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January 10, 2008
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Hey Blues fans,
The new year starts us all planning what to do with our vacation time come the warmer Blues season. Why not plan on a Blues trip to see some live Blues at a festival near your vacation destination?
Also with the new year, Blues festival promoters and Blues societies begin work planning a great 2008 Blues season for all. Festival committees are hard at work booking Blues performers, planning their advertising budgets and getting ready to put on the next great Blues show.
For those of you doing the planning for these great Blues events, remember that the Blues Blast & IllinoisBlues.com's website are great ways to promote ANY Blues event or product. In fact we believe we just might have THE best Blues advertising vehicle anywhere to promote YOUR event!
For less than the cost of one small display ad in your local newspaper, you can advertise your festival, club show, new CD or any Blues product to a VERY targeted Blues audience. We promise great results getting the Blues word out for you.
Blues fans WANT to know about your Blues event of product. Call Bob at (309) 267-4425 or send an email to for a confidential quote today!
|New to the Blues Blast & IllinoisBlues.com? CLICK HERE to go directly to the IllinoisBlues.com list of Live Blues Music. Click a link for more Blues content. Reviews Links Audio Interviews Photos Videos Blues Radio To advertise your blues shows or event for FREE Click HERE! To see The Blues Blast Archives Click HERE|
Blues Link of the Week
Blues World is a labor of love by Blues enthusiast Joel Slotnikoff from St. Louis. His website has a ton of Blues links and many great Blues articles. Not all the content is readily apparent but if you search the page and click on some of the images you will find some real gems here. If you are into collectible records you will find lots of info here.
There is even a page dedicated to documenting the birth and death dates of Blues, jazz and rock & roll artists called eRIC's Blues Dates. CLICK HERE to check out eRIC's page and see if you were born on the same day as a Blues legend.
For more Blues links CLICK HERE to visit the IllinoisBlues.com Links Page
Streaming Blues Link of the Week
Rocket 88 plays rare Blues, Rock, Zydeco, Western Swing, Surf ,Rockabilly, Garage, Twisted Tunes and More. This one is like a box of chocolates, you never know what you will get! This very basic website has a great selection of music. While it is not ALL Blues, it has a great variety that will appeal to most Blues lovers. Click Here to listen.
Check out other great Blues Music Streams Click HERE
Other IMPORTANT News Help Save the music! CLICK HERE to Keep Blues Radio Alive!
Featured Blues Reviews
James “Skyy Dobro” Walker , noted Blues writer and Blues Blast contributor reviews a CD by Eric Lindell - Low On Cash, Rich In Love
By James “Skyy Dobro”
The top surprise of 2006 was the biggest Blues record label, Alligator, signing and promoting a non-Blues artist, Eric Lindell. In founder and president Bruce Iglauer’s own words, Lindell is “more roots rock than blues, with plenty of the musical flavors of his adopted hometown of New Orleans.” Iglauer began, “I’ve been pleasantly surprised by the way the blues community has embraced Eric Lindell.”
On a side note, indicative of “Blues’” niche in mainstream music, even though Alligator is the biggest label, it is still called an “indie” (independent) label among the legion of unincorporated indies.
Many bands have sent promo CDs to Iglauer hoping to get his label’s support machine behind them. As the New Orleans Times-Picayune pointed out, “Lindell has witnessed the impact a motivated record company can have on a musician's career. After years of ... little or no promotion, his songs are getting airplay on Triple-A and community radio stations and the Sirius and XM satellite networks. Airplay translates to paying customers at gigs.”
Richly talented, Lindell created a slightly Bluesier album for his second Alligator release, and songwriting continues as a forte as he originates simple but catchy love and lost-love songs. Lindell plays guitar and even plays Junior Wells inspired harp on a couple of songs. Eric’s voice is rough hewn, but it is an instantly pleasing mid-register voice reminiscent of Van Morrison or a young Delbert McClinton. His laid back vocals have the slight lazy slur of an unintentional hipster.
Lindell described his music thusly to the Times-Picayune, “Chris Mule (the band's guitarist) dug up this old Delbert McClinton CD called Delbert and Glen [Clark], from around 1972. It's this rootsy, bluesy, soul country. It reminded us of what we do, but with a country feel to it.... "It's not a far stretch from what we're already doing.”
