Thursday, April 2, 2009
The blog started off as a way to teach blues history to my college students, but now it is more a blues news gathering site. I always hope that once the school year is over I can devote more time to posting videos, and more original content. Yet, once summer starts it is summer school! It never ends:-)
Thanks for sticking with me, and if you are new please stay around! Let have another great year and thanks for stopping by!
HI Tom, O'Kellys here in Baxter has got a darn good blues lineup for
Wednesday nights bike night. At least it looks pretty good to me. I myself
especially like Lil Dave Thompson and Brian Lee. But that is not to say
some of the others are not dynamite too. Just thought I would share. Sure
makes listening to the blues easy for me. I can walk to the show.
The shows are free admission on Weds evenings (bike night) and they usually
start around 6 PM. There are usually lots of bikers at O'Kellys and the bands
play outside. Great venue. Great lineup. Like everything, these could
change, I would call ahead to be sure the band that is scheduled is going on
(641) 227-3013 (weather and schedule changes may impact this, and more will
be added but don't know for sure who or when) but for what it is worth...:
May 27th Lil Dave Thompson
June 3rd Matt woods & the thunderbolts
June 10th Eric Jerardi
June 17th Scott Holt
June 24th Craig Swallwell
July 1st Mike Mcabee
July 15th Curly Taylor & Zydeco Trouble
July 29th Bryan Lee
Aug 5th Joe Price
Aug 12th Mike Mcabee
Aug 19th Rockin Jake
Aug 26th Eddie Turner
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Latest news, photos, reviews, links & MUCH MORE in this issue! - Scroll or Page Down!
Hey Blues Fans,
We have news of more great line ups from major US Blues festivals this week. Get your calendars marked and make your hotel reservations NOW!
The 10th Annual Highway 61 Blues Festival in Leland, MS is Saturday, June 6 and 7th, 2009. Performing at the fest will be Eddie Shaw and the Wolf Gang, Cedric and Lightnin' Malcolm, David "Honeyboy" Edwards with Michael Frank, Rocky Lawrence, Lil' Dave Thompson, T Model Ford, The John Horton Band, Mississippi Slim, Eddie Cusic, Pat Thomas, Jimmy "Duck" Holmes, Mickey Rogers and the Soulmasters, Mike's Blue Groove (Sweden), The Mayhem String Band, Rob Mortimer Band, Pokey Lafarge and Lazy Bone.
The Greeley Blues Jam is June 12 and 13th, 2009 in Greeley, Colorado. Festival performers are Walter Trout, Charlie Musselwhite, Marcia Ball, Ronnie Baker Brooks, Doug Kershaw and others to be announced soon.
The IH Mississippi Valley Blues Festival runs July 2nd to 4th, 2009 in Le Claire Park in Davenport, IA. It is one of the biggest and best Midwest festivals celebrating their 25th Anniversary this year. Here is their lineup: Thursday July 2nd - Bob Dorr & the Blue Band, Pena Brothers, Cobalt Blue, Roy Rogers & the Delta Rhythm Kings, Radoslav Lorkovic, Hawkeye Herman, Bo Ramsey, Saffire - the Uppity Blues Women
Friday July 3rd - Ellis Kell Band, J.P. Soars & The Red Hots, Eugene Hideway Bridges, Ric E Bluz, Eddie "The Chief" Clearwater, T.J. Wheeler, David "Honeyboy" Edwards, Fiona Boyes, Dee Alexander, Sugar Pie DeSanto
Saturday July4th - Steady Rolling Blues Band, Robin Rogers, Craig Horton, Larry McCray, Rod Piazza and the Mighty Flyers, Marquise Knox, Junk Joint Duo, Kenny Brown, Diunna Greenleaf, Magic Slim and the Teardrops
If these are any indication of what the summer Blues fest season is going to be like hold on to your hats because this is gonna be one HOT Blues summer!
We made it out to see David "Honeyboy" Edwards in Urbana, IL. playing a show with Kilborn Alley Blues Band. Honeyboy as you probably know is the last of the original Delta Blues men. He was there the night legendary Blues man Robert Johnson was killed. He and longtime partner Michael Frank opened the show with an hour set and then Honeyboy signed autographs and visited with fans as Kilborn Alley entertained the crowd with a set of tunes from their new CD to be released in June.
