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Monday, June 22, 2009

John Hammer Blues Update


This Week On

Hammered By The Blues
KOWZ 1170am Sunday at 10pm (When sports talk ain't on)
On the Internet:
Tues 9am
and Sat. 11am

AZ Kenny Tsak

'Like I Do'

'Dearest Darlin'

Homemade Jamz
'I Got Blues For You'
Important Links
Fresh Stuff Ya Wanna Know
June Blue Monday
now On Line
(July will be up June 26)
June 26-27:
Hambone Blues Jam
Hayward, MN
* Checkout the 7 Day LIVE Blues Forecast*

Yo! Blues Buddies:

Be sure to visit to read our entire June issue. Pass this along to friends and tell them they can sign up for this weekly e-bluesblast right on the bottom of the first page of the website. Check out the links and support yer local blues band! Hope to see you at a LIVE show soon! Until then, Take care of each other, and we'll catch up with ya real soon!
John 'blueshammer' Hammer

Heatin' Up the Freshest on Yer Radio

As we flirt with record temps; we're gonna spin some records you just won't be able to get enough of.. This week on Hammered By The Blues ( Sunday on KOWZ 10pm on 1170am. Classic episodes rebroadcast on line Tues at 9am and Sat at 11am on we hit the old homestead mailbox on the right side of the crossroads for a few treats. We kick our roll with AZ kenny Tsak and 56 Deluxe settin' the bar awful high with some hot smokers off 'Like I Do'. Then we will share a 'date' with Jenni Muldaur as she steams things up with tasty tracks off 'Dearest Darlin'. Tossin' that giant cherry on top of yer blues Sunday, we will attempt to cool ya down by racin' down the blues highway with the wind in our hair and Homemade Jamz in our ears as these kids just nail it with select cuts off 'I Got Blues For You'. Step outside; turn up that dimestore pocket transistor radio and take the party down the block!
We got just what ya need in blues screamin' hot;
We make the blind see and the dead get up off their cot;
It's only good sense to Tune in to Hammered By The blues;
We hold nothin back so's you got nothin' to lose!
Brennan Totten
By Chuck Benedon
I was at a jam session in a small town in Southeast Wisconsin. I noticed a guy who was watching the players with a certain curious interest. Between sets, I went over to him and said, "You're a player, aren't you?" "Yeah" he responded. "But, I haven't played in a while." I asked if he had brought his guitar, which he had not. He said he was new to the area and preferred to come the first time and just watch. A week or two later, he showed up with his guitar, a '70's era Gibson 175. He had a certain authenticity to his playing that piqued my own curiosity. As he came out more often, we had opportunities to play together at the jam and became friends and started to talk about playing some gigs together. That was over ten years ago, and we continue to be good friends with the Blues being part of the glue that binds us, today. We used the jam to learn each other's styles and nuances in playing. I grew up on R&B and early 60's rock, with some mix of blues, as it appeared in R&B. During the early '70's I played cover rock such as Clapton, Stones, Allman Brothers, and others with a mix of Blues from Albert King to Freddy King. So, I was as much of a rocker as I was any kind of blues player. Then one Sunday evening at the jam, Brennan brought a friend along. He was Harry "The Harpoon" Yates. Yates didn't have an axe with him, but did play guitar. He asked for mine, which was open tuned, at the time. He said he was fine with that, as he actually could only play open tunings. He wasn't joking. He and Brennan played Blues in a way I had not heard in a long time. Harry put a spin on the harp that reminded me of Sonnyboy and Little Walter. His slide guitar along with Brennan's percussive rhythms and soulful solos convinced me that from that point, all I wanted to do was to play Blues. For the next 5 years, I wouldn't even listen to any other musical form, because I wanted to learn REAL Blues and didn't want other styles to corrupt my playing. I swapped Harry for one of his Dobros and he showed me some 20's and 30's style licks and off to the land of Blues... I went out and bought every old recording I could find and played some over and over until I understood what the true essence of the blues is. Robert Johnson, Blind Blake and Elmore James became my traveling buddies in the car. With Brennan's help and guidance, by his being there and especially in my vocals, I think I've become a true Bluesman, something I am quite proud of. Brennan is a humble and noble guy. It wasn't until I knew him for quite some time, that I found out he had toured Europe, playing with the likes of Big Joe Turner, George "Harmonica" Smith, and Jonathan Richman, and appearing on bills with Blues legends like Albert Collins, and Lowell Fulson. He was a record producer for Rounder and is an extraordinary technician in the studio. He is mentioned in the latest book on Elmore James, because Brennan was the only guy who ever figured out how Elmore got his sound. Today, Brennan and I are best of friends and have hosted jam sessions in the outskirts of Milwaukee for about 10 years, with some short breaks between gigs. Our playing has a reciprocity that is as good as any, as our solos have become flawlessly intertwined, even though after playing together for over 10 years, we have maintained our own unique playing styles. Our bass players of choice, whom we have worked with for many years, are Mike Haasch and P.T. Pedersen. P.T. was Charlie Musslewhite's bassist during the seventies and is a solid natural blues bassist. He gets the call, every year, for the Chicago Blues Fest and has sat in with a myriad of nationally known blues artists. Our drummer of choice is our good friend and long time master of percussion, Tom Utschig. Tom played with Luther Allison for a short period. We have done some studio work and Brennan and I are currently going through our catalogue of recordings and trying to decide which one we might use for a CD.

