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Thursday, January 1, 2009

Bob Corritore Blues News

December 31, 2008

Festivals and great gigs: So many great on-stage moments this year! I did many great shows with The Rhythm Room All-Stars (Big Pete Pearson, Bob Corritore, Chris James, Patrick Rynn, and Brian Fahey), Dave Riley & Bob Corritore, and Tomcat Courtney, which are the three acts who I most regularly work with. Also, some great shows with Louisiana Red, Bob Riedy, Sam Lay, Eddy Clearwater, Tail Dragger, Diunna Greenleaf, Bob Margolin, Johnny Dyer, Paris James, Fiona Boyes, and more. I had some great sit-in moments last year with Billy Flynn, The John Németh Band featuring Junior Watson, Smokin' Joe Kubek Band featuring B'Nois King, Willie "Big Eyes" Smith, Elmore James, Jr., and Rob Stone and the C-Notes. Of course the majority of gigs were at my nightclub and home base, the Rhythm Room; but I also played many festivals and had three European trips this year. To recap some of the gig highlights:

The Rhythm Room All-Stars at the Santa Barbara Blues Society Anniversary Party (March 15, 2008)

Patrick's II in San Diego for a Tomcat Courtney CD release party (March 20, 2008)

The Spring Harp Fest in San Diego doing a killer Chicago blues set with Johnny Dyer (March 21, 2008)

The 25th Annual Gibson Glendale Jazz & Blues Festival with the Dave Riley/Bob Corritore Band (April 13, 2008)

The Blues Music Awards in Tunica, Mississippi appearing in a duet setting with Dave Riley (May 8, 2008)

The 3rd Annual Delta Groove Showcase (a huge and amazing event), in Tunica, Mississippi where The Rhythm Room All-Stars hosted a Blue Witch Records Revue set featuring vocalists Tomcat Courtney, Big Pete Pearson, Dave Riley, and Chris James (May 9, 2008)

The Silver City Blues Festival in Silver City, New Mexico with The Rhythm Room All-Stars (May 24, 2008)

Old Town Artisans in Tucson, with The Rhythm Room All-Stars as part of Jonathan Holden's Rhythm And Roots Concert Series (May 25 and September 9, 2008)

Buddy Guy's Legends in Chicago with Louisiana Red (June 5, 2008)

Reggie's in Chicago with Tail Dragger as part of at the American Blues Legends Management Showcase (June 7, 2008)

Mississippi Valley Blues Festival in Davenport, Iowa with The Rhythm Room All-Stars (July 4, 2008) (thank you, Harry Turner, for this and other bookings)

The Cognac Blues Passions Festival in Cognac, France with Dave Riley and Bob Corritore (July 25 and 26, 2008)

The Down Home Blues Festival at the Rhythm Room with The Rhythm Room All-Stars as the host band plus Tomcat Courtney, Tail Dragger, Eddie Taylor, Jr., and Paris James (August 31, 2008)

A duet set with Fiona Boyes before Elmore James, Jr. with the Cadillac Zack Band; also played the last 2 numbers of the night with Elmore Jr. (September 6, 2008)

Bisbee Blues Festival in Bisbee, AZ with The Rhythm Room All-Stars (September 20, 2008)

The Lahnstein Blues Festival in Lahnstein, Germany with both The Rhythm Room All-Stars and Louisiana Red (September 27, 2008) (Thank you, Volker Albold!)

Quiessence in Phoenix for a sold out show with Big Pete Pearson and Paris James (October 16, 2008)

The Lodge at Geneva Ridge in Lake Geneva Wisconsin, for a Bob Riedy Blues Band reunion show, with Eddy Clearwater, Sam Lay, Gabriel Butterfield, Chris James, and Patrick Rynn (October 30, 31, and November 1, 2008)

The Blues Blast Music Awards at Buddy Guy's Legends in Chicago with Dave Riley (November 2, 2008)

Aula de Cultura de Collblanc in Barcelona, Spain with Dave Riley (December 12, 2008) (Thank you, Vicente "Harmonica" Zumel)

Jazz Cava in Terrassa, Spain with Dave Riley (December 13, 2008) (Thank you, Vicente "Harmonica" Zumel)

Opening for Leon Russell at the Rhythm Room with Dave Riley (December 22, 2008)

Chief Schabuttie Gilliame's induction into the Arizona Blues Hall Of Fame with a wide array of hall of famers performing. Dave Riley and I kicked it hard on a nice band set with Brian Fahey on the drums. Congratulations, Chief! (December 28, 2008)

New Year’s Eve bash with The Rhythm Room All-Stars and special guest Tomcat Courtney

CDs Released: Bob Corritore's harmonica appeared on three CDs this year: Tomcat Courtney/Downsville Blues on Blue Witch Records (produced by Bob), Chris James and Patrick Rynn/Stop And Think About It on Earwig Music (produced by Chris and Patrick), and Louisiana Red/Back To The Black Bayou on the Bluestown Record label (produced by Little Victor).

