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March 20, 2009           

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Hey Blues Fans,

We didn't have to go very far to find some great Blues this week.  There was some great stuff right in our own backyard. Kilborn Alley Blues Band paid tribute to St Paddy's Day Tuesday with a show at Paddy O' Flaherty's in Morton, IL. They are back touring after wrapping up the recording of a new CD for Blue Bella records. They treated a huge crowd of Irish revelers to a few of the new songs from the recording. As with their first two releases, this one is chock full of real original Chicago Blues songs that have you clapping and singing along the first time you hear them. Look for the new CD in May


Bluesman Chris Bell played to a crowd of Blues lovers from the River City Blues Society in Pekin, IL. Chris hails from Los Angeles, CA and they don't call him "Chris Bell and 100% Blues" for nothing. He played two sets of real deal Blues that had the crowd yelling for more.


In this issue - Blues Reviews and MORE!

James Walker reviews a new CD from Too Slim and the Taildraggers. Ben Cox reviews a new CD by a Chicago Blues All Star team that includes Billy Boy Arnold, John Primer, Billy Branch, Lurrie Bell, Carlos Johnson and others.

Our video of the week is a classic clip of John Lee Hooker with the Rolling Stones and Eric Clapton.  All this and MORE! SCROLL DOWN!!!

For tickets and info CLICK HERE

 Blues Society News

 Send your Blues Society's BIG news or Press Release to:  

Please submit a maximum of 175 words or less in a Text or Word format ONLY.

Arkansas River Blues Society - Little Rock, AR

The Arkansas River Blues Society has settled in to its home base at Jazzi's, 5200 Asher Ave. in Little Rock. The jam is held on the 1st Wed. of each month. A different house band is featured each month and on April 1st it will be Jess Hoggard and Southern Soul featuring Charles Wood. The May house band is Unseen Eye from Hot Springs. Recent house bands have been Joe Marks and NTO, Joe Pitts Band, Mike Dollins and the Cruise Bros., Big John Miller Band, N-2 Blues, and John Craig. Regular jammers have been Dan Sokoloski, Jawbone and Jolene, Charlotte Taylor, Ed Bowman, Charles Wood, and G-Funk the Tree Trunk. Joe Pitts brought in a touring band from Italy called Shanghai Noodle Factory. Jam begins at 8:30 and runs till midnight. People are friendly and the food is good. You can find out about special events by visiting the MySpace page at

Mississippi Valley Blues Society - Davenport, IA

The Mississippi Valley Blues Society presents Bob Dorr and the Blue Band at the Redstone Room Saturday March 28 Davenport, IA ( 129 Main Street). Doors open at 7:30 and the music begins at 8:30 Admission is $10. The show is a fundraiser for the MVBS. For more information Contact: Karen McFarland, (563) 508-6596

Illinois Central Blues Club - Springfield, IL


Held at the Alamo 115 N 5th St, Springfield, IL (217) 523-1455 every Monday 8:30pm $2 cover - March 23 - Chris Bell and 100% Blues, Mar 30 - Frank Herrin & Blues Power, Apr 6 - Blues Deacons, Apr 13 - Too Slim & the Taildraggers, Apr 20 - Pleasure Chest, Apr 27 - Nothin' But Trouble

River City Blues Society- Peoria, IL

The River City Blues Society's Wednesday Blues Series in Central, Illinois are early shows each Wednesday at 7:00pm, featuring the best traveling regional and National Blues musicians. The shows feature a budget priced cover charge of $3. The shows are held at the Dragon's Dome, 3401 Griffin Ave in Pekin, IL.

Shows scheduled are:  Mar 25 - Sally Weisenburg & The Famous Sidemen, Apr 1 - Reverend Raven & The Chain Smoking Alter Boys, Apr 8 - Third Degree Blues Band, Apr 15 - Too Slim & The Tail Draggers, Apr 22 - Damon Fowler Group, April 29 - Bob Dorr & The Blue Band, May 6 Shannon Curfman, May 13 - Scott Ellison, May 20 - Deak Harp, May 27 - The Insomniacs

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Blues Blast Magazine is a great way to promote the Blues. More than 12,000 Blues fans, Blues society members, festival promoters, record companies, artists and Blues publishers read our Blues Blast magazine each week. They are located in all 50 states and in more than 60 countries. We get more than 800,000 hits and more than 10,000 visitors a month on our website.