Afterward, Honeyboy joined Kilborn Alley on stage for a few more songs and the crowd loved it! At the age of 93, we are amazed at the stamina and passion for the music this man still has!
In this issue - Blues Reviews and MORE!
James Walker reviews a new CD from Phil Berkowitz. George Fish reviews a new CD by Paul Reddick. Tom “THE ENERGIZER" Schlesinger reviews a new CD by Walter Trout. Mike O'Cull reviews a new CD from Rev. Jimmie Bratcher.
Our video of the week is a clip of Muddy Waters playing "Long Distance Call" with Willie "Big Eyes" Smith, Calvin Jones, Jerry Portnoy, Bob Margolin and Pinetop Perkins. All this and MORE! SCROLL DOWN!!!
Featured Blues Review 1 of 4
Phil Berkowitz - All Night Party
Dirty Cat Records
14 songs; Time 58:44; Suggested
Style: Chicago Blues, West Coast Jump, New Orleans R&B
“My fellow Americans, we must return to simple basics in this country! For example, when investing, do not put all of your eggs in one basket!” General Wetnight, 2009.
As if answering the good General’s call, Phil Berkowitz sings, “‘I Want a Roof Over My Head’ and bread on the table and love in my heart just for you, where we can have peace of mind....” Now, it just doesn’t get more basic than that. And, speaking of “basics,” it feels so good to get back to some basic Blues done really well after reviewing three non-Blues records in a row.
This is harmonica player Phil’s “fourth official CD,” and, with eight original songs, it is a solid winner from start to stop. Berkowitz is able to convey fun and excitement in the songs, and the title, “All Night Party” seems as natural as a Jamaican work-free drug place. Studio recorded, Berkowitz and Danny Caron co-produced the album with Caron co-writing three numbers and adding some guitar. Studio guests include Sean Carney on guitar and Bill Stuve on bass. At the core are a group of Bay Area musicians: Tim Wagar, Bowen Brown, William Beatty, and Marvin Greene. The few horn parts are from Jeff “Irv” Irvin, Robert Dehlinger, and Doug Rowan. Craig Knudsen added some background vocals.
Phil Berkowitz is a San Francisco Bay area based blues harmonica player and vocalist with an energetic musical style. He is a New Jersey native and the fourth child in a family of six. He relocated to California in early 1989 to complete his college degree. It was during this time at Sonoma State University that he began playing the harmonica and fell in love with all forms of blues and jazz influenced music, especially that of Louis Jordan. He decided to front a band of his own and embarked on a journey of mastering every facet of the diatonic and chromatic harmonica.
“All Night Party” is the opening track as well as the CD’s main theme. This title track sounds live and does a great job of immediately bringing the listener through the door to the party. Set at medium tempo, the song’s piano, harmonica, guitar, guests, and vocals are all intoxicatingly intertwined. The party does not end until the last song titled, “The Party’s Over,” but its rollicking piano leaves us in our dancing shoes; it doesn’t let down easy.
“Straight Up” is wonderful straight up Chicago Blues. Starting with the song’s pace, it’s classic in every way from the lyric message challenging a lover to choose to Sean Carney’s mid song guitar solo to Phil’s scolding harmonica.
My favorite song is an instrumental titled “Tonka T.” Berkowitz’s chromatic harmonica eloquently explains why it is also called a “mouth organ.” Phil claims the song was inspired by a favorite dog, so imagine a perky, playful pooch as the song bounces along.
Other standouts: “Midnight Rooster” with its slowly wrought message of timeless values, “Fine Little Honey Dripper” featuring inspired string work by Marvin Greene, and “Beach Bar Boogie” inspired by a 2007 trip to St. John and infused with an upbeat New Orleans style.
Berkowitz claims the cover songs gave him opportunity to pay tribute to idols: Jimmy T-99 Nelson, Ray Charles, Billy Boy Arnold, Louis Jordan, and Earl King.