Recorded at Piety Street Studio in New Orleans, the CD is all originals save one cover, a totally reworked version of Gil Scott-Heron’s “Lady Day And John Coltrane.” Saxophones have been added to the hook-laden melodies, grooves build on top of each other, and there’s full and thoughtful professional studio production. Bottom line: Iglauer has scored another success – this time through Blues’ roots rock side door.
For other reviews and interviews on our website CLICK HERE.
We also feature a review by Former Memphis radio guy Rob Paullin. Rob has sampled the blues in Venice, Kyiv and Beijing, among other foreign haunts. He says Berlin is next on his list.
By Rob Paullin
You’ve heard of the Phantom Blues Band. Even if you’ve NOT heard of the Handy and Grammy winners, you’ve heard them without even knowing it. Members Mike Finnigan on vocals and keyboards, Larry Fulcher on vocals bass, Johnny Lee Schell on vocals and guitar, Tony Braunagel on drums, and Darrell Leonard and Joe Sublett on a variety of horns, make not only their own great music, but they’ve also made great music with the likes of Buddy Guy and Otis Rush along with Stevie Ray Vaughan, the Stones, Jimi Hendrix and Taj Mahal.
Their new disk, Footprints, is an outstanding blend of sax and brass, skins, guitar, B3 and bass; with no instrument or voice trying to outdo the others. Musically, Footprints is an energetic collection of everything from gospel and reggae to funk and straight forward blues.
First up is “Look at Granny Run,” a non-stop cover on which Mike Finnigan reminds one of the vocalizations of the late Wilson Pickett. “Granny” is followed… or chased away… by “See See Baby,” which sounds very similar to the old classic rock and roll diddy, “See See Rider.” With Johnny Lee Schell providing the vocals, it works just as well. The funk-driven “Leave Home Girl” is Larry Fulcher’s excellent cover of an old Earl Randle song about love in the shadows.
The Phantom Blues Band changes tempo with Mike Finnigan’s sad but compelling vocal strains on “Cottage For Sale.” The tempo and theme brighten with the first of two highly danceable “fowl” songs: The cover of the late Mayor of Beale Street, Rufus Thomas’ clever “Fried Chicken,” followed by the first of four originals, Fulcher, Finnigan and Schell’s double entendre tribute to the ones that rule the roost. You’ll get it when you hear it….
There’s a hint of southern gospel in “Your Heartaches Are Over,” a song that promises a new beginning to a lover betrayed, and then a cover of the lyrically clever “ My wife Can’t Cook.” Next, Larry Fulcher drags us through the swamp with the slide guitar powered original, “When Malindy Sings.”
You’ll think of Dr. John or even the Radiators when you listen to “Chills and Fever” then you’ll feel like popping the umbrella for that rainy day on “A Very Blue Day.”
The bluest song on Footprints is the band’s cover of the Ray Charles classic, “A Fool For You,” on which Finnigan pours his heart out for a lover who found pleasure in the arms of another.
The last song on Footprints may be the best: The original, “When the Music Changes,” an upbeat, optimistic, radio-friendly tune with more than a pinch of Bob Marley-style reggae.
As individuals, the members of the Phantom Blues Band have had spectacular careers, if primarily in the shadows of others. Their latest disk, Footprints, shows they have everything it takes to be spectacular as a band. I recommend it highly.
Reviewers Note: Rob Paullin had the pleasure of seeing the then 83-year old Rufus Thomas in one of his last performances at Handy Park in Memphis, and salutes the Phantom Blues Band for paying tribute to this American original. He now looks forward to seeing the Phantom Blues Band.
CLICK HERE to visit the bands website and listen to some sample tracks.
Chicago Blues Update
Live Blues reviews by Chicago Blues editor Lordy
Blues Beat: Chicago (Photos by August Lord)
Nellie “Tiger” Travis at Buddy Guy's Legends
I like to go out and listen to live blues music between the holidays. Of course, I mean between New Years and Christmas usually, but I like to include the short period between Christmas and New Years also.
Blues diva, Nellie “Tiger” Travis appeared at Buddy Guy’s Legends during the recent holiday week. Most blues fans outside the Chicago area are aware of this famous venue, so I don’t cover it as much as some of the lesser known suburban haunts, but knowing that it is moving to a newer location made this kind of a pilgrimage. I am so religious that I have been there four times last month. Chicago stalwart, Johnnie Drummer and his band opened the night and got our clapping’ hands ready and warm.
