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December 27, 2007           

© 2007

News, reviews, live Blues show links AND MUCH MORE at Bottom! - Scroll Down!

Hey Blues Fans,

It it officially Winter in the Central US and when cold winds blow our thoughts long for some hot live Blues music to warm us up a bit. is offering a January Chicago Winter Blues Tour that includes 3 nights at a 4 star hotel, some meals and admission and transportation to and from the hotel to the 3 Chicago Blues clubs on the tour. This looks like a great hotel and music package that culminates with reservations to see Buddy Guy himself at Chicago's Legends Blues Club on Sunday night. The tour dates are January 18th to January 21st, 2008.

We are pleased to welcome a new advertiser this week, Chicago Blues Tour.   Chicago Blues Tour also offers a great Chicago Blues tour package. They have a one day package for January 19th, 2008 that includes admission to seven Chicago Blues Clubs  plus a shuttle bus that runs between the seven Blues clubs making for easy safe transportation. (All different Blues Clubs from Winter Blues Tour). While the Chicago Blues Tour package includes no hotels and no meals, it is VERY reasonably priced . ($25 till January 5th and only $30 after that.)

These Blues tour dates overlap so what is a Blues person to do? This is a no brainer! Book BOTH OF THESE TOURS! As it turns out the tour has no specific activities scheduled for Saturday night so if you are already in Chicago you will want to hear some Blues on Saturday night and you can not beat the price of $25 to get admission and transportation to seven Chicago Blues clubs! Check out these tours in the Featured Advertiser section below.

New to the Blues Blast & CLICK HERE to go directly to the 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

While checking out some Blues links on Craig Hopkins website ( ), we came across a link to this impressive young man's website. In a couple months Tyler Dow Bryant will turn 17. As you know is always enthusiastic about young Blues talent.  Here we offer you another shining example that the future of this American art form called the Blues is very much alive. Keep an eye on this one! 

OK so what, another kid with a good website who plays Blues. Yea, BUT! This kid can sing and play guitar WAY beyond most folks of any age.  But it is not just US who sees how amazing this young man is.

At the age of 15, Tyler got his first endorsement with Ernie Ball/Music Man. In May of 2007, Tyler was awarded the Robert Johnson Blues Foundation's New Generation Award, naming him the most promising blues artist of 2007.  You can tell all this from his 2006 CD too. Check out three tunes from Tyler's CD "Born In Texas"  at his MySpace site .  Also to see a video of Tyler live CLICK HERE

For more Blues links  CLICK HERE to visit the Links Page

If you know of a COOL Blues link, please send it to


 Streaming Blues Link of the Week

Music Maker Relief Foundation, Inc. is a tax exempt, public charity under IRS code 501(c)3. Their mission is to help the true pioneers and forgotten heroes of Southern music gain recognition and meet their day to day needs. Their Board of Directors and Advisory Board includes some big Blues names such as  Taj Mahal, B.B. King, Bonnie Raitt, Jackson Browne, Dickey Betts, Derek Trucks, Susan Tedeschi, Sue Foley and Kenny Wayne Shepherd. The Music Maker Relief Foundation offers financial support with the following programs:

They have lots of great Blues music and videos on their website. Some great stuff here from obscure artists. To go right to their Blues media page and listen to some great Blues, CLICK HERE. Just click on one of the songs or videos and turn it up LOUD!

Don't forget to make a tax deductible donation to this great Blues organization while you are there listening. Tax time will be here before you know it and a donation to support the Blues can lower your tax bill and help others! How can you top that?

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 "new" CD by Ellis Hooks - Another Saturday Morning

Ellis Hooks
Another Saturday Morning

Evidence Music, Inc.

 By JamesSkyy Dobro” Walker
16 songs; 58:27 minutes; Recommended 

Out of the mouths of babes: “Dad, this album has a 1960s sound – that rocking Soul music.” That spot on assessment came from my 26-year-old daughter after hearing the first two songs. She has both thoughtfully and subconsciously listened all her young life to the music I have played. It is no coincidence the Stax and Muscle Shoals sound permeates many songs. Producer, writer, and player Jon Tiven produced and wrote the late Wilson Pickett's comeback album It's Harder Now (recipient of three W.C. Handy Awards and a Grammy nomination). Tiven knew what he had found in a chance meeting with Ellis Hooks January 2000.

