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Friday, June 13, 2008

Bob Dorr And The Blue Band Update

For those who don't know Bob is based in Ceder Falls Iowa, which is one of the many Iowa towns affected by the Flood of 08. Those of us who follow the Blue Band are glad that Bob survived the storm.

If the old saying is true: It gets slippery when it's wet, then the entire state of Iowa must be advanced formula WD-40, cuz baby, it's wet...

Because you regularly read the message board (don't you?) you already know that Thursday's appearance at the Sturgis On The River festival in Davenport (which was moved from the riverfront because of the flooding) was cancelled because of the massive flooding not allowing us to get there! At 8pm, one of the nation's busiest cross country highways, I-80, was shut down for a 30 mile stretch. They don't know when it will reopen...

Tonight's (6/13) Fridayloo/Blue Band birthday party in Waterloo has been rescheduled for next Friday, June 20 (hold on to that CAKE) It's odd that the party was postponed, not because Lincoln Park was flooded, but because flooding has closed all the bridges leading to that park, so no one can get there!...

Saturday night's show at Prairie Meadows Racetrack and Casino is still on. Providing we can get there. Hwys 21/63/14/330, south to Des Moines from Sparkle City are all closed because of the flooding. If the Hwy 20 to I-35 route stays open, we'll see you in the Finish Line Lounge right after the horse races (about 10pm)...

I must say, that in light of the total devastation of thousands of homes and families, I will never complain about a few inches of water in my basement ever again. (altho' I reserve the right to mention the malfunctioning of a certain sump pump every once in a while) The most incredible and awe inspiring volunteer and city government effort I have ever seen, featuring round the clock sandbagging, saved Sparkle City's downtown area from destruction. Unfortunately, the North Cedar area was not spared Mother Nature's latest wrath. MANY houses were completely under water. Cedar Falls Utilities entire first floor was totally submerged in what looks to be about 8 feet (yes FEET, not inches) of water. Somehow CFU employees managed to keep the power on and the water uncontaminated. I LOVE the fact that Sparkle City owns it's own utilities company! When I walked the levee of sandbags the night of the crest, ducks were literally swimming in the tree tops! Then the water moved on to Waterloo, where it's still residing on many downtown streets and making a normally 15 minute trip across town into a two hour ordeal of finding an unflooded route where the bridge across the river is not underwater itself. In the last 40 hours, here in the Cedar Valley, the water has dropped over 6 feet. That means that it's down to levels that are regularly called "severe flooding". It's also because all that water moved into Cedar Rapids, causing more flooding, damage, and destruction than I have seen since Katrina. Dennis, our stage manager, said that at 11am Thursday morning, there was about four FEET of water around his house. The water in Cedar Rapids has risen 2-3 inches EVERY HOUR since then. It's predicted to crest tonight at over 32 feet. The previous record in Cedar Rapids was in 1929 at 19 feet. I feel awful for all those people and businesses. I have not yet heard from our friend Pinkstuff. CHECK IN GIRL! We's worried 'boutchya. The good news is that the Cedar Rapids crest is s'posed to be overnight tonight. The bad news is that all that water is headed toward Iowa City, which is already experiencing MAJOR flooding problems. YIKES!! Mother Nature, I'm cryin' UNCLE!! Enough of this year long rage. Iowans are good people who do not deserve this unrelenting tirade. QUIT IT, MOM!!...

On a COMPLETELY different subject, I have been asked by the producer of Iowa Public Radio's morning talk show The Exchange, to be a guest host of that show one day a week thru July! I'm thrilled and apprehensive at the same time. I'm a talk show junkie, but I've never actually tried to host an entire hour of talk with someone I've never met before. Should be "interesting". I'll be on every Tuesday in July, starting July 1. The show runs 10-11am. DOUBLE YIKES! Be the host of a talk show BEFORE noon??!! Listen anywhere on the planet at

Because most of the gigs next week are private parties (except for the aforementioned rescheduled Fridayloo/Blue Birthday Party, in Lincoln Park-Waterloo, next Friday, 5:30-9:30pm) (remember the CAKE) there probably won't be a Blue Note next week. Maybe we'll dry out so it won't be so slippery on that wet Blue Highway! USE YER DAMN TURN SIGNALS while boating in the streets. Pray for drought. Invest in corn futures. And always remember, we love you, rain or shine... Bob Dorr & The Blue Band

Meade Lux Lewis: Honky Tonk Train

One of my favorite piano players, and an infuence on all of us who like to play boogie Piano! Mr. Meade Lux Lewis!