TwinCities & other MN venues:
Mon 22-Mick Sterling/Camp Odayin Golf Benefit
-Reverend Raven & the Chainsmokin' Altar Boys/Macho Nacho; Rochester
Tue 23-Reverend Raven & the Chainsmokin' Altar Boys/Timber's Edge; Eveleth
-Big Walter Smith; Holland & Oakland opening/Roseville Park; Roseville
Wed 24-Scottie Miller & the Re-Uptake Inhibitors/Narrows; Navarre
-Reverend Raven & the Chainsmokin' Altar Boys/Live Downtown; Duluth
Thu 25-Brandon Scott Sellner/McMahon's; Mpls
-The Irresistibles/Champps; Maple Grove
-Davina & the Vagabonds/Riverfront Concert Series; Elk River
Fri 26-Mick Sterling/Dunn Bros; Excelsior
-The Irresistibles/Tiffany's; St Paul
-Lamont Cranston/Western Fest; Granite Falls
-Paul Mayasich/Shaws; Mpls
-Davina & the Vagabonds/Dakota Cty Steakhouse; Burnsville
-Inside Straight/N St Paul VFW
-Moses Oakland Quartet/Applewood Rustic Grill; Burnsville
Sat 27-Brandon Scott Sellner/Timber's Edge; Eveleth
-Top Shelf/Faribault Hockey Arena; Faribault
-Big Walter Smith/St Anthony Main; Mpls
-Davina & the Vagabonds/Dakota Cty Steakhouse; Burnsville
-Inside Straight/SOS Social Club; Oakdale
-Dave Lambert/Eagles Landing; Winthrup
Sun 28-Scottie Miller/Northern Vineyard; Stillwater
-Brunch w/Davina/Trygs; Mpls
-Memphis & the Meantimes/Whiskey Junction; Mpls
-Paul Mayasich/Neumann's; St Paul
-Brandon Scott Sellner/Live Downtown; Duluth
Mon 29-Davina & the Vagabonds/Famous Dave's; Mpls
Tue 30-Mick Sterling & Friends/Victoria Bar & Grill; Victoria

Iowa Venues:
Wed 24-Curtis Salgado/Blues On Grand
Fri 26-Chubby Carrier/Mainstreet Waterloo
-Matt Woods & the Thunderbolts/Blues On Grand
Sat 27-Sumpin' Doo/Blues On Grand

Wisconsin Venues:
Fri 26
-Mudcat & the Bottomfeeders/Piggy's; La Crosse
Sat 27-Mudcat & the Bottomfeeders/Piggy's; La Crosse