Echoes of the Stax/Volt horn section are heard as the very first notes of both the first track “Black Dirt” and the second track, “You Move Too Fast.” Amazingly, that horn section is one man, Jon Tiven on alto and tenor saxophones. While Ellis Hooks is a polished guitar player and is pictured as such in the liner notes, he picks nary a note on this CD, his third for Evidence Music since 2003. All the emphasis is on Hooks’ sensual, gravelly tenor voice (witness Steve Marriott meets Otis Redding) while Tiven additionally handles guitar, sitar, Hammond organ, harmonica, and percussion. Tiven’s wife Sally plays bass with no less than seven guests on drums. Tiven’s production on these sixteen originals is studiously concise; not a wasted note. Do the arithmetic: sixteen songs in 58+ minutes means no song goes more than a few seconds past four minutes (several closer to three).

“I love almost all kinds of music. If it moves my soul, then it moves me!” says Ellis Hooks.   Ellis attributes his Soul style to his hometown roots, “I think that maybe comes from the church.”            The 13th child of an African-American Alabama sharecropper and his Cherokee bride, Hooks got kicked out of the Baptist choir in his preadolescent years when he discovered that Sam Cooke sang more than gospel. It was from there that he headed on his own into other territories like soul, blues, and rock.

Ellis Hooks sure got soul with songs like “Do I Ever Cross Your Heart.” His voice has a range that plunges up and down the scale, and packs an emotional punch that should make even the most stoical blues critics take notice.

You can hear authentic emotion on “Your River”, the title track, and bonus track “If I Give You My Heart For Christmas.” None of these originals are twelve-bar blues selections, but never mind. Blues feeling is intertwined into Ellis’ songs via his raw and heart felt vocals. For example, guys, relate to his passing-pubescence-leads-to-heartbreak-song “Churchyard Girl.”

Ellis Hooks’ bio reveals he has a Ph.D. from the school of hard knocks, but his tremendous efforts and musical support from the Tivens have all paid off in spades, again.

To hear some sample tracks or purchase this CD CLICK HERE for more information.

For other reviews and interviews on our website CLICK HERE. also features a CD review by Blues Songwriter, Musician, DJ and Journalist, Ben Cox.

Stevie Ray Vaughan
Solos, Sessions, & Encores

Legacy Recordings

Running Time: 69:48

Most SRV fans, Vaughanabes, and die hards will have heard most of these tracks either released or unreleased on this 14 track CD from the late virtuoso’s vault. If you bought the SRV box way back when, most of the stuff was included. However, for those who don’t quite yet have their Vaughan collection complete, this is a good start.

The first track is one of my favorites from Vaughan’s live recorded catalog “The Sky Is Crying” featuring other guitar giants B.B. King and Albert King along with harmonica legend Paul Butterfield. Vaughan plays some quiet fills along next to his teacher Albert King in the opening of the number, showing that the guitar legend knew when to be heard and seen and when not to.

The set unveils a long-time bootlegged 1978 session in Nashville with Vaughan’s then-girlfriend Lou Ann Barton, showing a bare bones style that would later mold into the SRV we all came to know in 1983. The track with Barton on vocals “You Can Have My Husband” is reminiscent of some of the chunk-a-lunk of Stevie’s brother Jimmie with the early portions of the Fabulous Thunderbirds.

Another great standout track (oft-bootlegged as well) stemming from the SRV-produced Strike Like Lightning album tour with Lonnie Mack is the diabetic-inducing “Oreo Cookie Blues” in which both teacher and student unleash an onslaught of some nasty guitar fretwork.

Another previously unreleased track from 1985’s Saturday Night Live appearance with brother Jimmie, “Change It” demonstrates how Vaughan had come full circle from a backing track on a 1983 David Bowie Top 40 hit (which makes its appearance in this compilation on the final track) to guitar iconoclast in the public eye by the time of his death in 1990.