Nellie “Tiger” Travis brings a lot of Southern soul to her blues. She is an entertainment package for sure, displaying attitude when necessary and soul continuously. She will engage you in the party, so don’t try to hide. Her version of “I’d Rather Go Blind” is moving, and reminds me of the song before it was a beer commercial. Her band is essentially The Masheen Company band led by Ronnie Hicks. Both Hicks on keys and Kenny Hampton on bass contribute to vocals with especially smooth soul harmonies. Max the Argentina Soul Brother was on lead guitar and Nellie’s son was on drums.
My Tiger favorite is “I’ll Take You There.” With such a capable and tight band, and her passionate voice, you most certainly will tap your feet. I was thinking “Hell, that girl could take me anywhere.”
If you are coming to Chicago for one of Buddy Guy’s 21 Nights in January, you may be run across Nellie “Tiger” Travis and her band. Buddy has given them the honor of opening for him on one of the evenings.
CLICK HERE to visit Lordy's website at ChicagoBluesBeat.com
To see a Chicago Area list of upcoming events CLICK HERE
If you know of a Chicago Blues event or news, please send it to
To hear some song samples or purchase this CD now - CLICK HERE
"From the opening chords and boogie beat
of the first track you know you’re in for some deep blues!" -
To purchase this CD now
or visit your favorite local music shop
and support music in your neighborhood.
(To read the full review of
MALKUM GIBSON and
THE MIGHTY JUKE
Top 100 CD's list
for the last 9 months in Real Blues Magazine
Mr. B.B. King said
of Malkum "This guy is marvelous. He has a rare talent".
good shuffles.. good harp tone.. vocals have a lot of
personality…the whole band plays with a lot of verve and good
energy..” Bruce Iglauer Alligator Records and Artist Management
sounds unique…across between Jr. Wells, James Cotton and Snooky
Pryer…with Sonny Terry melodic passages. Malkum blows his face
off.” Andy Grigg Editor, Real Blues Magazine
Booking by -
Winter Blues Tour
Say goodbye to the winter blues & hello
to your weekend adventure in the Blues Capital of the world!
3 nights hotel accommodation at the Hilton
Palmer House Hotel - a Four Star hotel
Friday Night - transportation and admission to two
fabulous blues clubs - dinner & entertainment included (Kingston Mines &
Saturday Afternoon - 2 hour Gangster Tour
- See where Capone & Dillinger had their adventures in the 20's and 30's!
Saturday Night - on your own to shop the Magnificent Mile (just steps from
your hotel) or get recommendations for dinner & blues music that night from
your Tour Director
Monday Morning - Farewell breakfast - say goodbye and
exchange contact info with your new friends!
is going to be a fantastic trip at a great price! Singles welcome! Couples
welcome! It's a great Christmas present to yourself or someone else. We'll do
our best to find you a room share if you need one. Space is limited so check out
the details and get signed up for a fabulous weekend of blues & fun, Chicago
Chi-Town is one of the most architecturally interesting cities you have ever
seen. The people are friendly and it's very easy to get around. Take the "L"
from either Midway or O'Hare to your hotel, it's quick and easy! We provide all
the details and the fun. Ya'll come and enjoy! For more
information, visit our website at
Sign up today!
Call Leslie at 512-627-4790 or email
"Tear Chicago Down"
"Best Contemporary Blues CD"
by the Blues Foundation
Our CD's - "HooDoo Blues" & "Its Gonna Be Alright
Oh Whata' Records
January 18-21, 2008
"From the opening chords and boogie beat of the first track you know you’re in for some deep blues!" - IllinoisBlues.com
To purchase this CD now CLICK HERE or visit your favorite local music shop and support music in your neighborhood.
(To read the full review of this CD CLICK HERE.)
MALKUM GIBSON and THE MIGHTY JUKE
Top 100 CD's list for the last 9 months in Real Blues Magazine
Mr. B.B. King said of Malkum "This guy is marvelous. He has a rare talent".
“solid blues.. good shuffles.. good harp tone.. vocals have a lot of personality…the whole band plays with a lot of verve and good energy..” Bruce Iglauer Alligator Records and Artist Management
“Malkum’s harp sounds unique…across between Jr. Wells, James Cotton and Snooky Pryer…with Sonny Terry melodic passages. Malkum blows his face off.” Andy Grigg Editor, Real Blues Magazine
Booking by -
Winter Blues Tour
Say goodbye to the winter blues & hello to your weekend adventure in the Blues Capital of the world!