Tired of Rock being passed off as Blues? Then get back to the basics with Phil Berkowitz. Not only is his music authentic, it is a party!
Reviewer James “Skyy Dobro” Walker is a noted Blues writer, DJ and Blues Blast contributor. His weekly radio show “Friends of the Blues” can be heard each Thursday from 4:30 – 6:00pm on WKCC 91.1 FM in Kankakee, IL
For other reviews and interviews on our website CLICK HERE.
For tickets and info CLICK HERE
Blues Society News
Please submit a maximum of 175 or words or less in a Text or Word format ONLY.
Central Mississippi Blues Society – Jackson, MS
The CMBS presents Blue Monday at Hal & Mal’s (200 Commerce St., Jackson, MS) every Monday night. Doors open @ 8:00 and music begins @ 8:30. Cover is $5.
The Blue Monday Band is comprised of the “best of the best “ musicians in the Central MS area. Featured artists are King Edward, lead guitar/vocalist and Pat Brown, Abdul Rasheed and Dennis Fountain as vocalists. Other regular band members are Dwight Ross and Rick Lewis (drums), Keith Collins (bass), Johnny Sharpe (keys) and Malcolm Shepherd (CMBS President) on Congas. Most of these musicians appeared in The Last of the Mississippi Jukes.
The Blue Monday Band plays the first set and then the event turns into a jam. For more info see: www.centralmississippibluessociety.com or call Peggy Brown @ 601-613-7377
Friends Of The Blues Shows - Kankakee IL
The Friends of the Blues has started their 2009 Blues concert Series. Here are thie shows for April.
Tuesday, April 14- Too Slim & The Taildraggers, 7:00 Pm, Legacy Bar & Grill, 135 N Kinzie Ave (Route 50), Bradley Il 60915. (815) 936-1649.
Saturday, April 18 – Reverend Raven & Chain Smoking Altar Boys, 8:00 PM, Kankakee Valley Boat Club, Cobb Boulevard, Kankakee IL(815) 936-1699
Tuesday, April 21 – Damon Fowler, 7:00 PM, Kankakee Elks Country Club, 2283 Bittersweet Drive, St. Anne Il. 815-937-1228
Arkansas River Blues Society - Little Rock, AR
The Arkansas River Blues Society has settled in to its home base at Jazzi's, 5200 Asher Ave. in Little Rock. The jam is held on the 1st Wed. of each month. A different house band is featured each month and on April 1st it will be Jess Hoggard and Southern Soul featuring Charles Wood. The May house band is Unseen Eye from Hot Springs. Recent house bands have been Joe Marks and NTO, Joe Pitts Band, Mike Dollins and the Cruise Bros., Big John Miller Band, N-2 Blues, and John Craig. Regular jammers have been Dan Sokoloski, Jawbone and Jolene, Charlotte Taylor, Ed Bowman, Charles Wood, and G-Funk the Tree Trunk. Joe Pitts brought in a touring band from Italy called Shanghai Noodle Factory. Jam begins at 8:30 and runs till midnight. People are friendly and the food is good. You can find out about special events by visiting the MySpace page at http://www.myspace.com/arriverbluessociety
Mississippi Valley Blues Society - Davenport, IA
The Mississippi Valley Blues Society presents the duo of Hal Reed and Donald Kinsey for its Blues in the Schools Artists in Residency Series for April. Hal and Donald will conduct their “Generations of Blues” workshops at nine area schools and four Open to the Public performances between April 6 and 10.