Candye Kane: Great Big Woman

This is a nice video of Candye Kane. Enjoy!!!

Sean Costello: Video Collection

Not sure who made this nice collection of Sean Costello's performance from Blues In Athena, but it is nice.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Andy Coats Update

Quick update from my buddy Andy Coats

Hey everyone,

Well, it’s been a while since I have played at the Blue Bayou ( in Hillsborough, but I am honored to be back there next Thurs., June 19.

The Triangle Blues Society ( is sponsoring the show, and Triangle Rockin’ Blues has been kind enough to put together a special VIP giveaway package.

Please read on below …. To enter please simply reply to






To enter, just hit reply. (One entry per person. Enter by 7pm on Mon., June 16. Drawing winner will be notified that evening.) ===============================================================

Andy Coats Thur., June 19 8:30-11pm non-smoking

Blue Bayou - 106 S. Churton St., Hillsborough 919-732-2555


In 2007, TBS added a solo/duo category to its Blues Challenge. Andy Coats won did TBS proud in Memphis. As an individual, he's also been a stellar ambassador for TBS, North Carolina and blues this past year.

A guitarist-singer-songwriter, Andy Coats has performed coast to coast, including live shows on NPR. Selected as an Emerging Artist for the 2006 Arkansas Blues & Heritage Festival, he's also played internationally esteemed venues such as B.B. King's in Los Angeles.

He's opened for nationals including Eric Sardinas and W.C. Handy Award Winner Rod Piazza & the Mighty Flyers. Andy is helping keep the unique finger-picking technique of Piedmont Blues alive and is honored to have been selected to perform a solo set at the 2008 Eno Festival in a slot traditionally reserved for elderly statesmen.

Under 70, doing finger-pickin' blues. Don't see much of that, folks.

Young people who take up NC heritage art forms are all that keeps our traditions from dying out. Andy's sure been doing his part so let's do ours by coming out on the 19th to show our appreciation!


Thanks to Sherry Johnson for putting this together!


Blues Before Sunset Canceled!!!

Those of you who stop by here daily know that massive flooding is occurring in Iowa. Unfortunately it is changing plans all across the state. The Blues Before Sunset show featuring Andy Schneider has been canceled. Hopefully they can reschedule the event. Here is the press release


June 12, 2008

3 p.m.

Contact: Sarah Oltrogge, (515) 281-4011;

Blues Before Sunset June 13 Concert Cancelled

DES MOINES – The Blues Before Sunset concert at the State Historical Building scheduled for Friday, June 13 from 5:30-7:30 p.m. has been cancelled. City officials are curtailing all downtown activities over the weekend as the flooding situation remains uncertain. Officials at the State Historical Building are in regular communication with state and local authorities regarding flooding that is affecting the Des Moines metro area and downtown in particular. If conditions remain unsafe for the public due to rising water or power outages, further notice of any changes to the concert schedule will be announced accordingly. The State Historical Building is located at 600 E. Locust, in the heart of Des Moines’ Historic East Village.

Performer Andy Schneider may be rescheduled for the week of August 4. Dependent upon flooding, Blues Before Sunset will continue Friday, June 20 with Blues Bureau. Visit for the complete concert series schedule.

Blues Before Sunset is sponsored by the State Historical Society of Iowa and Central Iowa Blues Society with promotional support proudly driven by 100.3 The BUS and Capital 106.3, “quality music from then and now” and additional support by Baratta’s restaurant.

Blues On Grand Goes SMOKE FREE!!!

Just got a hot tip from the Doc on his upcoming extravaganza on June 30th. For most of you who are not aware of Iowa politics, on July 1st Iowa becomes smoke free in public places. Personally, I was OK with the law until I found out that Casino's were exempt. (That tells you who makes the laws in this place) However, Jeff has found a way to "celebrate" the upcoming law change. Here is his press release for the big gig.

The legendary Blues on Grand is going SMOKE - FREE a day early on Monday, June 30th . On Monday from 6:00pm until 9pm everyone SMOKES FOR FREE. The Blues on Grand cigarette girls will distribute free cigarettes to everyone (twenty-one and over).

In honor of Iowa's statewide smoking ban, music will be provided by DJ Serge (pronounced sir gay) playing your favorite Soviet Union standards. There also will be specials on Stoly and Smirnoff Ice. At 9:00pm, Blues on Grand will officially go non-smoking and have a flag raising ceremony that truly represents the direction our government is heading.