If your Blues Society is organizing a Blues Fest we offer cost effective advertising that really "Gets The Blues Word Out"! If you are a Blues performer, we can help promote your new CD. We know times are hard and Blues music is the Music for the times! So for a limited time Blues Blast Magazine is offering  "recession prices" on festival and CD advertising.

Normal 2009 Advertising rates are $30 a week for Blues Blast magazine ads. Website ads are $40 per month for a small ads on the sidebar of the homepage and $55 per month for a larger ad on the main homepage area.

BUT, for a limited time, you can advertise your Blues event or CD in Blues Blast Magazine for less that the cost of a small ad in your local newspaper.  If you reserve and pay for your ad space by March 31st, 2009 we are offering a special combo rate of $100 a month to get both a weekly Blues Blast magazine ad AND a sidebar ad on our website (Minimum of 2 months).

SO for $200 your ad will run in eight issues of the Blues Blast and be on the website for 2 months. Your ad will be seen by THOUSANDS of Blues fans!

Ads can be scheduled for any dates in 2009. Space is limited during some summer festival season times and will be sold on a first come first served basis. To get more information email

 Featured Blues Review 1 of 2

Too Slim and the Taildraggers - Free Your Mind

Underworld Records

11 songs; Time 52:01; Library Quality   Style: American Roots Music

“When will I EVER learn to keep my big, fat mouth SHUT? Yep, I told the straight, harsh truth. And, I won the battle, ....... but I lost the war!” These words are spoken, at some point, by everyone who is in a successful long term relationship – of any variety: lovers, spouses, bosses, workmates, children, band mates. Most everyone knows this concept. But, how many can create lyrics and music to express it in a great song?

That is where half of the genius of Tim “Too Slim” Langford comes in. “Bottle It Up” is the title that succinctly (and politely) summarizes that “just shut up” idea. The lyrics (thoughtfully included in the CDs nicely presented package) read, “You make me just want to yell and scream / The world you live in is a fantasy / Someday I hope that you will wake up from your dream / And join us in reality.” Implication: the offender needs a good telling off, but we know who will get “burned” in the end.

The other half of Langford’s genius is setting those lyrics to music led by his legendary guitar work. Across Langford’s career, imaginative guitar playing and distinctive tones on electric guitar, slide, and acoustic stake his claim as a master guitarist currently with rising recognition. On first listen to “Bottle It Up,” I told Too Slim, “I hear Beatles tones in there.” In an interview, Slim revealed, “The guitar playing is George Harrison slide style all the way. It’s “All Things must Pass” era - one of my favorite albums of all time.”

“Free Your Mind” is Too Slim and the Taildraggers’ 10th studio album since 1988. Its eleven original songs are a slice of American roots music, with influences from Blues, Americana and Rock. By 2003’s “Tales of Sin and Redemption,” Too Slim and his changing rhythm section, The Taildraggers, have truly created an eclectic style that has become a genre all its own allowing them to easily cross-over and appeal to audiences of various musical tastes.

For this outing, Too Slim sang lead and played Les Paul Supreme, Reverend, and Stratocaster guitars, the bass was handled by Dave Nordstrom, Rudy Simone drummed, background vocalists were Pamela and Paula Mattioli, and co-producer Todd Smallwood added Hammond organ and 12-string guitar on the recording, too.

For the fist time ever on a Too Slim album, another singer did lead vocals: Lauren Evans sang the last cut, a personal “prayer of sorts,” titled “The Light.” Slim revealed, “I had to let Lauren sing this one. I had written it way before I met her, and when I heard her voice, I just knew this song belonged to her. She has a gospel background, and she takes it to the church! [Call it] divine intervention.”

The CD's first track, "When You Love Somebody," launches off the pad by marrying the heartland rock of John Cougar Mellencamp with the southern rock influences of Lynyrd Skynyrd for a kick-ass opening. It is actually a love song; a “love song to my sweet [wife] Nancy,” Slim shared. I have known Tim Langford for 14 years, and I can testify that despite all the “takers” he has unfortunately met, he manages to keep love in his heart.

Opening with some deft single string picking, “Last Train” was written, after [Slim] read the Seattle Times one day. “All the lyrics are from subjects of different articles that day, and there was some crazy sh*t!” he explained. Slim compares society’s unreasonable excesses as the “last train, with cracks in the wheels” about to jump the tracks, and “Hunter S. Thompson is the engineer!”

With Southern Rock soaring guitars, “Devil in a Doublewide” is Too Slim’s take on the sad meth epidemic.

