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newsletters

1st Annual Riverbend Blues Festival 2 Jul 2011

Jim Suhler and Monkeybeat @ Wilebski's 1 July 2011

Sam Lay Reflections (Audio)

Gooseberry Falls

Hambone Festival 17-18 Jun 2011

Chicago Blues Fest 2011 Before and After

Smok'n in Steele  - Owatonna Mn 4 June 2011

Charlie West Blues Festival 20-21 May 2011 /Rory Gallagher Tribute NY City

Guitar Shorty Tour/ BMA 2011/ Clarksdale Caravan

Robert Johnsons 100 years Crossroads @ Orchestra Hall

2011 IBC Memphis  Photos, Interviews- Audio and Video

Many MORE pix 2010

13th  Annual Prairie Dog Festival 30-31 July 2010

Liz Mandeville @ House Party in Wisc w/Brothers Curtis

Joe Kubeck and Benois King @ Famous Daves 23 July 2010

Greater Twin Cities Blues Music Society Potluck 18 July 2010

Sioux Falls Jazz Fest 2010 16-17 July 2010

Thunder Bay Blues Fest 2010 Day 3 ....11 July 2010

Thunder Bay Blues Fest 2010 Day 2 ....10 July 2010

Thunder Bay Blues Fest 2010 Day 1 ....9 July 2010

4th of July @ Curtis marlatt's annual party

Best Blues singer of upper midwest competition @ Taste of Minnesota

Wilebski Blues Saloon 1st Annual Freedom Fest 3July 2010

Dave Riley and Bob Corritore 2 July 2010 @ Wilebski Blues Saloon

John Lee Hooker Jr @ Wilebski Blues Saloon 23 June 2010

Ron Thompson @ Wilebski Blues Saloon 24 and 25 June 2010

Steve "Boom Boom" @ Wilebski Blues Saloon June 2010

Hambone Festival in Rochester MN June 2010

Guitar Shorty Midwest Tour June 2010

Pipeband Competition @ Farmington , Mn Fairgrounds May 2010

Miki's Heart Benefit @ Gara's Garage St Paul June 2010

Liz Mandeville@ Wilebski Blues Saloon 22 May 2010

Bluegrass Fest Mn Homegrown Kickoff June 2010

Little Ed @ Famous Daves May 2010

Motown Review @ Wilebski's 14 May 2010

Bobby Rush @ Wilebski's 15 May 2010

2010 Blues Music Awards and CatHead Mini Fest /Clarksdale Caravan

Juke Joint Fest 2010 in Clarksdale w/Honey Boy- Robin Rogers

Curtis Blake and Greazy Gravy @ Wilebski Blues Saloon

Hambone Fund raiser in Albert Lea

Kent Burnside @ Palmers 10 April 2010

Willy Murphy @ Wilebskis Blues Saloon Monday Night Blues

Nora Jean @ Wilebski Blues Saloon 2 Apr 2010

John Primer @ Wilebski Blues Saloon 10 Apr 2010

Walter Trout @ Famous Dave 9 Apr 2010

Nora Jean @ MMC 4 Apr 2010 1st set of pix

Nora Jean @ MMC 4 Apr 2010 2nd set of pix

The Rock 19 Mar 2010 Battle of the bands

Super Chikan @ Palmers(West Bank) 16 Mar 2010

John Mooney@ Wilebski Blues Saloon 12 Mar 2010

Hye Pockets Benefit @ Famous Daves 28 Feb @ 2010

Jimmy Dawkins @ Wilebski's Blues Saloon 27 Feb 2010

Central Iowa Winter Blues Fest 2010 @ Marriott DT Des Moines

IBC 2010 The Ride

Syl Johnson @Wilebski's Blues Saloon 19 Feb 2010

Fargo Winter Blues Fest 2010 @ Playmakers 13 Feb 2010

HUD @ Washington Square White bear Lake

Eddie Shaw and The Wolfgang @ Wilebski's Blues Saloon 12 Feb 2010

Jim Suhler and Monkey Beat @ Wilebski's Blues Saloon 15 Jan 2010

Going Out Of Town Fundraiser for Brandon Scott Sellner Band

Little Ed and The Imperials on 14 Nov 2009 @ Famous Daves

Mojo Buford’s Surprise 80th Birthday Party on Sunday, November 8, 2009 @ Dean’s Tavern