Blues on Grand sends out a special invitation to all Democratic Senators, Representatives, Governor Culver AND Mrs. Culver (upon presentation of proper papers of course) in appreciation for them looking our for us.

All smokers get down to the mighty BOG and enjoy your last smokes before your favorite smoky blues joint goes non-smoking! Jeff is wild and crazy, so if he is given out free smokes, (and trust me Jeff giving out anything free is certainly something that doesn't happen every day!) take him up on the free cigarettes!!! I mean this is a guy who charges for WATER!!!! So take advantage of the situation:-)

Stevie Wonder: Higher Ground

Searching for higher ground is certainly the word around Iowa tonight. The Governor has announced that things are now officially worse than the flood of 1993. For those not aware of 1993, us in Iowa certainly remember that nightmare summer. Much like this year, it has been a snowy winter, and then once spring sprung storms raced across the prairies. Then the rivers overflowed starting east of the Mississippi, and moving west into Iowa. All that water and no place to go. The rain has fallen all night tonight across NW Iowa into the Des Moines and Raccoon Rivers, which meet smack dab in the middle of Des Moines. However, what is amazing about Iowans is their ability to plan and adapt. So far, even with record flooding, Des Moines will probably stay dry. Yet, other parts of Iowa, Wisconsin, Illinois, Missouri, and Indiana are not so lucky. So tonight take heed of Stevie Wonders advice, and seek higher ground.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

The Blues Is Dead Again:-)

Wow! These guys don't stop do they! What is it with the media and its desire to kill the blues. Karen over at Today's Chicago Blues Blog has a link to another article giving the grim prognosis of the future of the blues. I mean certainly some of the older players have left us, and its tragic, but that is life. The blues, which started during reconstruction has gone through generations of players, as this generation passes, there is another ready to pick up the mantle. Perhaps if the media just peruse this website, they would see a ton of great blues acts of all ages. However just like politics it is far easier to parrot the talking point, or the conventional wisdom, then actually do some research. If a reporter called me and wanted to know the state of the blues today, I would say doing alright, could be better, but it is alive and well. Simply compare the blues scene of today, to what is was like in the mid to late 70s. Then the blues really was on life support all over the US. Disco's and DJs almost sucked the life blood out of live music in the 70s, but we all survived, and we will all survive this. The blues is so saturated in the blood of American popular music that it is here to stay. It won't go away, so you reporters just better get use to it. Stop the sob stories, and start doing some work for a change.

Murali Coryell

Tour information for Murali Coryell

Get your copy of "The Same Damn Thing" buy now @

Thursday, June 19th, 2008
The Teal -
10 year anniversary celebration - 7:00pm
The Strand
Kingston, NY
(845) 334-8887
Price: $35

This will sell out get tix in advance by calling Ship to

Friday, June 20th, 2008
The Gilded Otter -
solo acoustic - 4:00pm
3 Main St.
New Paltz, NY 12561
(845) 256-1700

teacher appreciation happy hour!

Saturday, June 21st, 2008
Benji and Jakes -
5 Horseshoe Lake Rd
Kauneonga Lake, NY 12749
(845) 583-4031

Monday, June 23rd, 2008
Bourbon Street Blues & Boogie Bar -
220 Printers Alley
Nashville, TN 37201
(615) 242-5837
Price: TBA

Nashville's best live blues room!

Saturday, June 28th, 2008
Chan's Eggroll and Jazz -
267 Main St.
Woonsocket, RI 02895
(401) 765-1900
Price: $20

A night of Chicago Blues with Murali Coryell & Magic Dick!

Monday, June 30th, 2008
Time Out Pub -
275 Main St.
Rockland, ME 04841
(207) 593-9336
Price: TBA

national blues acts Monday nights!

Friday, July 4th, 2008
Cooperstown Blues Express -
county highway 28
Milford, NY
Price: $15

Blues Party Train Ride. adults only!

Saturday, July 5th, 2008
The Gilded Otter -
solo acoustic - 8:00pm
3 Main St.
New Paltz, NY 12561
(845) 256-1700

Tuesday, July 8th, 2008
Stevie Ray's Blues Bar -
230 E Main St
Louisville, KY 40202
(502) 582-9945
Price: $10

Louisville's best blues room!
with Lee Puckett-bass & Jeff McIntosh-drums

Wednesday, July 9th, 2008
BB's Jazz, Blues and Soups -
700 South Broadway
St. Louis, MO 63102
(314) 436-5222
Price: TBA

St. Louis best live blues room!