Recording Sessions: I did some great sessions this year with Big Pete Pearson, Tomcat Courtney, Diunna Greenleaf, Bob Margolin, Tail Dragger, Eddie Taylor, Jr., and Louisiana Red. Special Thanks to Clarke Rigsby of Tempest Recording, John Wroble and Jeff Harris of Porcupine Studios, Dave Shirk of Sonorous Mastering, and Tony Amato of Amato Image Design.

Press and Recognition: Powerblues Charts: Dave Riley and Bob Corritore/Travelin' The Dirt Road was #1 on the Powerblues Charts in January, Tomcat Courtney/Downsville Blues was #2 for July/August, and Chris James and Patrick Rynn/Stop And Think About It was #1 in November. Living Blues Radio Charts: Chris James and Patrick Rynn/Stop And Think About It debuted the Living Blues Radio charts in September at #8, was #6 in October, and #11 in November; Big Pete Pearson's CD, I'm Here Baby on Blue Witch Records, was named among the top 50 blues CDs by Living Blues. Spain's SBB Blues Magazine (Societat de Blues Barcelona)(Hivern 2008 issue), listed Big Pete Pearson/I'm Here Baby on Blue Witch Records as # 6 in the "Top Blues En La FM Estatal" chart.

Interviews: Published Bob Corritore Interviews included BluesWax (click here to see), La Taberna del Blues (Spain) (click here to see), Blog Critics (click here to see) and a cover story in Belgium's Back To The Roots Magazine (click here to see). Radio Interviews: Bob was interviewed by Roy Prescott for his Blues Summit radio show from 93.5 WMWV of Conway, New Hampshire, by David Baerst of the French blues radio show Route 66, by Clarence Stevens of Blues You Can Use of WGVE 88.7 of Gary, Indiana, Robert Barclay, whose blues show Juke Joint airs on WCMU 89.5FM in Mount Pleasant, Michigan, and by Charlie Hussey, host of the Dublin, Ireland blues radio show Blues Train. J.P. Savouyaud of France's Virus De Blues aired a radio show titled Bob Corritore and Friends which featured numerous projects spanning Bob's career. Filmed interviews were conducted by Jeffry Dyson of the Blue Shoe Project about Bob's long friendship with Robert Lockwood, Jr.. Special thanks to the many publications, websites, and radio shows who kept who reviewed, played, and celebrated the music I was a part of and who consistently kept my name out there.

Nominations and Awards: Being recognized for a job well done is always a pleasure; 2008 was a good year and the awards and nominations were many, including:

Bob played harmonica on Pinetop Perkins' On The 88's CD that was up for a Grammy® this year in the Traditional Blues Category.

Dave Riley and Bob Corritore/Travelin' The Dirt Road was nominated for a 2008 Blues Music Award and a 2008 Blues Blast Music Award.

Bob's harmonica was also a part of three other 2008 Blues Music Award nominated releases: Nappy Brown/Long Time Coming on Blind Pig Records (Traditional Blues Album Of The Year), Pinetop Perkins/On The 88's - Live In Chicago on Sagebrush Productions/Vizztone Label Group (Blues DVD), and Various Artists/House Rockin' And Blues Shoutin!: Celebrating 15 Years Of The Rhythm Room on Blue Witch Records (Historical Album Of The Year).

Chris James and Patrick Rynn/Stop And Think About It was nominated for a 2009 Blues Music Award.

Nappy Brown/Long Time Coming won a Living Blues Award for Album Of The Year.

Big Pete Pearson/I'm Here Baby won a 2008 Independent Music Award for "Best Blues Album".

Tomcat Courtney/Downsville Blues was nominated for a 2009 Independent Music Award for "Best Blues Album".

Tomcat Courtney/Downsville Blues was nominated for Best Blues Album by the San Diego Music Awards.

The Rhythm Room All-Stars won a Phoenix New Times Best Of Phoenix Award for Best Blues Jam!

KJZZ won a Phoenix New Times Best Of Phoenix Award for best station for Blues and Jazz.

The Rhythm Room won a Phoenix New Times Best Of Phoenix Award for Blues Venue!

Bob Corritore was awarded an honorary membership in Europe's Collectif des Radios Blues.

Rhythm Room Concert Club: My nightclub presented a wide array of blues shows. National acts and Phoenix-based acts included Janiva Magness, Bill Lupkin, Little Charlie & The Nightcats, Johnny Rawls, The Fremonts, Zac Harmon, Candye Kane, Tomcat Courtney, Louisiana Red, John Németh with Junior Watson, Rod Piazza & The Mighty Flyers, San Pedro Slim, Jackie Payne/Steve Edmondson Band, Sam Lay, Bob Riedy, Tail Dragger, Eddie Taylor, Jr., Johnny Dyer, Long John Hunter, Phillip Walker, Elmore James, Jr. with Cadillac Zack, Doyle Bramhall, Guitar Shorty, Fiona Boyes, Chief Schabuttie Gilliame, Ronnie Baker Brooks, The Insomniacs, Sistah Blue, Patte' Williams, George Bowman, Rocket 88s, Mr. Boogie Woogie with Guitar Ray, Willie "Big Eyes" Smith, Too Slim and the Taildraggers, Tommy Dukes, Hillstomp, Cold Shott and the Hurricane Horns, Samuel James, Hans Olson, Bad News Blues Band, Big Pete Pearson, and of course The Rhythm Room All-Stars. Special thanks to Rhythm Room general manager Mona Watkins and assistant manager Jen Newhouse for holding down the fort while I am out traveling and touring. Thanks also to all the staff and patrons of the Rhythm Room, and to Martin Elmers, Randy Ledbetter, and Melissa Testa from the adjacent Rack Shack Barbeque.

