What Kind of Man are You’ (a Ray Charles cover) – a song that put one of the band’s two female vocalists, Jean McClain, to the focus.
Sitting behind the piano, in an atmosphere evoking an old jazz club, with table lamps that had oversized shades, Hugh Laurie was, at times, the musician singing jazz like crazy or the kind host putting in a joke for the public or the ‘guide’ to the music world that he and his band offered the public.
The concert stories mingled with the history of the song ‘El Choclo / Kiss Of Fire’, an Argentine tango that turned into a duet in Spanish and English between Laurie and Gaby Moreno up to ‘Send Me to the ‘Lectric Chair’, a cover after Bessie Smith. ‘For me, Bessie Smith is everything. As far as I am concerned, she might have invented the iPod too’, Laurie confessed.
At one time during the concert, the musician drank a toast, after having served his stage fellows with small glasses of whisky. This moment also had its story, obviously. Said Laurie: When I first went to meet those in The Copper Bottom Band, I was nervous…it was about sacred monsters of music. So that, in order to soften the situation a little, I went with a bottle of whisky. Now that I think of it, it was a stupid thing to do, because we speak of musicians, therefore, in principle, alcoholics in rehab. But they drank my whisky, so I thought they are either not alcoholics, or have not yet got to rehab… so our toast has become a tradition. They drank to the audience’s health, happiness and prosperity and they paused to savour the drink leaning on their musical instruments, while ambient music was completing the moment.

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