Thursday, July 10th, 2008
Slippery Noodle Inn -
National Blues Night @ The Noodle! - 9:00pm
372 S. Meridian St.
Indianapolis, IN 46225
(317) 631-6974
Price: TBA

Tuesday, July 15th, 2008
Buddy Guys Legends -
754 S. Wabash
Chicago, IL 60605
(312) 427-1190
Price: $10

Friday, July 25th, 2008
Garrison Park Harbor
Austin, TX

Saturday, July 26th, 2008
Evangeline Cafe -
8106 Brodie Ln # 110
Austin, TX 78745
(512) 282-2586

Friday, August 1st, 2008
Benji and Jakes -
5 Horseshoe Lake Rd.
Kauneonga Lake, NY 12749
(845) 583-4031

Friday, September 19th, 2008
Magic City Music Hall -
Fall River Blues -featuring Murali Coryell & Ronnie Baker Brooks!
365 Harry L Drive
Johnson City, NY 13790
(607) 729-2322

Saturday, September 20th, 2008
Lafayette Tap Room Bar-B-Que & Blues Saloon -
391 Washington Street
Buffalo, NY
(716) 854-2466
Price: TBA

Buffalo's Blues Room

Andy Schneider, Blues Before Sunset, Des Moines Iowa, Friday Night

Andy is hardly new to us in NW Iowa, but he is to Des Moines. If you are in Des Moines on Friday the 13th!!!!!! Check him out, also be sure to check out all of our new lakeside accommodations in Downtown Des Moines!! (So far so good, the water is up to the bridges, but Court Ave, after a brief scare this afternoon is still dry at 11:20pm Central Time US)

BTW, Frank what do I have to do to get a gig?!?!?!? I mean Andy, and Eric, but not me?!?!?!? ARGHGHGHGHGH. Me thinks you are carrying on this grudge too long:-)

Newcomer Andy Schneider June 13

Rain…what? We don’t need no more stinkin’ rain! Thankfully it looks like Friday will be clear and dry for Blues Before Sunset. So drive, walk or paddle on down to the State Historical Building and forget all about this flooding foolishness.

Get a load of the cutie we have this week – Charles City, Iowa native (and current NYC resident) Andy Schneider. He’s new to our series this year and promises to be nothing if not entertaining. Did I mention that he plays all the instruments and sings too?

To introduce him as a one-man band may not prepare you fully, nor do justice to the authenticity of the music. Andy Schneider preaches the blues: playing 8-string guitar (a combination of both bass and lead guitars), harmonica, drums and singing. Simultaneously. With a reverent nod to his blues and country roots, Schneider reinvents the traditional

bluesman's role, igniting the music with a fire and passion that’s contagious. Check out his Web site: to read more about this newcomer to BBS.

Blues Before Sunset is family friendly, free and open to the public. Beer, wine, bottled water, soft drinks available for sale and an assortment of food vendors will be selling hot foods. People attending the event should plan to bring their own seating.

Blues Before Sunset is sponsored by the State Historical Society of Iowa and Central Iowa Blues Society with promotional support proudly driven by 100.3 The BUS and Capital 106.3, “quality music from then and now” and additional support by Baratta’s restaurant.

Check out our **HOT** web site:


Partly cloudy, high of 79. Wind SW @ 12mph. Humidity 57%. Sunset at 8:50 p.m.

Illinois Blues Update

The Latest from our friends to the east. One note, unfortunately due to the design of my blog I needed to edit out a few ads that were so wide that they are clipped and unreadable. Please stop by the Illinois Blues website for the complete newsletter.

All news BLUES in the US!

FREE Blues Internet Magazine


June 11, 2008

© 2007 - 2008

News, photos, reviews, live Blues links & MUCH MORE in this issue! - Scroll or Page Down! quick website links: Reviews Links Photos Videos Blues Radio Blues Shows near YOU! Advertise for FREE! The Blues Blast Archives

Hey Blues Fans,

WOW, what a weekend! The 25th Annual Chicago Blues Festival had 7 stages of entertainment and over 100 Blues performers over four days. It was the largest Blues Fest in the US.

There were many other activities such as the after fest parties at Blues Heaven Foundation, The Koko Taylor After Fest Pub Crawl and a weekend extending Monday night show at Buddy Guy's legends by Isle of Man sensations, Back Door Slam (See James Walker's review below).

It is FAR TOO MUCH to cover in one issue so we are going to spread it out over the next couple weeks! Here are a few pics of the headliners below to show what is to come.