The guitar hooks and slide on the title track “Free Your Mind” are as catchy as cats on mice. “Everybody can relate to that time when you did not have a care in the world (“life is better when you don't have a care!”). Sometimes you got to reach back and hold on to that memory and re-inject it into your life as it is today,” says Langford. “Pour yourself a cold one” and “try everything before you get old.”

“Testament” testifies to Langford’s maturing as both a man and songwriter. Over layers of haunting guitars, Slim shared, “It’s a prayer of sorts. I wrote this whole song in about half an hour! Divine intervention!” Some of the influence seems to have come from the extremely harsh winter Seattle had this year.

Slim plays some of his patent killer slide guitar mid-song on a tune about perseverance, “Been Through Hell” - to get a little heaven.” Slim’s philosophy here, “Sometimes you got to go through some sh*t to get to the good stuff. Keep your head up and don't take things for granted.”

More maturity is found in “Peace with the Maker,” Slim’s take on the crossroads and making a deal with the Devil. Scolding guitar encourages responsibility for actions taken, and the chorus reminds one to make “peace with the Maker.”

“Throw Me a Rope” – “This is a song about wondering who your real friends are. Nobody knows you when you are down and out, right? If you could rescue me, would you try?” Some of the best uplifting guitar is found here in the middle solo.

Both humor and pathos are found in “This Phone.” A “lovesick and lonesome” man continually “stares at This Phone,” thinking that if he stares “long enough, it just might ring.” “I wrote this song a long time ago when I was courting my sweet wife Nancy. Cell phone service was not as good back then!” said Slim.

There may be a time to keep you mouth shut, but concerning “Free Your Mind,” this is not the time. Say it loudly, say it proudly, Too Slim and the Taildraggers rock!

Reviewer James “Skyy Dobro” Walker is a noted Blues writer, DJ and Blues Blast contributor. His weekly radio show “Friends of the Blues” can be heard each Thursday from 4:30 – 6:00pm on WKCC 91.1 FM in Kankakee, IL
To See James “Skyy Dobro” Walker's CD rating system, CLICK HERE

For other reviews and interviews on our website CLICK HERE.

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Its "MOJO MADNESS" At WGLT In Normal, Illinois The Whole Month Of March !!! 89.1 & 103.5, And On The Web At  Just Click On "Listen"

Listen to GLT Blues every weekend in March for MOJO MADNESS! It's your chance to win tickets to the Illinois Blues Festival in Peoria on Labor Day weekend as you call GLT to vote for your favorite blues artists. Here's the deal:

We've seeded and bracketed 32 great blues artists from yesterday and today for a blues tournament we're calling "MOJO MADNESS." MOJO MADNESS is just like the NCAA Basketball tournament every March, except YOU decide the winner of each round with your phone votes. If you're the 89th voter in a particular match, you'll win concert tickets. You may call to vote as often as you like, but you can only win once during the tournament. Every person who wins concert tickets by being the 89th voter qualifies for the Grand Prize: A Black Cat Bone ... that is, an iPod with songs from all 32 artists who made it into the 2009 MOJO MADNESS bracket.

Look at and download your own MOJO MADNESS bracket so you can keep track of the winners, as well as the date and times of each MOJO MADNESS match. Here's the link to the bracket:

The first "match' this week is Friday night from 8pm - 9pm, featuring Koko Taylor vs Willie Kent. Listen Live and phone in your votes at 309 438-8910 Here are the matchups for this weekend:

  • Fri March 20 (8:00pm) Koko Taylor vs Willie Kent 

  • Sat March 21 (1:00pm) BB King vs. Bo Diddley

  • Sat March 21 (4:00pm) Big Momma Thorton vs Howlin' Wolf

  • Sat March 21 (7:00pm) Buddy Guy vs Freddie King

  • Sat March 21 (9:00pm) Pinetop Perkins vs Stevie Ray Vaughan

  • Sun March 22 (9:00pm) Muddy Waters vs Luther Allison

  • Sun March 22 (1:00pm) Eric Clapton vs Etta James

Week Two Winners

  • Albert Collins vs Katie Webster = Albert Collins

  • Big Momma Thorton vs Big James = Big Momma Thorton

  • Howlin Wolf vs Johnny Winter = Howlin' Wolf

  • Pinetop Perkins vs Otis Rush = Pinetop Perkins

  • Stevie Ray Vaughan vs Big Time Sarah = Stevie Ray Vaughan

  • Eric Clapton vs Elmore James = Eric Clapton

  • Etta James vs Bryan Lee = Etta James

  • Albert King vs Roomful of Blues = Albert King

Week One Winners

  • BB King vs. Little Walter = BB King

  • Bo Diddley vs. Tab Benoit = Bo Diddley

  • Muddy Waters vs. Marcia Ball = Muddy Waters

  • Ray Charles vs. Luther Allison = Luther Allison

  • Buddy Guy vs. Sue Foley = Buddy Guy

  • Freddie King vs. Magic Slim = Freddie King

  • John Lee Hooker vs. Nick Moss = John Lee Hooker

For more info, go to  To tune in to GLT Blues Radio 24/7 and Play MOJO MADNESS simply CLICK HERE