Website: We have greatly expanded the photo section of as well as adding numerous articles, reviews, links, and our new international section. New photo pages include tribute pages to Tail Dragger, Ike Turner, Johnny Dyer, Robert Nighthawk, Honeyboy Edwards, CD cover art of this year's releases, the 2007 Lucerne Blues Festival, and a look at the work or photo collections of Bob Riedy, Lindsay Shannon, and the amazing André Hobus photo library. Please note also that all past newsletters are archived in the What's New! section of

Those Lowdown Blues on KJZZ: It is always my pleasure to be able to share my favorite music with the Phoenix community. With this being the 24th year of the radio show, much of this year was spent going through the archives in preparation for the 25th anniversary CD, which presents historic on-air performances from 1984 through 2008 (click here to see the album artwork of this soon to be released CD). We had great interviews with Bob Porter (a true blues radio icon), John "Johnny D" Dixon (doing our annual look at the 50s and 60s R&B scene of Phoenix), Janiva Magness, Dave Riley, Louisiana Red, Johnny Rawls, Long John Hunter, and others. Special thanks to my KJZZ assistant Jennifer Waters for her invaluable contributions, as well as program director Scott Williams, and retiring station manager Carl Matthusen. Thanks also to Tony Tingle who worked very hard to help the anniversary CD move forward.

Passings: There were many significant losses to the blues world this year. Each person had their own unique contributions to the music we love and will be greatly missed: Uncle Jesse White, Big Joe Turner (a different musician than the famous Atlantic Records vocalist), Bob Enos (of Roomful of Blues), Schoolboy Cleve, Buddy Miles, Jeff Healey, Francis Clay, Calvin Owens, Dillard Crume, Jr., Bill Coday, Lula Reed, Oscar McLollie, Skeeter Brandon, Sean Costello, DC Minner, Danny Rhodes, Chris Gaffney, Jimmy McGriff, Bo Diddley, Chuck Carbo, Jimmy Moore (of the 5 Royales), Isaac Hayes, Alex "Lil’ Bill" Wallace, Lee Young, Jerry Wexler, Maurice Reedus, Hosea Leavy, Phil Guy, Pervis Jackson (of The Spinners), Little Arthur Duncan, Pete Allen, Norman Whitfield, Nappy Brown, Fernest Arceneaux, Earl Palmer, Dee Dee Warwick, Nathaniel Mayer, Levi Stubbs (of The Four Tops), Studs Terkel, Rudy Ray Moore, Mae Mercer, Doris Carr, Robert Lucas, Alice Mae Burnside, Pat Ramsey, Chico Banks, Odetta, Bobbye King, Texas Pete Mayes, Eartha Kitt, and Robert Ward.

The promise of 2009 is great with new releases, gigs and festivals on the schedule, recording sessions, and many other exciting plans. Thanks to all the friends and fans who have shown such support and encouragement. Thanks to great musicians that I have been so privileged to work with. Thanks to the clubs, festivals, and booking agents that believe in me and my musical associates. Thanks to Dale Baich and Beth Lipham of Blue Witch Records, the Phoenix Blues Society, Jerry Del Giudice and Edward Chmelewski from Blind Pig, Scott Cable, the producer of the Nappy Brown/Long Time Coming CD, Michael Frank from Earwig Music, Randy Chortkoff of Delta Groove Productions, Pete Carlson from Sagebrush Productions, Chip Eagle, Richard Rosenblatt and Bob Margolin from the Vizztone Label Group, Jostein Forsberg from Bluestown Records, and Little Victor for including me on his Louisiana Red production. Thanks to Bill and Sheila Wax, Illinois Blues, and The Blues Foundation. Thanks to Scott Dirks for all the valuable work he does behind the scenes in the blues. Special thanks also to photographers David Blake, Jen Taylor and Scott Allen of Vivid Pix, Aigars Lapsa, Dragan Tasic, Sylvia Pitcher, Daniel Swadener, Art Tipaldi, David Horwitz, Nena Anderson, Tony Tomlinson (of The Fremonts), Donovan Allen, Dusty Blues, Jef Jaisun, The André Hobus Library, Jim O'Neal, and many others, too numerous to name, whose great images were featured on CDs and the website. Thanks to the writers and publications who covered my work in the blues. Thanks to my lovely Kim Danielson who stands by my side through it all. A heartfelt thank you to everyone.

-Bob Corritore

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