We covered nearly every act so we will have much more including performance reviews and tons more pictures in the coming weeks issues. Stay Tuned!

Blues Reviews This Week

James Walker reviews Back Door Slam's performance at Buddy Guy's legends. Rob Paullin reviews a CD by Eric Bibb. Ben Cox reviews a new CD by Janiva Magness. Jeremiah "Little Junior" James reviews a CD by Bonnie Bramlett. Chicago Editor Lordy reviews a performance by Marty Sammon and Rick King at Harlem Avenue Lounge. All this and much More! SCROLL DOWN!

Live Blues Review

Back Door Slam - Live at Buddy Guy’s Legends Chicago IL

Monday, June 09, 2008

By James “Skyy Dobro” Walker

When is the last time an artist played a “Sold Out” show at Legends, other than Buddy Guy himself? Located in Chicago IL, Legends nightclub is now famous world wide for live blues music seven nights per week featuring the biggest names in the genre. That is the setting for a live show by Back Door Slam, a band of three barely-in-their-twenties British youths from the Isle of Man.

Their first two numbers gave a good taste of what the boys are all about, but the third song demonstrated why they are truly special. From their debut CD, “Roll Away,” track 3 “Gotta Leave” had a slow start that built in intensity across the number. Perhaps the best attribute of the band is the singing of Davy Knowles. Showing off some pretty good song-writing, too, Knowles sang, “Ooh, you must have got me CON-fused with some other man... / Tell me: how can I trust you when you can’t trust your self?” with clear, distinct enunciation that is rare. As the intensity welled up, so did the power of his vocals. That power was thoroughly exceeded by his mid-song guitar solo that featured a fantastic pyrotechnic sonic assault reflecting the mood of the protagonist’s anguish. Any lingering doubts I had about “too much hype” were gone, and I was just putty in their hands after that.

A previous sold-out show at Martyr’s in Chicago had gotten the word spreading: there is something special going on here; this is a do-not-miss group. Definitely on the Rock side of Blues-Rock, Back Door Slam also caught attention by appearing on ABC’s Jimmy Kimmel Live late night program.

The club was filled with multiple generations, from twenty-somethings to baby-boomers. Each age group seems to have its own aspirations for the lads. The younger crowd loves the Rock edge they bring, and the older blues fans are hoping the blues-based music will bring new converts to the Blues similar to the way Stevie Ray Vaughan did.

Sponsored by WXRT radio, the early show started at 8:10 PM kicking off what might as well have been Day 5 of the Chicago Blues Festival, which had concluded the previous night with BB King. Getting right to the lightening quick guitar licks on original, “Too Late,” leader Davy Knowles played a blue Stratocaster through a Fender amp. Rounding out the trio were Adam Jones on bass and Ross Doyle on drums.

Between songs, Knowles commented, “It is a complete honor to be playing in such a prestigious place as the home of the blues [Legends] in the Home of the Blues [Chicago]. It seems pretty surreal right now!” Bass player Adam Jones was either in awe, or he just normally plays with a mainly emotionless face. Drummer Doyle’s youth was evident on his clean-shaven face revealing chubby cheeks that women were probably dying to pinch.

Later Davy said, “We visited the Chicago Blues Festival and finally got to see BB King last night. Anything we do here tonight will be inconsequential to that.” The crowd did NOT agree. In King’s honor, they introduced and then launched into “Riding With The King” by John Hiatt but recorded by BB King and Eric Clapton.

Other numbers performed were a ripping rendition of Muddy Waters’ “Hootchie Cootchie Man,” a surprising Crosby, Stills, and Nash cover, “Almost Cut My Hair,” a number played on a Gibson acoustic guitar about being on the road, a killer version of the album’s track 1 “Come Home,” and, following an explanation of how the band was named for a Robert Cray song, they played “Back Door Slam” from Cray’s “Time Will Tell” CD.

The set’s 10th song featured intense string burning on “Tear Down The Walls,” and to introduce number 11, Knowles said, “Here is some blues for ya. It is by Jimi Hendrix. We’re going to attempt ‘Red House.’” Needless to say, it was a great “attempt” full of soulful power like what can be seen on videos.

For their final song, the boys brought up a friend from “age 13” – Chicago bluesman Steve Arvey. As the story goes, Arvey had performed some eight yeas ago at an Isle of Man blues festival and also put on guitar workshops attended by the 13 year olds who were also performing there. A fast friendship formed and contact maintained through e-mails ever since. The affable Arvey kept referring to the band as “my boys.” They led each other through a wonderful version of Willie Dixon’s “What in the World” full of lick-trading and call and response.