Shannon Curfman and Tinsley Ellis Halloween 2009 @ Famous Daves

Tour of Guitar Shorty Memphis, Clarksdale, Oklahoma, Nebraska, Minneapolis

Eclipse Bar in Raytown, MO with Trampled Under Foot and special guest Hubert (Guitar Shorty)

Jimmy Carpenter and Friends  @ Old Point Bar in Algiers, LA

Kamp Katrina

Rebirth Brass Band @ Lafayette Square on 15 Oct 2009

Upper 9th Ward PIX(Check out videos at bottom of this page)

             Walter "Wolfman" Washington and Jimmy Carpenter @ DBA on                          Frenchmen St. in New Orleans Wed 14 Oct 2009

Kamp Katrina Now /Lowwer 9th WardPIX(Check out videos at bottom of this page)

West Bank Mike and Jimmy Carpenter @ Old Point Bar in Algiers, Louisiana on 13 Oct 09

Voice of the Wetlands Festival  in Houma La. @ Southdown Plantation on Sun 11 Oct 2009

Voice of the Wetlands Festival  in Houma La. @ Southdown Plantation on Sat 10 Oct 2009

 Redds/ Pre-Biscuit @ GZBC/ King Biscuit 8-9 Oct 2009/ After Hours

Hambone Jam  6 Oct  2009

Little Bobby and Cotton 6 Oct 2009

Sun night @ Club Ebony in Indianola on 4 Oct 2009

Sat night@ Ground Zero on 3 Oct 2009

Autumn and Blues Festival @ 930 Blues Club Jackson, MS 0n 2 Oct 2009

Little Bobby @ Redds and GZBC on 1 Oct 2009

Mark Massey and then LaLa's Birthday Bash @ Ground Zero Clarksdale on 30 Sep 09

Harmonica Blowout @ Whiskey Junction on 27 Sep 2009

1st Annual Cycle Path Blues Festival @ Millville, MN on 26 Sep 2009

Paulie T's 60th Birthday Bash @ MN Music Cafe on 20 Sep 2009

TreeFrog Festival 2009 @ Faribault MN. on 19 Sep 2009

Boom Boom Steve V & The Knockouts CD release @ AppleWood Burnsville 18 Sep 2009

Bryan Lee @ Shaws Bar and Grill 17 Sep 2009

Shaws  Bar and Grill 911 Festival on 11 Sep 2009

Living History Blues @ West Des Moines on 5-6 Sep 2009

Rochester Blues and BBQ @ Peace Plaza on 22 Aug 2009

After Hours @ Big Bull Falls Blues Festival Wausau Day 2 on 15 Aug 2009

Day 2 @ Big Bull Falls Blues Festival Wausau on 15 Aug 2009

Day 1 @ Big Bull Falls Blues Festival Wausau on 14 Aug 2009

BayFront Blues festival Day3... 9Aug 2009

BayFront Blues festival Day 2... 8 Aug 2009

BayFront Blues festival Day 1... 7 Aug 2009

Guitar Shorty @ BluesMore Mansion   July 2009

Guitar Shorty @ Blues On Grand  July 2009

Hamilton Loomis @ Famous Daves July 2009

Little Brian and Zydeco Travelers@ Blues on Grand //Rib America 2009 Des Moines

Greater Twin Cities Blues Music Society Picnic  12 July 2009

Bicycle, Blues and BBQ @ Clear Lake, Iowa 11 July 2009

Little Bobby @ Famous Daves 9 July 2009

Thunder Bay Blues Festival @ Thunder Bay Ontario 3 and 4 July 2009

THUNDERBAY 2009 REVIEW BELOW

Thunder Bay Blues Festival @ Thunder Bay Ontario 5 July 2009

The Hambone Blues Festival @ Hayward Minn 26-27 June 2009

Big Walter Smith @ Central Park in Roseville, Mn June 2009

Allen Toussaint @ St Paul Jazz Fest 19 Jun 2009

Santiago Upper Mississippi Shakedown 2009

Famous Daves BBQ and Blues 13 June 2009

Gladstone Blues Fest Gladstone Mizz June 2009

Smok'n in Steele Owatonna, Mn May 2009

RockFest Maximized 50th BD Party May 2009

Damon Fowler and Brat Fest Madison May 2009

Memphis in May, Clarksdale, New Orleans May 2009

Brandon Scott Sellner @ Famous Daves spring2009

Big Daddy 4 Play @Spasso's Minnetonka, Mn 14Mar 2009