Other mainstays of the Vaughan catalog that have oft been released by never in single disc form is the live with Jeff Beck “Goin Down,” “Pipeline” with Dick Dale, and “Don’t Stop By the Creek, Son” with Johnny Copeland.

Overall, as a historical disc, you can gather much more of Vaughan’s legacy on some previously released sets like the aforementioned box set released in 2000 or the Blues At Sunrise compilation that demonstrated more of Stevie’s traditional leanings and slow blues textures. More of a marketing deal introducing young guitarists to the great Texas blues-rock hero, this disc likely won’t stay in your rotation for very long for lack of stand out recordings. Better still, it is just another collection piece for many in already wonderful catalog.

CLICK HERE for more information or to purchase.

 Chicago Blues Update

Live Blues reviews by Chicago Blues editor Lordy

Blues Beat: Chicago (Photos by August Lord)

The Chicago Rhythm & Blues Kings at B.L.U.E.S.

“You have to be careful so that you don’t make those around you sick.” said the doctor in a somber tone. I was aware I had MTS, but I thought I had it under control. You see Music Trivia Syndrome, while relatively harmless to the carrier can irritate the hell out of others. I had no more record labels to read, or album covers to study, but then came CD inserts, and the internet. Sometimes I will ask a stranger, “Who wrote that?” “Who was the drummer on that session?”

The good news is that in the Blues genre, the history of sessions, and players, labels and real names is part of the charm. Go to your computer and “Google” Gene Barge. I didn’t know all that. I did know him as a key player in the legendary Chicago horn driven Big Twist & the Mellow Fellows. Appearing at B.L.U.E.S. with several BT&TMF alumni, and some talented youth, they are known as The Chicago Rhythm & Blues Kings. Now forget the legend that is Daddy G, and know that this is still one monster live horn section.

The youth was Rob Blaine who provided both incendiary guitar and strong bluesy vocals. His guitar work was a good match for this world-class horn section. Mike Ciamcanelli on bass and Lou Palmer on drums provided a solid beat and bottom to a night of great rhythm and blues.

Besides vocals, Mr. Barge (Daddy G) paired his tenor sax with the tenor sax of Terry Ogolini. The brass was provided by trumpeter Dan Tenuto. These three have been playing together so long; they seem to breathe together as a horn section. During their respective solos, it is obvious they are virtuosos, but to me the magic is in the vibrant presence of a live horn section that doesn’t come across on recordings. Chicago has a tradition of music with great horn parts, but it you just have to hear it live.

All right now: Name three Chicago based groups that successfully used horn sections. I’m sorry doc.






 CLICK HERE to visit Lordy's website at

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

 Featured Advertisers


Our CD's - "HooDoo Blues" & "Its Gonna Be Alright

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

Coast to Coast  Booking  by - Handlebar Productions
Oh Whata' Records presents....

 Chicago Winter Blues Tour
January 18-21, 2008

Say goodbye to the winter blues & hello to your weekend adventure in the Blues Capital of the world!

What's Included:

  • 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:

Sign up today!   Call Leslie at 512-627-4790 or email

Willie King DVD

 NEWS! 12/12/07 - Willie King DVD nominated for a 2007 Blues Award by the Blues Foundation!

Dutch film-makers Saskia Rietmeijer and Bart Drolenga of Visible World Films came to America with the intention of producing a documentary about African American arts and culture in the deep South. When they met Willie King, they decided instead to devote their efforts to creating a DVD about Willie's life and times.

Over a period of several months, the couple recorded Willie King as he worked with his community in Pickens County and performed at festivals, juke joints and parties.

The DVD is a fascinating collage of Willie King's life and many activites, illuminated by searing live performances and interviews with his family and friends. It enables the viewer to experience what it is like to be a modern bluesman living in the Alabama Black Belt, "down in the woods."

To Purchase this DVD Now CLICK HERE








Featured Events

 Quad-Cities "only Blues" venue!

3303 Brady St. Davenport, Iowa  * MAP *  (563) 324-4619

No Cover Charge!