Fans would not let them off without an encore in which they did two numbers. The first saw Davy on an un-amplified mandolin. Was he letting us down easy? Hell no! The second and final number was back to a Stratocaster electric, ear bleed intensity, balls out blast that also gave the bassist a solo, and the drummer did a unique rhythm, thunder-drum solo. WHEW!

Catch these rising stars soon – either on an internet video or at Naperville IL, Saturday, July 26. Check

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.

Click image above to visit our website for tickets and more info!

Willie Big Eyes Smith

New CD

Born In Arkansas

CLICK HERE to Purchase this CD

Blues Link of the Week

BB King Official Website

BB King is a Grammy Award winner, Rock & Roll hall of Fame winner and reigning king of the blues so it was fitting that he headlined the 25th anniversary of the Chicago Blues Fest.

He has been a recording artist for over five decades with countless entries in the rhythm and blues charts. His performance made us want to tell you to see him NOW! He still has it and his band is the BEST around.

Check out his website to see his current performance schedule and just get there! Tell them The Blues Blast sent ya!

For more Blues links, CLICK HERE to visit the Links Page

The Code Blue Band

Tight at Midnight

Intensely energetic R&B, funk, and rockin' Blues

CLICK HERE to buy the CD

Featured Blues Review (1 0f 3) SCROLL DOWN For More

Bonnie Bramlett - Beautiful

Rockin’ Camel

Bonnie Bramlett is a famous person who pretends not be famous. I remember her when she was singing as a young girl around St. Louis in all the blues bars. That was when she was called Bonnie Lynn O’Farrell when she was living in Alton Illinois. She moved off to the big city some years later and we all in Alton forgot about her. Then about 1969 or around that time I heard her on the radio with Eric Clapton and saw her on a Grammy show and I guess the rest was history. She’s been in and out of the spotlight since then, I’ve been told, but I really hadn’t heard much from her until I was in a record store about a week back and saw her on the cover of this album. I picked it up and gave it a listen.

She really got me going with the first tune. It sounded like those old Malaco Records I used to listen to, with what they call southern fried soul now. The song called “Sure Got A Way With My Heart” made me remember those old Denise LaSalle records, man. It also made me remember how good Bonnie was singing soul music. “Witness For Love” kind of had that same punch. I wasn’t quite convinced at first with the slow piano but then the horns kicked in and really got my foot tapping. The third song turns on some swampy rock. Sounds like some old song Ike & Tina Turner used to do. You know Bonnie was an Ikette back in the day right? A couple more tracks in she redoes the old song “For What It’s Worth” with some funky guitar and soul sounding vocals. Then, she hits you again with some more swamp rock on “Shake Something Loose.”

The only thing I don’t like about this album is that some of the songs sound preachy or it sounds a little too country and western for my taste. “Beautiful” and “Some of My Best Friends” are a little too straight forward for my taste. I guess she’s trying to pass on a message but it gets lost on me. She did some gospel work in the 80s I am a bit familiar with so I guess she feels its her duty to pass on the good word. Some folks might not like that too much. I really don’t think it’s a reason not to buy the album though. It’s got some good funk and soul in it that will make anyone happy.

By Jeremiah "Little Junior" James

For other reviews and interviews on our website CLICK HERE.

Mud Angels

A Bolt From The Blue

"A wealth of vocal & guitar melodies, performed by front woman Laura "Torch" England and guitarist Kenny Cobb." - Blues Blast Magazine

To Purchase this CD CLICK HERE

To read the Blues Blast CD review CLICK HERE

11th Annual Briggs Farm Blues Festival
July 11 & 12, 2008
Nescopeck, Pennsylvania, USA
Camping On Site

Nora Jean Bruso, Big George Brock, Johnny Rawls, Lonnie Shields, Clarence Spady, Bobby Kyle, Colin John & Michael Hill, Kelly Richey Sarah Ayers Band, Donovan Roberts, Mickey Jr. Acoustic Blues Revue Mark Armstrong, Bret Alexander 570-379-2003

Blues Society News

Send your Blues Society's BIG news or Press Release to:

Max of 125 words, Text or Word file ONLY.