Big Daddy 4 Play @Redstone Minnetonka, Mn 12-13Mar 2009

Big Daddy 4 Play W/ Shalo Lee @ Redstone 6 Mar 2009

The SwampKings on St Patty's Day 2009

Big Daddy 4 Play @ Redstone 5 Mar 2009 

Big Daddy 4 Play @ Spassos on various nights

Davina and The Vagabonds @ Dakota Steak in Burnsville Feb 2009

Big Daddy 4 Play @ Baggans on various nights Feb 2009 

                                   IBC kickoff @Ground Zero Blues Club (Clarksdale) /                                    International Blues Challenge 2009 on Beale Street

Hamilton Loomis @ Famous Daves 30 Jan 2009

Big Daddys BBQ and Blues @ Baggans Grand Opening  28 Jan 2009

Big Daddy 4 Play @ Centerfields Tuesday Blues 27 Jan 2009

Road to Memphis fund raiser @ Whiskey Junction 25 Jan 2009

1st Annual St Paul Winter Carnival @ Roy Wilkens 23 Jan  2009

Davina and The Vagabonds road to Memphis @ Jitters 18 Jan 2009

Big daddy 4 Play @ Spasso's Minnetonka, MN 15 Jan 2009

 Brandon Scott Sellner @ Famous Daves w/Big Daddy New Years Day 2009

Little Ed @ Famous Daves on New Years Eve 08-09 W/ special guests Big Daddy Cade

Corey Stevens and Paulie T @ Famous Daves 19 Dec 2008

Big Daddy @ Piggy's in LaCrosse Wi. 12 Dec 2008

Bev's Jook Joint Annual 2008 Christmas party 6 Dec 2008

Big Daddy @ Famous Daves Tom Petty Tribute 5 Dec 2008

Smok'n Joe & Bnois King @ Famous Daves 15 Nov 2008

Nick Moss @ Famous Daves 14 Nov 2008

Tinsley Ellis @ Famous Daves 8 Nov 2008

Chubby Carrier @ Famous Daves 25 Oct 2008

Blues Harp BlowOut @ Cabooze    21 Oct 2008 W/Kim Wilson

Greater Twin Cities Blues Music Society Hall of Fame awards

Joe Moss @ Famous Daves 17 Oct 2008

Shackup Inn/ Redds/ Ground Zero Blues 7-10 Oct 2008

Arkansas Blues and Heritage Festival 9 Oct 2008 ONLY

Voice of  the Wetlands Festival 10-12 Oct 2008

Tab Benoit @ Cabooze Sep 2008

The Road To Memphis 2008

Garden of the Gods @ Colorado Springs, Colorado  7 Sep 2008

Ron Thompson & His Resistors @ Belvedere Blues  2008  

Ron Thompson @ Outlook Hotel Boulder, CO 5Sept2008

Tommy Castro Band @ Murphy's Lounge Omaha, NE 4 Sep 2008

Friends of New Orleans Benefit @ 1st Ave  Minneapolis /Republican Convention Monday 1 Sep  2008

Friends of New Orleans @ 1st Ave Minneapolis / Republican Convention Sunday 31 August 2008

Hamilton Loomis @ Famous Daves 2008

Ron Thompson@Famous Daves // 7 Clans 2008

Fargo Blues Festival 2008

Bayfront Blues Festival 2008

Michael Burks @ Famous Daves 31 July 2008

E Smithson @  Bloomington Parks 31 July 2008

Big Walter smith@ Bloomington Parks 31 July 2008

Bamfest Music Festival 2008... Day 2

Bamfest Music Festival 2008... Day 1

Hambone Jam 2008

ThunderBay Blues Festival 2008

Prairie Dog Festival 2008

Rib America...Des Moines 2008

 

Thunder Bay Blues Festival  3-5 July 2009

As seen and heard by Kay Rooney: Twin City Blues

 

   Thunder Bay; What a Festival. 8th Annual. Held on the shores of Lake Superior giving us a gentle breeze to cool off those hot and steamy blues. One of the cleanest, friendliest, and best planned events of the year. Organizers: Bob Halvorsen and Trevor Hurtig both deserve a shout out for the diversity of talent booked. Highlighting Canadian and local talents to play along side some of the best known blues artists like Los Lonely Boys, Robert Cray, and Ronnie Baker Brooks.

