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~ Blues News ~
Nineteen years ago this week, “Ledbetter Heights” by 18 year old blues guitarist Kenny Wayne Shepherd
went to #1 on the Billboard Blues charts, and remained there for 20 weeks, selling over 500,000 copies in the
first few months of its release. We also celebrate Jimmie Vaughan’s birthday this week. He was born in
Dallas, Texas in 1951.
Detroit Blueswoman Eliza Neals is featured in an interview this week at americanbluesscene.com. Check it
Senior Blues Blast writer Terry Mullins has a new book out, titled “Blues In Modern Days – 31 Artists In
Their Own Words”. Published by Blues Blast Publishing, those featured include Magic Slim, James Cotton,
and Mud Morganfield, to name a few.
Dan Aykroyd is taking the next step in his commitment to the blues with the launch of his own record label.
Alongside Judy Belushi, widow of his Blues Brothers co-star John, Aykroyd has created Blues Brothers
Records in order to nurture and develop new blues artists. The label will be distributed by Capitol Music
Group's Blue Note Records.
Keb’ Mo’ was recently interviewed by The Huffington Post, and discusses how the blues and church go hand
in hand, in his opinion.
The Jon Spencer Blues Explosion’s new release, Freedom Tower: No Wave Dance Party 2015, is due via Mom
+ Pop Records on March 24th.
American Blues Scene has teamed up with Concord Music Group to provide exclusive first listens to new
blues releases. This week's feature by C.C. Rider the Venerator is none other than the great Fats Domino.
Check it out at americanbluesscene.com.
The HART Fund recently received a $6000 donation, raised at the Valentine’s Day fundraiser at the Rhythm
Room in Phoenix. Club owner Bob Corritore donated all proceeds from the door. Additional funds were
raised from the auction that was held.
Although the Grand Opening of the Blues Hall of Fame is not taking place until May 8, The Blues
Foundation has just moved their office from the space they had been renting back to 421 South Main.
Construction on the Blues Hall of Fame continues.
The latest edition of Living Blues Magazine features a passage on Ms. Alberta, music reviews, new releases,
and much more. Blues Blast Magazine's current issue is also chock full of reviews and new release
information in the blues world.
Santa Rosa just celebrated its 24th Annual Tattoos and Blues Festival at the Flamingo Hotel.
Musicians in Roanoke recently held a fundraiser for a fellow musician and chef, Ray Crawford, of
Roanoke's Blues BBQ Co. Crawford was struck by a truck while heading to work in December.
Subsequently, his injuries have left him unable to work, causing his medical bills to pile up.
The great, Lloyd Price was born in Louisiana, his very first recording for Specialty Records in 1952 became
an instant hit. The piano intro was courtesy of another New Orleans legend: Fats Domino.
The world of playing, recording, writing, composing and managing music is explained at the new Dinah and
Fred Gretsch Family Gallery at Music City’s Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum. It’s located just
two blocks away from the Summer NAMM show. The Gallery allows visitors to mix a band recording, cut a
vocal track, understand the dynamics of guitar building and more... plus displays a variety of historic guitars
and other instruments. The Gallery was created through a generous donation by Gretsch Company
president Fred Gretsch and his wife Dinah, who is the historic guitar-and-drum builder’s executive vice
president and chief financial officer, through the Gretsch Foundation.
Bluesman Robert “Wolfman” Belfour has passed away. His neighbors and friends included R.L. Burnside
and Junior Kimbrough. Wolfman was a staple in the Clarksdale, Mississippi area. After a long hiatus, he
began playing again in the Memphis area before releasing two albums through Fat Possum Records.
Looking for info on the best new releases in blues? Then head on over to bluesblastmagazine.com to ensure
that you don’t miss out!
This week's blues history lesson involves bluesman Pink Anderson. A musician and a medicine man, Pink
also was a part of traveling horse and wagon teams that peddled “miracle cures” between variety show acts
in the early 1900's. Many early blues performers cut their teeth on the medicine show circuit. During the
1950's, his legacy in the blues world was cemented.
Just a reminder: the 2015 Living Blues 'Blues Today Symposium' will be held on April 9th at the University
Chicago bluesman Chicago Slim, who is also a surgeon, has been making it his mission to help the aging
population of local blues stars navigate the health system, providing free care through his non-profit One
Patient Global Health Initiative. S
onghoy Blues have announced details of their debut album, ‘Music In Exile’. Out February 23rd on
Transgressive, the album is co-produced by Yeah Yeah Yeahs’ Nick Zinner and Marc-Antoine Moreau.
Brad Hatfield’s newest self-released album, For A Change, consists of 12 tracks, clocking in at 49 minutes.
The album features Brad Hatfield on harmonica and vocals, Bob Britt on guitar, Kevin McKendree on
piano and organ, Tommy MacDonald on the bass, and Tom Hambridge on drums, percussion, and backing
With the 2015 IBC just concluding, Americanbluesscene.com ran an interesting story on the history of Beale
Street, discussing not only the blues and entertainment aspect, but the darker parts of its history as well.
Blues Blast Magazine has a ton of brand new album reviews, as well as upcoming blues gigs listed. Check
out bluesblastmagazine.com for all of the updates.
Lancaster Roots and Blues is being held Feb. 6 and 7 in downtown Lancaster. The event features concerts
by more than 50 national and regional bands held on 10 stages at eight venues -- all within a few blocks of
each other. Performers include LIVE, Steep Canyon Rangers, Joe Louis Walker, Iris Dement, Iron
Butterfly, Savoy Brown and Jerron "Blind Boy" Paxton.
Jack White's recent show at Madison Square Garden in New York City was all about the blues. He
discussed how powerful his recent visit to Mississippi was, and why he has such a deep love for the blues and
its rich history. NPR ran a recent article on Paramount Records and blues music, and discussed Third Man
Records and Revenant's recent releasing of Paramount's blues catalog.
Elvin Bishop is officially a top vote-getter this year, with six nominations for the 36th Blues Music Awards,
happening May 7th. Speaking of the Awards- The Blues Foundation has listed cut off dates and rates for
several downtown Memphis-area hotels. In order to secure a room with the best rates possible, be sure to
book yours today.
A recent issue of Blues Blast Magazine is available, and features album reviews, show dates, and much
more. The issue also features an update on the 2015 shows that the Crossroads Blues Society of IL is hard
at work on.
Please visit msbluesmarathon.com for all the info. The Music Maker Relief Foundation's goal is the keep
the lights on for blues and roots musicians who are largely indigenous, so that they can focus on making
music. Founded in 1994, they aim to help some of the best musicians who may need a little extra assistance.
The 2015 Blues Music Award nominees were announced on Wednesday, December 10th. The Blues
Foundation will also be making announcements about ticket sales and voting. Anyone can buy a ticket to
the show on May 7th, but only Blues Foundation members can vote to decide who wins.
Bruce Katz has returned to his Blues, Jazz and Jam roots with the album Homecoming, on the American
Showplace Music label. A three time Pinetop Perkins Piano Player of the Year Blues Music Award nominee,
the release features plenty of instrumental jams.
Mike Zito sat down with americanbluesscene.com to discuss his departure from Royal Southern
Brotherhood. The interview is up now.