Free, Open to the Public Performances are Monday, Apr. 6, 11:45 a.m. at CASI, 1035 W. Kimberly, Davenport. IA. Monday, Apr. 6, 4:00 p.m. at M.L. King Center, 630 9th St., Rock Island, IL. Wednesday, Apr. 8, 7:00 p.m. at Mojo’s in the River Music Experience, 129 Main, Davenport, IA. Thursday, Apr. 9, 1:30 p.m.at Bettendorf Public Library, 2950 Learning Campus Dr. Bettendorf, IA. For more info contact call the MVBS office at 563-32-BLUES or Hal Reed at 563-650-4303
Illinois Central Blues Club - Springfield, IL
BLUE MONDAY SHOWS
Held at the Alamo 115 N 5th St, Springfield, IL (217) 523-1455 every Monday 8:30pm $2 cover - Apr 6 - Blues Deacons, Apr 13 - Too Slim & the Taildraggers, Apr 20 - Pleasure Chest, Apr 27 - Nothin' But Trouble
River City Blues Society- Peoria, IL
The River City Blues Society's Wednesday Blues Series in Central, Illinois are early shows each Wednesday at 7:00pm, featuring the best traveling regional and National Blues musicians. The shows feature a budget priced cover charge of $4. The shows are held at the Dragon's Dome, 3401 Griffin Ave in Pekin, IL.
Shows scheduled are: Apr 8 - Third Degree Blues Band, Apr 15 - Too Slim & The Tail Draggers, Apr 22 - Damon Fowler Group, April 29 - Bob Dorr & The Blue Band, May 6 Shannon Curfman, May 13 - Scott Ellison, May 20 - Deak Harp, May 27 - The Insomniacs
Featured Blues Review 2 of 4
Reviewer George Fish lives in Indianapolis, Indiana, home of blues legends Yank Rachell and Leroy Carr, and writes a regular music column, “Blues and More” for the online Bloomington (IN) Alternative. He’s also published in the regional Indiana blues and alternative presses as well as Living Blues and Blues Access, and wrote the notes for Yank Rachell’s Delmark album, Chicago Style. He has also published on blues and pop music for the left-wing press as well, and has appeared in Against the Current and Socialism and Democracy, as well as the online Political Affairs and MRZine.
For other reviews and interviews on our website CLICK HERE.
The BEST Way To Promote YOUR Next Blues Project!
BANDS, BARS, AND LABELS: Is your promo material getting you the gigs and business you desire? If not, call music journalist and copy writer Mike O'Cull for all your promotional needs. Mike is a veteran music journalist and musician and writes for the Illinois Entertainer, IllinoisBlues.com, and www.Chicagomusicguide.com and can deliver the highest quality promotional writing around quickly and at a reasonable price.
Mike's specialties include bios, press releases, liner notes, and web content. Full press kit design, including graphics, is also available. Clients include The Joe Moss Band, Carl Davis, TruSoul Entertainment, B.A. S. Entertainment, and many others. Samples available on request. Email email@example.com , call Mike O'Cull Music at 847-608-0357, or visit us online at www.myspace.com/mikeocullmusic for more information.
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Its "MOJO MADNESS" At WGLT In Normal, Illinois The Whole Month Of March !!! 89.1 & 103.5, And On The Web At www.wglt.org Just Click On "Listen"
Listen to GLT Blues every weekend in March for MOJO MADNESS! It's your chance to win tickets to the Illinois Blues Festival in Peoria on Labor Day weekend as you call GLT to vote for your favorite blues artists. Here's the deal:
We've seeded and bracketed 32 great blues artists from yesterday and today for a blues tournament we're calling "MOJO MADNESS." MOJO MADNESS is just like the NCAA Basketball tournament every March, except YOU decide the winner of each round with your phone votes. If you're the 89th voter in a particular match, you'll win concert tickets. You may call to vote as often as you like, but you can only win once during the tournament. Every person who wins concert tickets by being the 89th voter qualifies for the Grand Prize: A Black Cat Bone ... that is, an iPod with songs from all 32 artists who made it into the 2009 MOJO MADNESS bracket.
Look at and download your own MOJO MADNESS bracket so you can keep track of the winners, as well as the date and times of each MOJO MADNESS match. Here's the link to the bracket: http://wglt.org/programs/blues/mojo-layout.pdf
This Weeks Mojo Madness Championship Match
Saturday April 4th (1:00pm) John Lee Hooker vs. BB King
Listen Live and phone in your votes at 309 438-8910
Last Weeks Winners
Week Three Winners
Blues Video of the Week
"Long Distance Call"
This week we feature a video from a 1976 that has Blues legend Muddy Waters playing with a great collection of all star Blues players in his band.