   We missed Friday's opener due to the incredible beauty of the North Shore which beckoned like a siren demanded you stop and drink in the beauty of that majestic body of water. Which meant we also missed Nashina proposing to her long time boyfriend on stage. Yes, he accepted. Nashina & the Hackers, The Chain, and Southern Comfort were chosen by popular vote from last March's Blues Showcase to be openers for the festival and get the music rolling.

   After Friday's opener, Rita Chiarelli took the stage. She's been called the "Goddess of Canadian Blues and is an accomplished singer/songwriter and a skilled musician with an arm full of awards to her credit. Whether she was growling or belting out the blues, she rocked us with her three octave raspy voice and in between entertained us with her stories. She knows how to wail and brought the crowd to their feet screaming for more.

   Another highly awarded Canadian from Halifax, Carson Downey brought a different style of powerhouse blues coming on loud and strong. Trading licks with his drummer and playing that fender in new found places such as his shoulder, belly, and...between his legs, finally ending playing with his feet.

   Ending Friday's music was none other than the "Crown Prince of Chicago Blues", Ronnie Baker Brooks. What a master, he came out swinging, interacting with the crowd and in no time everyone was shouting "the blues is all right!". Proving why he has such a devoted fan base with his outstanding vocals and sound qualities, clear and solid. Leaping off the stage and playing nose to nose with a delighted crowd he demonstrated why he is a phenomenal guitarist and singer/songwriter.

   Saturday was a gorgeous day and opening the show was Thunder Bay's own Chrissy Klauss of The Chain. With her strong vocals, she can sing your socks off. No wonder she's a favorite. They featured several songs off their new CD with Robbie Jordine on lead guitar and Chrissy belting them out.

   The only performer to have the  honor of returning to the festival every year is Big Walter Smith. He came out jazzed looking spiffy in a white suit, red hat and shoes and sporting a Canadian tie honoring his hosts and Canada Day. He mesmerized us all not only with some great blues standards and a groovin' horn section, but with his infectious smile and warm personality stating his love for Thunder Bay's people, great location, and fun festival. The show stopper was when they brought out a huge portrait cake and Chrissy returned to the stage to sing Happy 79th Birthday to Big Walter. After that the blues ruled. 

One of the hottest stars of the West Coast blues scene is Shane Dwight who brought his rockin' blues to town. Plays killer guitar, clean all the way through and with great control. He know how to honky tonk and boogie then bring it way down with the sexy slow blues. He's been compared to a young Tommy Castro so keep your eye on this guy as he collects new fans wherever he goes. Me included.

   What do you get when you combine some of the smoothest vocals, stellar harp playing and outstanding song writing? John Nemeth, of course, That voice has so much emotion on everything from retro-modern blues to rockabilly tunes. Add in some of the best harp blowing and you have a crowd pleasing show stopping performer who has been running away with all kinds of awards. Very charismatic and every song is a keeper.

   If you're liking your blues hot and steamy, you need Becky Barksdale to rock your world. She can belt out those blues barefoot while playing with such intensity going from soft crying bends to raunchy riffs that she's been compared to a female SRV. You've never heard I Just Want to Make Love to You until you've heard Becky's sensual version. Sounding slow, hard and sexy all at once, she puts her all into everything she does. Don't miss her if you get a chance to see her. She's unforgettable.

   Roy Rogers simply amazed the crowd with his slide guitar work. Known as one the leading slide guitarists in the world he plays these unique modified guitars that spit out all that incredible sound. He didn't waste any time getting his blues on with some great standards like Robert Johnson's Terrapin Blues and a Big Joe Williams song where we watched his fingers fly on that double neck guitar. On a lot of the songs it was just him playing, sounding rich and full. Great enthusiasm, in fact, he was so good, the crowd wouldn't let him stop...first encore of the festival!

   Davy Knowles followed with his brand of blues rock. Young, humble, and full of energy. Writes most of his music but played some bluesy rock standards from CCR and CSNY. He might be young but he's honed his craft; wicked playing and a voice suited to the blues. Loved his comment to the crowd about never having seen so many lawn chairs in his life. Bet it wont be the last time either.