BB's Jazz Blues & Soups-St. Louis, MO:
Go to for more

Ground Zero Blues Club-Clarksdale, MS:
Wed 24-Guitar Mikey & the Real Thing
Fri 26-Marshall Drew Blues Band

Ground Zero Blues Club- Memphis, TN
Sun 21-Spoken Soul
Sat 27-Eric Hughes
Sun 28-Juke Joint Jam

Wed 24-Sat 27
-JUNEBUG FESTIVAL OF MUSIC/4 Days; 4 Venues; 20 Bands & Artists!/Northfield, MN Info:
Fri 26-Sat 27-8TH ANNUAL HAMBONE BLUES JAM/Hayward, MN Info:

Every Week All Month Long (all venues)
Every Sunday
-Tom Hunter(10:45a)/United Methodist Church; Minnetonka, MN
-Cadillac vs. Cornbread/Palmer's; Mpls
-Blues Jam w/ Big Bob Scoggin/McMahon's Irish Pub; Mpls
-Toby Marshall/(7-10)Cherokee Sirloin Room; W St. Paul
-Barbara Blue/(4-8)Silky O'Sullivan's; Beale St-Memphis, TN
-Open Blues Jam w/ Moses Oakland/(8p) Famous Dave's; Mpls
-Open Blues Jam /Floyd's; Victoria, MN
Every Monday-Best Damn Blues Jam in Town/Shaw's Bar & Grill; Mpls
-Willie Murphy/American Legion #523; Golden Valley, MN
-True Blue Mondays-Lunch w/ Ellis Kell/(12p)Mojo's-River Music Experience;
Every Tuesday-Paul Mayasich & Friends/Hollihan's; White Bear Lake
-Big Daddy Cade/(8p)Centerfields; Mpls
-Bob Pace & the Blues Groove/Blues On Grand; Des Moines, IA
Every Wednesday-Blues Jam w/Curtis & the Kicks/Jethro's Char House; N St Paul, MN
-The Butanes/Eagles Club #34; 25th St., Mpls
-Dave Lambert/Neisen's; Savage; MN
-Paul Mayasich & Friends/School of the Wise II; Chanhassen, MN
- Root City/Glueks; Mpls
- John Iden & Jim Ouska/TGI Fridays; Eden Prairie, MN
- Big Daddy Cade Jam/(7p)Baggins; Fridley, MN
- Curtis Marlatt & the Kicks hosted Jam/Jethro's Char House; Mahtomedi, MN
-Barbara Blue/(7-9)Silky O'Sullivan's; Beale St-Memphis, TN
-Wed. Blues Jam/Nighthawks Tap; La Crosse, WI
- Matt Woods & the Thunderbolts/Blues On Grand; Des Moines, IA
- Open Mic Night/Redstone Room-River Music Experience; Davenport, IA
- Cryin' Shame; Big Mike Aguirre/BB's Jazz Blues & Soups; St Louis, MO
Every Thursday - Dan Ristrom & the Big Throwdown/Gluek's; Mpls
- John Burlingame hosts Acoustic Open Mic Night/Main Entrance; Prairie du Chien, WI
-Barbara Blue/(7-9)Silky O'Sullivan's; Beale St-Memphis, TN
- Legendary Blues Jam/Blues On Grand; Des Moines, IA
- Blues Jam/Ground Zero Blues Club/ Clarksdale; MS
- Leroy Pierson/(7-9:30)BB's Jazz Blues & Soups; St. Louis, MO
Every Friday-The Butanes/McMahon's; Mpls
-Front Porch Swingin' Liquor Pigs/Eagles #34; Mpls
-Barbara Blue/(7-9)Silky O'Sullivan's; Beale St-Memphis, TN
-Leroy Pierson/(7-9:30)BB's Jazz Blues & Soups; St. Louis, MO
Every Saturday-Barbara Blue/(5-9)Silky O'Sullivan's; Beale St Memphis

1 comment:

56 Deluxe said...

The 56 Deluxe Girls say thanks so much for playing AZ KENNY TSAK's new release "LIKE I DO" on your show!