It is a classic you have got to see!
His band included Willie "Big Eyes" Smith on drums, Calvin Jones on bass, Jerry Portnoy on harmonica, Bob Margolin on guitar and Pinetop Perkins on piano.
To see this cool video on our website, click the play button below.
For other videos on our website CLICK HERE.
The River City Blues Society presents
Wednesday Blues 7:00pm Early Shows
April 8 - Third Degree Blues Band
The Dragon's Dome
To see Map- CLICK HERE
Admission $4 - One free admission with new Society membership
Featured Blues Review 3 of 4
For other reviews and interviews on our website CLICK HERE.
Featured Blues Review 4 of 4
For other reviews and interviews on our website CLICK HERE.
Live Blues Calendar
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Performance dates submitted by Musicians, Clubs, Blues Societies and Blues festivals.
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Wednesday, April 1, 2009
From Bob Corritore
RIP Ted Jarrett 10/17/1925-3/28/2009: This news just in from Ben the Harpman from his Juke Joint Soul newsletter: legendary soul & R&B producer Ted Jarrett passed away Saturday in a Nashville city hospice of liver failure at the age of 83. Funeral services for Jarrett are being held Thursday at Greater St. John Missionary Baptist Church, 2200 26th Ave. North, Nashville, TN 37208. Jarrett's career as a producer, label owner, and songwriter are that of legend. He wrote and produced such tunes as Louis Brooks & the Hi-Toppers' hit "It's Love Baby (24 Hours A Day)" for Excello Records, and Gene Allison's "You Can Make It If You Try", an R&B standard. Jarrett also is one of the only African-Americans to have a country hit in the 1950s, when he wrote Webb Pierce's "Love, Love, Love". Ted Jarrett's contributions can still be heard today in artists that blend country music and soul. If you are unfamiliar with Jarrett's work, pick up the set Night Train to Nashville, and most notably you'll see his name written across the recording credits for many of those classic R&B chestnuts.
March 31, 2009
- Big Pete Pearson New CD to be Released as Part of the VizzTone Label Group: This exciting news just in: Big Pete Pearson's new CD called Finger In Your Eye will be released as part of the VizzTone Label Group! On this new CD, Big Pete's spectacular vocals are showcased on 10 original songs with top notch accompaniment by The Rhythm Room All-Stars (Bob Corritore, Chris James, Patrick Rynn, Brian Fahey), plus special guests Pinetop Perkins, Duke Robillard, Henry Gray, Billy Flynn, Eddie Taylor, Jr., Doug James, and more! This CD is produced by Bob Corritore, and engineered and mixed by Clarke Rigsby. You can look for this exciting new CD to be released this summer, with a CD release party a little ahead of that on May 29 and 30, 2009 at the Rhythm Room. The VizzTone Label Group is run by some exceptional people in the blues: Chip Eagle (Blues Revue Magazine, BluesWax), Richard Rosenblatt (a fine harp player and former chief of Tone-Cool Records), Bob Margolin (legendary guitarist from the Muddy Waters band), and Gerald Hurst. Also on the VizzTone Label Group are Pinetop Perkins, Big Bill Morganfield (new release coming soon!), Son Seals, Gaye Adegbalola, Gina Sicilia, David Gross, Boyes, Brill, and DelGrosso (Fiona Boyes, Mookie Brill, and Rich DelGrosso), Super Chikan, Monster Mike Welch, Bruce Katz, Terry Hanck, Bob Margolin, and others. Thank you, VizzTone, for inviting Big Pete Pearson to your wonderful roster.
- Rhythm Room All-Stars Appear Friday and Saturday at their Home Base: Come see The Rhythm Room All-Stars this weekend at the Rhythm Room! The Rhythm Room All-Stars' lineup consists of Big Pete Pearson, Bob Corritore, Chris James, Patrick Rynn, and Brian Fahey. They appear this Friday and Saturday, April 3-4, 2009 at their home base of the Rhythm Room. The Rhythm Room is located at 1019 E. Indian School Rd. in Phoenix. Doors open at 8pm, cover charge is $7. These nights will be patio smoking only events; no indoor smoking will be permitted. Rack Shack Barbeque will be available at these events.
