Billy Hector | Photo by Noah Silvestry for WXPN | silvestography.com
XPN Fest Recap: Guitar solos and scenic skylines during Billy Hector
The Riverstage at Wiggins Park is made for rockstars. Behind it lays a stunning backdrop of the Philadelphia skyline and Ben Franklin Bridge; in front sits hundreds of colorful beach chairs and hoards of fans. When our very own dayside host Helen Leicht introduced Billy Hector to the stage, she reminded the audience that Hector first came to her as a request for which area-artist to play on her broadcast showcasing local music. Lo and behold, the people wanted Hector, and next thing you know he was nothing less than a rock great gracing XPoNential Festival.
Hector and his band, made up of Sim Cain on drums and Winston Roye on bass, got the jams going with a good opening song that welcomed the crowd as they poured into the venue and gave them a taste of the beach blues they were about to experience. His next track began with a hint of Jimi Hendrick’s “R U Experienced,” before propelling into a jam session all their own.
Each song provided dynamic solos from each member, showing there was plenty of rock to go around. And, come on, the amount of barefoot dancing in the grass would make any Woodstock-era artist smile.
Hector is no stranger to the stage — he brings his signature sound and guitar shreds to venues across the Jersey shore every week and always makes sure to integrate writing and playing music into his everyday life. After all, he’s been doing this for nearly four decades now.
Halfway through their set the music vets transitioned to something a little harder, that had a “Bad to the Bone” flair. Even with the song’s edge, it was ever-apparent that Hector and the band were having the time of their lives performing.
Hector and crew then ripped into an all instrumental track before closing their set for the evening. Before he was done, Hector had one more thing he wanted to share with the audience. “Do the next right thing,” he said with a smile as he surveyed the bustling crowd. ” Continue on this road of happiness.”