3 nights hotel accommodation at the Hilton Palmer House Hotel - a Four Star hotel www.palmerhouse.hilton.com
Friday Night - transportation and admission to two fabulous blues clubs - dinner & entertainment included (Kingston Mines & Rosa's) http://www.kingstonmines.com/flash/main.html
Saturday Afternoon - 2 hour Gangster Tour - See where Capone & Dillinger had their adventures in the 20's and 30's!
Saturday Night - on your own to shop the Magnificent Mile (just steps from your hotel) or get recommendations for dinner & blues music that night from your Tour Director
Monday Morning - Farewell breakfast - say goodbye and exchange contact info with your new friends!
Cost:Only $475.00 per person!
This is going to be a fantastic trip at a great price! Singles welcome! Couples welcome! It's a great Christmas present to yourself or someone else. We'll do our best to find you a room share if you need one. Space is limited so check out the details and get signed up for a fabulous weekend of blues & fun, Chicago style!
Chi-Town is one of the most architecturally interesting cities you have ever seen. The people are friendly and it's very easy to get around. Take the "L" from either Midway or O'Hare to your hotel, it's quick and easy! We provide all the details and the fun. Ya'll come and enjoy! For more information, visit our website at: www.bluesadventures.com
Sign up today! Call Leslie at 512-627-4790 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
3303 Brady St. Davenport, Iowa * MAP * (563) 324-4619
Friday, January 11 5:00 p.m. Jack Wessels Band 9:00 p.m. Creekside Allstars
Sunday, January 13 7:00 p.m. Steady Rolling Blues Band
No Cover Charge!
Blues Society News
Reno Blues Society - Reno, NV
Mardi Gras 2008 - Mardi Gras will be celebrated
on Feb 2nd, 2008 at the Holiday Inn on 6th St from 7-12. Doors open at 7, music
starts at 7:30 with Blue Haven. The headliner is Mark St. Mary Blues & Zydeco
Band. They will play 2 sets beginning at 9. Tix are $15.00 in advance $20.00 at
the door. Costume party as always.
The Long Island Blues Society - E. Setauket NY
Off To Memphis Party - Sunday, January 13, 2008
Buchmann's Radio Grille, 197 Terry Road, Smithtown NY. Help us send off JP
Blues and Steve Robinson to Memphis for the 2008 IBC Competition. Donation is
$10.00. Start time 2PM...Line up to include: Out Of The Blue, C & B Blues Revue,
Steve Robinson, Sam Taylor Band, Pamela Betti & Dirty Love, JP Blues
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
Jan 14 - Delta Highway from Memphis
Jan 21 - Bill Lupkin & the Chicago Blues Coalition w/ Barrel House Chuck
The River City Blues Society - Peoria. IL
RCBS is first meeting of 2008 is scheduled for 7:00pm Thursday January 10th, 2008 at the Rhythm Kitchen on Water Street, Peoria, IL. The society will be electing new committee chairs and planning some great Blues activities for the New Year. Please attend as your input is essential for a successful 2008. For more information, please call 309 267-4425
Mississippi Valley Blues Society - Davenport, IA
Blues Guitarist Albert Cummings to Play on Wednesday January 16
The Mississippi Valley Blues Society presents guitarist Albert Cummings and his band on Wednesday January 16 at the Isle of Capri Showroom (formerly Penguins Comedy Club) in Bettendorf. The show begins at 7:30 p.m.; admission is $12.00, $10.00 for MVBS members. For more information, contact the Blues Society office at 563-32-BLUES.
The MVBS was eager to get Albert Cummings back to the Quad-Cities after his powerful performance at the 2007 IH Mississippi Valley BluesFest. By trade a carpenter known for constructing award-winning custom-built homes, Cummings is also a master guitarist influenced by Stevie Ray Vaughan. After sharing a bill with the late SRV’s rhythm section, Double Trouble, bassist Tommy Shannon and Drummer Chris Layton were so taken with Cummings’ fire and passion that they volunteered to play on and produce his debut recording, 2003’s From the Heart. Double Trouble again joined Cummings in 2004 for his debut on the Blind Pig label, True to Yourself, which showcases Cummings’ songwriting talent as well as his pyrotechnics on guitar. Working Man (Blind Pig), Cummings’ summer of 2006 blockbuster release, is the culmination of a guitar hero’s career just taking off. Cummings has toured with blues legends Buddy Guy, Johnny Winter, and B.B. King, who has called Cummings “a great guitarist.”
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