- Chris James & Patrick Rynn to Appear at Blues Music Awards! Partial list of BMA Performers Announced! This year, the Blues Music Awards takes place on May 7, 2009 at the Cook Convention Center, and the BMAs celebrate their 30th anniversary. We have just received word that Chris James and Patrick Rynn will be included in the awards lineup with a set scheduled for the lobby pre-party. Chris and Patrick's CD Stop And Think About It on the Earwig Music label is nominated for a BMA in the category of Best Debut Artist. The band lineup performing at the BMAs will include Chris James, guitar and vocals, Patrick Rynn on bass, David Maxwell on piano, Bob Corritore on harmonica, and Eddie Kobek on drums. Other acts appearing at this great event include Bettye LaVette, Taj Mahal, Irma Thomas, Marcia Ball, Otis Taylor, Willie "Big Eyes" Smith, Lurrie Bell, Bob Stroger, Janiva Magness, The Mannish Boys, Gaye Adegbalola, Maria Muldaur, Kenny Neal, Rory Block, Albert Castiglia, and Eden Brent. additional performers will announced soon. The great B.B. King will be on hand to present the B.B. King Entertainer Of The Year award. The BMA celebration is simply the best blues party of the year. To read more about this event, click here. A tradition for the night after the BMAs is amazing Delta Groove All-Star Blues Revue. This year the event happens May 8, 2009 at the New Daisy Theatre. To read more about this year's Delta Groove Showcase and its spectacular lineup, click here. To see photos of last year's BMAs and the Delta Groove Showcase, click here.
- Bob Corritore Included in List of "Best Blues Harpists" on Blues Forum! The Blues Forum website has started a list and a poll of "Best Blues Harmonica Players". Among the harpists listed are Little Walter, Big Walter, Sonny Boy Williamson I, Sonny Boy Williamson II, William Clarke, Kim Wilson, Carey Bell, James Cotton, Charlie Musselwhite, Rod Piazza, Paul Butterfield, Sonny Terry, Jerry Portnoy, Papa Lightfoot, Howlin' Wolf, John Popper, Rick Estrin, Sugar Blue, Alan Wilson, Gary Primich, Lester Butler, Lee Oskar, James Harman, Mojo Buford, Annie Raines, Jason Ricci, Norton Buffalo, DeFord Bailey, Guy Forsyth, and others. Bob Corritore was honored to be listed among these harmonica greats! To see the list of over 40 blues harmonica players, click here. Thank you very much, Blues Forum, for this recognition!
- Charlie Musselwhite to Appear at the Glendale Jazz & Blues Festival on Sunday: Speaking of Charlie Musselwhite, he will headline Sunday's blues stage at the Glendale Jazz and Blues Festival. Charlie has that beautiful Southern seasoned approach to blues, and is known around the world as a harmonica master. This 2-day event happens Saturday and Sunday, April 4 and 5, 2009 in Glendale, Arizona, and features a great lineup of jazz and blues performers. To read more about this event and the entire lineup, click here.
- Rave Review of Broadcasting The Blues CD on Docteur Blues Site: Special thanks to Jocelyn Richez for his recent rave review of Broadcasting The Blues, a CD that commemorates the 25th anniversary of Bob Corritore's radio show, Those Lowdown Blues on KJZZ. The disc contains live, on-air performances and moments with artists who have guested on Bob's show over its 25 years. Artists include Lowell Fulson (from 1984 performing a solo version of "Sinner's Prayer"), Billy Boy Arnold, Louisiana Red, Dave Riley, Otis Clay and Johnny Rawls (together singing a spiritual), Willie Dixon (giving a spoken plug for the show), Chief Schabuttie Gilliame, Lazy Lester, Tomcat Courtney, Jerry Lawson (of The Persuasions), CeDell Davis, Chris James (who beautifully backed many of these artists on guitar), Margo Reed, Johnny Dyer, Henry Gray, Billy Flynn (doing a great harmonica instrumental), and more. To read this review in French, click here; or for English translation, click here. To order this CD, click here.