 Blues Video of the Week

John Lee Hooker

with the Rolling Stones and Eric Clapton

This week we feature a video from a 1989 show in Atlantic City. The song is the Hooker classic, "Boogie Chillin".

This is a classic clip from the zenith of John Lee's career.

Eric Clapton and and the Stones know they are with the master. They are all smiles to be in his presence and play on the same stage with him.

To see this cool video on our website, click the play button below.


For other videos on our website CLICK HERE.

The Simply The Blues Festival May 8th and 9th 2009 in Fort Madison, IA.

May 8th -Bobby Rush, Sugar Blue, porterdavis, Patrick Hazell and the The Smokin Mojo Kings.

May 9th - Johnny Drummer, Liz Mandeville, Michael Frank, Chris James and Patrick Rynn, Bob Corritore, Harper, The Soul Of John Black, Shannon Curfman, 2009 International Blues Challenge band winner JP Soars And The Red Hots, IBC solo/duet winner Little Joe McLerran, Rich Berry, The Avey Brothers and Brad McCloud and the Case of the Blues. For more information go to

 Featured Blues Review 2 of 2

Various Artists

Chicago Blues: A Living History

Raisin’ Music

Run Time: Disc I (34:44) Disc 2 (40:05)

U.S. Release Date April 21, 2009

Billy Boy Arnold, John Primer, Billy Branch, Lurrie Bell, Carlos Johnson, Billy Flynn, Johnny Iguana, Kenny “Beedy Eyes” Smith, and Mike Avery. It reads like the roster to a Chicago Blues All Star team. Well, that’s what you get in this jam-packed, exquisite package of a retrospective of the Windy City’s rich blues history and tradition when placed in the hands of its deepest contemporary translators. These guys are some of the top dogs in the Chicago Blues and its undeniable when these guys take on twenty-one nuggets of the tradition’s long list of great songs.

From Sonny Boy Williamson I’s “My Little Machine” in 1940 to Buddy Guy’s “Damn Right I Got the Blues” in 1991, this set covers fifty years of some of the greatest and most identifiable blues artists that have ever struck a note in the Windy City. Held in a lavish, picture laden digipak and accompanied with a booklet that gives a nice overview of each artists covered and each living artist covering the music; this has undeniably jumped to the forefront of one of my favorite packages in the last five years.

Billy Boy Arnold does a return to John Lee “Sonny Boy” Williamson on “My Little Machine.” Billy Boy’s tribute last year on Electro-Fi was a superb tribute and this is yet another dead-on performance by the Chicago native. Lurrie Bell and Carlos Johnson give an explosive and very truthful reading of Buddy Guy’s “Damn Right I Got the Blues.” John Primer has never sounded better on “Sugar Sweet.” Lurrie Bell also turns in a rugged Elmore James cover of “I Believe.” It’s just one slam dunk after another.

If this album doesn’t get nominated for some kind of award or get some special recognition and if everyone out there doesn’t buy this album, well there’s something wrong. I was completely blown away. This is a one of a kind tribute album that delivers both the emotional punch and fervor of the originals. Chicago blues is living and continues to in the hands of the greats such as these.

Reviewed by Ben "the Harpman" Cox. Visit his website Juke Joint Soul

For other reviews and interviews on our website CLICK HERE.

The River City Blues Society presents

Wednesday Blues featuring

Sally Weisenburg

7:00pm March 18th, 2009

The Dragon's Dome
3401 Griffin Ave, Pekin, IL.

To see Map- CLICK HERE

 Admission $3 - One free admission with new Society membership



Live Blues Calendar

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Performance dates were submitted by Musicians, Club Owners, Blues Societies and Blues festivals. is not responsible for errors or omissions.

CLICK HERE - for the Latest Complete Blues Calendar on our website at:

or click a state to see Blues shows by State

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