The Alfie Kingston Duo are a professional acoustic covers act with many years of experience on the pub, club and function circuit in Bristol, Bath, the South West and further afield. The duo are impressing audiences across the country with their unique take on rock and pop classics such as The Cure’s ‘Friday I’m In Love’ or Norman Greenbaum's 'Spirit In The Sky'. Their quality acoustic set also takes in 80’s pop-rock like Michael Jackson’s ‘Leave Me Alone’ and Def Leppard’s ‘Animal’, as well recent alt-rock hits like The Killer’s ‘Human’, complemented by selections of a more laid-back vibe including faithful renditions of Beatles and Beach Boys standards.
Such a large and varied repertoire of popular songs, delivered with skilled guitar interplay and augmented by frontman Alfie Kingston's natural charisma and instinct to entertain, make the duo's twin acoustic guitar sound and vocal harmonies ideal live music for a wedding or birthday party, equally suited to a two hour party performance or an intimate after dinner session.
Whatever the reason for hiring a live band one can count on the versatility of the duo's sound and on their professionalism. The Alfie Kingston Duo are keen supporters of live music in all its forms, thus their acoustic arrangements of classic rock and pop covers are performed as music was meant to be performed: 100% live with no pre-recorded backing tracks. Frontman Alfie is a successful singer songwriter in his own right, with airplay on BBC Radio 2 and extremely positive reviews in many respected online music publications, as well as a qualified sound engineer- the duo providing their own quality P.A. system and lighting rig. Over the years the Alfie Kingston Duo have become a popular alternative to booking a rock band or DJ for any occasion.
"Top acoustic act. Two contrasting personalities combine to give you a fantastic and entertaining evening out" www.bristolrock.co.uk
"When Alfie and Chris turn up, you know you're going to have a good night. The simplicity of their arrangement, the skill of delivery, the choice of material and the quality of their sound leave most other acoustic duos in the dirt. You can't beat a bit of Bristol stage-banter either!"
Jay Marsh, Promoter at The Selkirk, London. www.theselkirk.co.uk
"Our Cricket Club booked them for a Dinner & Dance & the guys did a brilliant set - lots of well known covers, older ones for the wrinklys & plenty of new stuff for the kids"
Simon Gould, Chairman. The Old Down Cricket Club www.olddowncricketclub.co.uk
Aerosmith - Pink Beach Boys, The - Then I Kissed Her Beatles, The - Hide Your Love Away Beatles, The - Norwegian Wood Beatles, The - Drive My Car Bon Jovi - You Give Love A Bad Name Bowie, David - Man Who Sold The World Bowie, David - Ziggy Stardust Bread - Everything I Own Coral, The - Pass It On Cure, The - Friday I'm In Love Del Amitri - Nothing Ever Happens Dylan, Bob - Knocking On Heavens Door Faces, The - Ooh La La Four Non Blondes - Whats Up? Greenbaum, Norman - Spirit In The Sky Green Day - Welcome To Paradise Guns 'N' Roses - Sweet Child O' Mine Jackson, Michael - Leave Me Alone Jam, The - Thats Entertainment Jam, The - Town Called Malice Killers, The - Human Metallica - Nothing Else Matters (Instrumental) Osbourne, Joan - What If God Was One Of Us R.E.M - Losing My Religion R.E.M - The One I Love Stealers Wheel - Stuck In the Middle With You Therapy? - Die Laughing Toploader - Dancing In The Moonlight T-Rex - 20th Century Boy Undertones, The - Teenage Kicks Wonder, Stevie - Misstra Know It All Young, Neil - Keep On Rockin' In The Free World
Songs On Request Buggles, The - Video Killed The Radio Star Deep Purple - Smoke On The Water Frank Turner - Photosynthesis Lighthouse Family - High Martyn, John - May You Never McTell, Ralph - Steets Of London Nilsson, Harry - Everybody's Talkin' Oasis - Half The World Away Ritter, Josh - Harrisburg White Stripes - Seven Nation Army
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Alfie Kingston Covers Duo
Alfie Kingston Duo @ The Wellington, Bristol.
I wouldn't normally choose to go out on a cold, wet and windy Sunday night but I've seen the Alfie Kingston Duo (AKD) play at the Wellington before and it's a gig that I know will be well worth the effort. Plenty of other people thought the same way because the pub is surprisingly busy for such a wet night.
Alfie & James have been playing for a few years now and their reputation on the pub and club circuit, not only in Bristol but all over the South West, draws a crowd that keeps coming back for more.
Contrasting in characters, James is a quiet, enigmatic head down musician whose face is usually covered with a curtain of hair while he's playing. James rarely speaks but doesn't have to, the instrument does the talking with carefully crafted and fluid lead guitar ranging from delicate and sensitive picking to full on runs and string bends more usually seen on the narrow neck of a screaming electric guitar but this is an intense experience performed acoustically.
Alfie on the other hand is the charismatic front man of the two on vocals and guitar who enjoys and encourages audience interaction. He likes to sit on a high stool with his feet on the monitor with a supply of lager close to hand. Most people will know Alfie as a well respected sound engineer and promoter and he mixes the AKDs sound himself with the obvious result that the sound is always first class and tonight is no exception. The understanding between Alfie and James built up over the years of playing live together has created a tight, solid and impressive performance that suggests bigger stages and large capacity crowds.
I manage to get a seat close to the front before the start of the first set and I'm lucky, any empty seats are quickly taken once they start playing and after the first couple of songs the crowd from the back of the bar have moved forward to get a better look. A cover of Guns 'N' Roses, Sweet Child O' Mine livens up the crowd and performed in fine AKD style. Alfie and James don't do the usual covers by numbers like most other bands; they take good, often classic songs, keep the essence of what made them that way in the first place and then add their own take to produce something unique to the AKD. They obviously enjoy what they do and they do it well.
Between songs, Alfie's cheeky stories amuse the audience and he describes the next song as being about sleeping with a girl and then burning her house down, the song turns out to be the Beatles standard, Norwegian Wood which starts with a twin guitar intro that the crowd instantly recognise.
The set veers from classic pop to some of the best acoustic rock you'll hear anywhere. Its a sad fact of life that pub audiences like to hear things they know which is way the AKD usually include only a couple of their own songs in the set list. Alfie is a recording artist in his own right with a current and very fine album, Creatures & People's Ways and a couple of the songs from the album get an outing tonight. Alfie takes a drink from his glass and a trickle of lager runs down the body of his guitar from a drip on the bottom of the glass as he explains that the song, one of his own called She's Scary, is about how a girl is fine for the first couple of years of a relationship but after that she starts to change. The other original, It's Easy, is an anthem that would go down well in a muddy field at the Glasto Festival in front of a swaying crowd of thousands but tonight it's equally well received by an up for it Bristol pub audience.
The AKD play two sets and both contain an amazing selection of songs from the likes of Bob Dylan to David Bowie, R.E.M to the Rolling Stones and lots more; the catalogue is a rich and exciting musical feast. Looking around the crowd, people sing along with the lyrics and a woman who's clearly been enjoying the ale on offer comes to the front and dances in front of the stage. When she turns to me and tries to drag me up to dance, I politely decline her kind offer.
The bell for last orders comes around all too quickly and with a noisy crowd demanding more, Alfie thanks the audience and says they look forward to coming back again and I hope they will. The AKD have had a busy touring schedule in 2008 and no doubt 2009 dates are filling up quickly.
So, would I make the effort to come out again on a cold and wet night to see the AKD? Goes without saying, I certainly would and I know the rest of the audience will be back as well.