   The headliner of the festival closed Saturday's show. Los Lonely Boys opened with some blistering guitar and sweet harmonizing vocals that only brothers can do. Playing tunes off Cottonfields and Crossroads, Sacred, and off their self titled CD they pulled out all the stops and gave an incredible show of Texican style blues. In step, forwards, backwards, running at each other. Even Jojo playing that bass on his back, then tossed it to a very surprised someone on the side of the stage. Both Henry and Jojo held their guitars high playing one handed then threw them into the air catching a new chord repeatedly all without missing a beat. Another time both brothers were playing on Henry's Fender. Four hands, one guitar = Dynamite. They ended with Heaven as their encore and every time you thought it was over, they'd break into another shuffle, stretching it out till the crowd was as exhausted as they were. Fantastic show.

   Sunday's opening act was another local favorite Southern Comfort fronted by Dave Johnson. Starting out with some slow blues then picking it up and rocking out. Followed by a little boogie and even a little gospel, it was Sunday morning after all. Good song list as we knew them all, each one a classic.

   At this point Davina and the Vagabonds were supposed to appear, but being held up at the border, The Chain came to the rescue and Chrissy Klauss delighted us once more with her outstanding vocals. Peter, usually on lead guitar, added some nice harp on When Lovin' Ain't Easy, then on to an outstanding emotional I'd Rather Go Blind, next a few of their own compositions and ending with Sunshine Girl.

   Since 2004, Cuba´s most sought after electric guitarist has been leading his own project: the Elmer Ferrer Band, known for their intense, energetic fusion of jazz, blues and rock, Cuban style and now Elmer has made Canada his home. The music was chimey, melodic, sounding like a soft summer breeze which fit the day perfectly. Great control on that guitar and a tight band backing him. From dreamy to funky to Hendrix, wow! Highlighting some tunes off his new CD, No Guitars Allowed, he amazed us with solid playing that was growly and very dimensional. A definite winner.

   Ricky Pacquette might be 18, but sings and plays way beyond his years and he proved it playing on a mess of guitars. Everything starting from a strat to vintage Gibson to a Flying Vee. He treated us to a lot of rock, which nobody minded, I think everybody knew a new guitar hero had arrived.

   Carlos Del Junco, another Cuban who's settled in Canada, has chosen the harmonica as his forte. He opened with a classic blues tune than went non-stop into a jazzy funky jam. He can make that harp sound like birds chirping and sound like a whole band playing when it's just him. Incredible sounds covering ska, polka, Italian wedding and of course the blues. Wrapping it up with a tune about Robert Johnson's untimely death he showed us how you get 12 notes out of a 10 note harmonica. 

   Finally, Davina and the Vagabonds arrived. Sporting her sassy "Nawlin's" style and unique voice it didn't take long to woo the crowd with her singing and piano playing to prove she was worth waiting for. She rolled those expressive eyes and melted hearts, how can anyone resist her? One of the highlights was with her campy and creative voice she matched licks with her horn section on Sneaky Dirty Devil. She not only ended her set with St. James Infirmary but ended with a whole new fan base.

   A nice follow up after Davina was Kenny Neal with his Louisiana background. He came out playing swamp blues on that well used Fender. Multi talented he switches it up to lap steel and throws in a good amount of harp. He can play them blues, slow, sexy, and sweet. Doing some Guitar Slim, Jimmy Reed, and finishing up with his own Let Life Flow which was named song of the year from the CD of the same name which was also named album of the year by Blueswax. I'm hooked, line and sinker. Give me more Kenny.

   Blues of another sort poured from the stage as Philip Sayce shared his style of high energy rock influenced blues. Blistering sweat soaked rifts, playing from one side of the stage to the other, sometimes using the speakers, his mouth, or playing sideways to coax more sound out of that well beat up strat. He's learned well from all he's played with (Jeff Healey, Milissa Etheridge, etc) picking up his own style of soaring notes. Jumping out into the crowd giving everyone a close up of what he does best. Back up on stage harmonizing nicely with his two band mates, Philip finished up with that guitar reaching notes like it's never been heard before.

   Robert Cray was the closing act and he didn't waste any time getting it going. Rich sound and great vocals. He entertained us with an assortment of his hits off Strong Persuader like Smoking Gun and Because Of Me, on to Poor Johnny and some off his new CD. Plucking it up with I Do All The Cooking, (no more chicken in his kitchen) and getting it down and funky. Everything he does is smooth, making it sound so easy. When he came back out for an encore, he didn't disappoint. No less than four songs before the crowd finally let him wrap up the 2009 festival.

 

I know that the powers that be are already working on next years line up, but believe me, it's going to hard to beat this years festival!

Kamp Katrina Videos

 

 



 








 








       
                                                                                      


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