The West Virginia Blues Society - Charleston, WV

The West Virginia Blues Society presents the Charlie West Blues Fest, June 28, 2008 at Coonskin Park, Charleston, WV. $12 Advance/$15 gate. The LINEUP includes Blues Crossing, Chad Freeman & Blue Revolution, Biscuit Rollers, The Carpenter Ants, Jill West & Blues Attack, Izzy & Chris, Patrick Sweany Band and Johnnie Rawls Blues Review. For more information please visit

Madison Blues Society - Madison WI

Madison Blues Society’s 6th Annual Blues Picnic is Saturday, June 21, 2008 from Noon to 9:30 PM at Warner Park in Madison, WI. Fantastic line-up of local and regional blues bands including Shari Davis & the Hootchy-Kootchy Band, Joe Nosek's Blues Kids, Cash Box Kings, Danny Miller Band, Mud Angels, Paul Filipowicz and Otis & the Alligators. The show is FREE and open to the public.

Illinois Central Blues Club Springfield, IL - Blue Mondays

Held at the Alamo 115 N 5th St, Springfield, IL (217) 523-1455 every Monday 8:30pm $2 cover - June 16 Deak Harp Blues Band from Illinois, June 23 HARPER from Australia, June 30 Levee Town from Kansas City

The Blues Blowtorch Society - Bloomington, IL

Blues Blowtorch Society presents the 2008 Central Illinois Blues Challenge on September 21, 2008 at the Tri-Lakes in Bloomington, IL. The winner will be sent to Memphis in early 2009 to compete as our representative in the International Blues Challenge. This year we are limiting the number of bands to five. To be considered bands must apply by July 18, 2008. The solo/duo acts competition is to be determined based on interest. For further information and submission guidelines, please contact Deborah Mehlberg, Entertainment Director at:

11th Annual Prairie Dog Blues Fest

Friday, July 25, 2008

Bobby Bryan Band Davina & the Vagabonds
Jason Ricci & New Blood
Walter Trout & the Radicals Moreland & Arbuckle

Saturday, July 26, 2007

The Bourbon Brothers Charles Walker Band
Nick Moss & the Flip Tops Kilborn Alley Blues Band
The Groove Hogs Bernard Allison Brandon Scott Sellner

Festival Website

The only Blues festival held on an island in the middle of the Mississippi River!

Prairie du Chien, Wisconsin on St. Feriole Island

Featured Blues Review (2 0f 3) SCROLL DOWN For More

Eric Bibb – Get On Board

Telarc Records

Every now and then, a true musical gem lands on your turntable. Get On Board, the 16th and latest CD by New York City native and current London resident Eric Bibb, is simply the best fusion of new and traditional blues, folk and soul that I’ve heard in some years. Bibb combines great writing—he wrote or co-wrote all but one song on the disk; great singing—reminiscent of George Benson; and great instrumentation—his own guitar work plus some standout Nashville cats; with some outstanding production, to bring forth his best disk yet. And, the man knows how to wear a Panama hat!

The twelve songs of Get On Board were recorded starting last year in Nashville, and finished with producer and back-up musician Glen Scott in Stockholm, Sweden, where the 57-year old Bibb lived for several years between New York and London.

Get On Board kicks off with “Spirit I Am,” a great soul-blues-gospel song about seeking out the good things in a troubled world. It begins with a catchy guitar hook that draws the listener in, to both the song and the rest of the disk. Next is, “The Promised Land,” a song that would have the listener believing Bibb knew all too well the cotton fields of the old south. It features Glen Scott on organ and Staffan Findin on slide guitar.

The third cut is titled, “New Beale Street Blues,” a traditional-sounding track paying homage to the musical and ethnic importance of Memphis and Beale Street. “Get On Board,” the title track, is a happy sounding tribute to all the love train songs that have rolled through musical history.

Bibb reminds the listener of George Benson with, “If Our Hearts Ain’t In It,” a southern soul admonition to put your heart and soul into something if you really believe in it. And just when you think this thought-provoking song couldn’t get any better, in comes a slide guitar solo from Bonnie Raitt. “Pockets” is a nice, cleverly-worded, folksy-sounding transition to an up-tempo ode to….pockets! And what we find—our should find—in them.

Then we get introspective again with “River Blues,” a tune that suggests watching the flowing river and blowing leaves if we need a distraction from our troubles. “Deep In My Soul,” an all-acoustic melody featuring the steel pedal guitar of Chuck Campbell for a bit of country gospel, keeps us looking inward in search of what’s positive.

“Conversation” is an old-fashioned big-band ballroom duet with Ruthie Foster, about making the most of not very much. It’s followed by “God’s Kingdom,” a straight-up old time religion gospel cut with a hint of anti war sentiment.

Bibb dedicates “Step By Step” to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., as he encourages the listener to not give up the fight for freedom and equality.

