When blues music became an unexpected goodbye
The Dudes was a local blues band performing live in Chiang Mai, Thailand. Phil Elpers was the singer from the band with Harris Moore and Oliver Benjamin on guitar, David Williams on bass and Yves Boder on drums. Special guests on this concert are Roddy Lorimer on trumpet and Craig Smith on saxophone. They bring a blues mixture of cover songs from The Rolling Stones, to Stevie Wonder and Marvin Gaye. All very experienced musicians who enjoy the blues music and decided to stage a tribute with a concert at Jazz Cafe in Chiang Mai. It was a memorable night with a unique set. Little did anybody know that this concert was the last of the band.
The passing of a great blues singer
Phil Elpers has been a well-known musician living in Chiang Mai for many years. He used to perform weekly in his favourite bar ‘Lost Hut’ located at Moon Muang road. He was a unique character that never impersonated to be the blues: he simply was the blues.
At the very beginning of the global covid19 epidemic in early April 2020, the sad news came out that singer Phil Elpers passed away. One night he posted an alarming message on his Facebook page saying he was in some sort of trouble as a result of falling. Friends went to check on him and he was brought to the hospital where he died later on from complications. The blues man was gone and left the live music scene in Chiang Mai devastated. At that moment the city was still in lockdown mode, so no gatherings were allowed.
Watch The Dudes Live at Jazz Cafe Chiang Mai
The start of a new band with the other musicians
After the loss of the main singer Phil Elpers, the musicians from The Dudes started another band: The Jolly Lamas. This time the main singer is Roddy Lorimer. Combining the piano with voice and playing trumpet solos is a huge challenge and that is why it is as times really fantastic to see The Jolly Lamas perform. It is all done as if it is easy!