 Blues Society News

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

Dec 24 & Dec 31 - no Blue Mondays (Christmas Eve and New Year's Eve)
Jan 7 - Blues Deacons     Jan 14 - Delta Highway from Memphis     
Jan 21 - Bill Lupkin & the Chicago Blues Coalition w/ Barrel House Chuck
Jan 28 - Jim Suhler & Monkey Beat from Texas      Febru
ary 4 - Deak Harp Blues Band
Feb 11 - The Groove Daddies      Feb 18 - The Sofa Kings
Feb 25 - The Todd Wolfe Blues Project originally from PA - guitarist for Sheryl Crow 1993-1998


The River City Blues Society - Peoria. IL
RCBS is pleased to announce the newly elected 2008 officers. President - Bob Kieser, Vice President - Scott Gregory, Secretary - Tadd Swanson, Treasurer - Jim Buckley


 Blues Want Ads

Artist/Graphic Design Help Wanted

Long Hours - LOW Pay for "Keepin' The Blues Alive"!  Print advertising experience helpful.  Please send résumé and contact info to:


Touring Artist Seeks Booking Agent

International blues artist is interviewing agents/agencies for representation in the United States and Canada. For more information visit the artist website at: 
Send résumé and contact info to 

Music Lessons

Blues Guitar & Harmonica Lessons in Los Angeles CA. Affordable rates: $25/hour from my home or $35/hour from yours. 15 years of professional playing/performing experience, 10 years of professional teaching experience. Patient instructor, all levels taught (beginner to advanced). Strong communicator, well-organized step-by-step approach.  Passion/enthusiasm for music, good listener
Teach a wide variety of styles, including: Chicago/Texas/West Coast Blues, classic/contemporary rock, funk, R & B, Latin, jazz, soul, swing, rockabilly, alt. country, etc.

Utilize various teaching methods, including tablature, chord charts, taping lessons, ear training, fingerpicking, playing with soul, vibrato, bending, songwriting, and “comping” techniques on acoustic or electric guitar and mandolin. Contact Vince at

I'm looking to get a good schedule of students, young and old... Give me a call! 920-562-0018  Thanks! Dale Anderson

For Sale

MUST SELL   For sale, please help a guy out!   I bought my telecaster no money down and now I have to pay for it.  American Telecaster Deluxe, Aged Cherry with pearl pick guard, Blonde neck. Humbucker switch for pickups w/Hard shell case. It is the most beautiful guitar I shouldn't have bought, Paid $1300.00 List at $1785.oo (ok right) make me an offer  Like Village Indiana Address, Just south of Chicago 1 hr 219-992-9455 Craig

Gigs Wanted

Blues guy 54 yrs old, can play some, can sing some, Need to be in a band. I have a strat and deluxe reverb. I am south of Chicago 1 hour but will travel. I have about 12-15 songs I can play and sing right now but tired of playing alone. Just moved here. I would like to find a blues group that needs a helping hand. If I am not there PLEASE leave a message.  Craig  219-992-9455


Organist looking to pick up work in the Peoria, IL  or quad city area (Moline, IL Davenport, IA) ( I’ve got good gear & dependable transportation)….Contact via email 

 Place Your Blues Want Ad for Free

Place your WANT AD here for FREE. Buy or sell, musicians wanted, gigs wanted etc. Limit 500 words. All ads submitted will be used if space allows. If space is limited, a selection of ads submitted will be randomly selected to appear in the Blues Blast.

 Send your ad submission to

Live Blues Calendar

 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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 Submit your blues performances for FREE at:

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You can post your festivals and performance dates on our website for FREE at:  If you list your performance dates they will go to thousands of Blues fans in the next Blues Blast emails. They will also be listed on the Blues Shows page at also offers paid/sponsored advertising for Festivals and Club Owners, Recording Companies and Performers selling their own music or performances. We can put your Blues advertisement on our homepage at:  either as a sponsored event or as a featured event, product, recording or merchandise .

We have a very large and growing email list of Blues Fans, Musicians, Club Owners, Blues Societies and Festival Promoters all over the Central US. We send out weekly Blues Blasts of Blues events and news. With paid advertising we can feature your event or product in these emails. We are getting an enormous amount of visitors and hits. Our rates are very reasonable.

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