Last but not least is “Stayed On Freedom,” a simplistically but stylishly arranged and performed traditional civil rights song that you can almost imagine drifting up from the hot and humid plains of Mississippi not too many generations ago.

This one will be in my ride’s CD player for many miles to come. Two Mariestads up for Eric Bibb and Get On Board.

Reviewed By Rob Paullin

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Chicago Blues Update

Live Blues reviews by Chicago Blues editor Lordy

Blues Beat: Chicago (Photos by August Lord)

Marty Sammon and Rick King at Harlem Avenue Lounge

Marty Sammon’s piano is situated so he faces his band from across the stage. Obviously, he wants it right and tight. His drummer, Rick King already seems to know where Marty is going. The Sammon/King connection appears in other configurations around town and they bring some serious chops to whatever stage they grace. Don’t bother with Google. I already checked and yes, King Salmon is indeed the Alaska state fish. I’ve heard Marty Sammon and Rick King without any other players, and it’s a damn good show. Tonight add Mike Sterling on bass, and the saxophone of Jay Moynihan, and you know you’re going to stay for all three sets.

Tonight’s guitar player is Guy King. As usual then, Sammon presents an all-star band. Guy King is a headliner in his own right, and brings vocal chords with his six string.

From the opening instrumental, where everybody on stage gets some, you are reminded once again that Chicago is home to some of the world’s best players. Like a DJ with two turntables, Marty barely closes one song and he’s into the next. Some pictures captured Guy, Mike and Jay staring back across the stage for Marty’s queue.

I was impressed with Guy King’s style of playing. He often uses clean single note phrases that are melodic, interesting and he punctuates the phrases with a beautiful vibrato. Playing sans plectrum, it was a delight to hear more than a bag of riffs. “If the washin’ don’t get you, the rinsin’ sho nuff will” was a good example of Guy King’s singing ability. The other King that did that song would have approved.

Mike was his usual solid and Jay was once again a sax hero, deserving of his own video game counterpart. My favorite segments are when Sammon goes NOLA on us. He has the touch of the piano greats from the Crescent City down pat. He threw in “Good Night Irene” and some ragtime just to keep the other side of the stage on hyper-alert. A song Marty penned for his recording with Tom Holland has become a crowd favorite, and has my vote for breakout single (yes I remember Top 40 radio). The song is titled “The Church Where I Belong”, and is far more secular than sacred, but nonetheless should be getting airplay.

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Janiva Magness - What Love Will Do

Alligator Records

Run Time: 48:00

I don’t really have to explain who Janiva Magness is and was or where she’s going. In her own words, the blues chose her. She was born to do it. On her first “major” label release with Alligator Records, Janiva does not stray from the path. With firey, impassioned vocals you aren’t going to find anyone in the blues world more real and honest these days. Almost a complete soul album, Janiva gives us looks at Candi Staton, Little Milton, Tina Turner, Al Green, Bill Withers, Dorothy Moore, and Marvin Gaye. With acclaimed producer Dave Darling at the controls, this album will surely get a lot of attention next February in Memphis and probably Los Angeles with the Grammy folks.

Janiva hammers into Little Milton’s “That What Love Will Make You Do” come straight at you with the pulse of her rich voice and the blare of the Memphis-like horns. It’s hellfire that Janiva spews forth on one of the tracks penned by husband Jeff Turmes called “You Sound Pretty Good” that chronicles the ins and outs and ups and downs of the music business that delivers the extreme knockout blow on the album. Probably autobiographical, Janiva’s guile and sass comes to a head in this great kiss off to all those A&R men and record execs who never give people a chance who don’t have some kind of flash-in-the-pan gimmick to sell. The slow ballads will make you swoon and the deep soul delivered from the heart will candy coat your world the brief 48 minutes this album spins to its entirety.

Another great note to point to on the album is the crispness of all the musicians on the album and the length of the tracks. Never victim of overplaying and never allowing the tracks to drag on longer than they should, this album’s hallmark is its great homage to the soul genre which it represents. Did you ever notice a lot of your old favorite soul and classic R&B and blues songs never ran over 3 minutes? Janiva and company keep it to that simple formula here.

This may not be one of Janiva’s more “bluesy” releases but the influence is here. You don’t hear about many good soul records anymore. Janiva’s going to be around for a long long time. This album will only further cement the fact that she could sing you the phone book and it’ll get recognition somewhere. Visit Janiva on Myspace at:

Ben Cox is a Blues Songwriter, Musician, DJ and Journalist.

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