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Monday, September 3, 2012

Bob Dorr And The Blue Band Update

Labor Day weekend, so let's celebrate the working musician by workin' it baby!...
Saturday, (9/1) The annual Grape Stomp at the picturesque Park Farm Winery in Bankston (just a little northwest of Dubuque) Yes, you can actually take off your shoes and stomp them grapes! Music starts at 2pm, Blue Band 4-7p. No worries about rain (none predicted) as the ENTIRE outdoor deck can be enclosed in one of the most amazing, form fitted tenting systems I've EVAH seen! You can wine, but you can't whine.
Sunday (9/2) brings another end of summer celebration on the bank of the Wapsipinicon River at historic FB & Co in Waubeek (about 20 minutes northeast of Cedar Rapids) The Blue Band has done beginning of summer/middle of summer/end of summer shows at many locations around the FB grounds since 1984 (I'm gonna estimate 75-100 dates) Owner Tim Kula has hinted that this year could be the end of outdoor shows (he starts getting that mailbox money in 2013) so, GET IT WHILE YOU CAN! Music Starts at 2pm, Blue Band 5:30-dark. FB facebook page:
But wait, summer outdoor shows are not over!! Thursday (9/6) (reminds me of the Jimi Hendrix song If 6 Were 9) (yes, there is a constant life soundtrack going on in my head) is the annual Cedar Valley Chamber WING DING THING!! Numerous food stations, inexpensive (but not cheap) beer, and dancing with The Blue Band at the glorious sounding city bandshell in Overman Park, right here in Sparkle City USA!! We play 5-8pm. Advance tickets are only $7 and includes visits to all the eating stations (still an incredible deal at the $10 gate price) Food, beer, dancing all to benefit on-going Chamber projects. What's not to like, right Avis? More info on the gig and advance ticket locations:
And next Friday (9/7) finds us helping to kick off a new citywide event in my old hometown, Davenport (Quad Cities USA) The East West Riverfest celebrates all things Quad Citian (I'll be bringing my Sudlow Jr. High and KSTT mugs) We play the RiverCenter, 136 East 3rd St, 7-9pm. Check out all the activities in this week-long festival:
I still do not have all the specifics (time/place) on our performance along the running route of the Denver Marathon on Sept. 22, but we sure are looking forward to reconnecting with our Mile High friends! Ironically, I had hoped to get Blue Band alum Nathan Peoples, who's been living in the Denver area for a few years now, to join us for the Marathon show, but I just got a call from him saying HE'S MOVING BACK TO DES MOINES (!) the week before we'll be in Denver! I think Nathan is the most gifted musician that has ever passed thru our band (that's really saying somethin', if you think of all the talent that's been part of our band for 31 years) To hear that he's moving back and would like to be part of the group when his schedule allows, just makes me SO happy! Thank you for this holiday gift Mr. Peoples!...
Nathan's shot of "reason to persevere" really comes at a good time. The first Sat. in August, BF Burt & The Instigators announced the end of their 20 year run. The last Saturday in August gave us the announcement of the "indefinite hiatus" from Matt Woods & The Thunderbolts after their mega successful seven year run. This makes me think too much. There are so many pitfalls along the Blue Highway with anything from band member's health, to broken down equipment vans, to an inability to make a living, to family obligations, to "artistic differences" (and at least 100 more reasons) getting in the way of perseverance. Occasionally, I have to go back to a quote that I find inspirational: "Nothing in the world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not: nothing is is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not: unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not: the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent." My friend Pete says that's from Calvin Coolidge. I don't know for sure, but I do take inspiration from it occasionally. The Blue Band already has assurances from The IA State Fair, that, if we can keep it going, they'd love to have us back on that stage for the 30th year during the summer of 2013! That's all the inspiration I need! Oh, and some work would be good too (nothing beats gainful employment for trying to keep a band together!) Please keep spreadin' the True Blue word. Jeff and I can do a duo or deliver you the full 7 piece version of The Blue Band. We'd love to be part of the party.
Congrats go out to Blue Band founding member Molly Nova, who will be inducted, this weekend, into the Iowa Rock'nRoll Music Association Hall of Fame in the "Women Who Rocked" category. I am fortunate to have been along for nearly 25 years of those "Rockin' Years". I'm proud of her. She's SO deserving of this recognition. We have not heard from Molly since the Blue Band's induction in 2007. If you're in Okoboji for the ceremonies, please pass along congrats from her Blue family...
My "gateway to the blues" was the British Invasion bands of the early 60s. This week's Blue Avenue radio show is devoted entirely to the British blues scene from the late 50s to 1970. Sun. at 5pm on Iowa Public Radio:
See yas on the Holiday Blue Highway (remember the Highway Patrol is workin' OVERTIME this weekend) rub yer washboard to the old Isley Bros. song "Work To Do" (WORK WITH ME, BABY) remember that all holidays go better with CAKE (go ahead, admit it, you KNEW that was gonna get in there somewhere) Enjoy the weekend and always know that we love you, Bob Dorr & The Blue Band

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