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Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Valentine Blues Playlist



So, you got the blues on this special day? You're just in luck, because I got you covered with this lonesome blues playlist for you to drown your sorrow away.

So if you're single and alone, or in a relationship where you can't be satisfied, this list is for you:


Kind Hearted Woman - Muddy Waters



You Done Lost Your Good Thing Now - BB King



Wont' Be Hangin' Around - Albert King



A Man Like Me is Hard to Find - Lightnin' Hopkins



Last Time Blues - Charlie McCoy



I'm Getting Tired - Snooky Pryor



Nobody Loves Me - Memphis Slim



Sometimes I Wonder - Otis Spann




Monday, February 13, 2017

Blues Winners at the 59th Grammy Awards





So the Grammy Awards happened last night, and while we are not concerned with anything else other than the blues, here are the winners of the two categories in Blues:


Personally speaking I would have liked Lurrie Bell to win the Traditional category, as I consider Bobby Rush to be more of soul/R&B, and The Record Company for Contemporary, but nonetheless congrats to the winners!

Here's a video from each winner:






Thursday, December 29, 2016

Blues Review 2016



Another year has gone, this time one of the harshest. Wars, many influential celeb deaths, and Pokemon Go.

This year was a turning point for me, as I was signed to a record label and my album is coming early next year, as well having some great gigs and played in Bahrain for the first time with my rock side-project The Watertowers.

My album, coming soon in 2017

Blog wise I was not that active this year, mainly because my life and music commitments too a lot of my blog slice of the pie; hopefully you stuck around with me and I hope to bring you more blues next year. Have a good one everybody.

Oh, and in case you missed it, here's my latest Youtube upload of my band performing Dust My Broom at the DAI Fall Festival last month:




Sunday, December 25, 2016

Christmas Blues Playlist

How bluesmen celebrate Christmas

Merry Christmas everyone! This time of year is always great for the blues, because you spend all your money on gifts, might spend it away from family and friends, cold weather, and all that.

So to celebrate the Christmas blues, here's a few tunes for the season:


BB King - 'Back Door Santa'


Sonny Boy Williamson - 'Sonny Boy's Christmas Blues'



Freddie King - Christmas Tears



The Drifters - Santa Claus Got the Blues



John Lee Hooker - Blues for Christmas



Clarence 'Gatemouth' Brown - Christmas



Monday, December 12, 2016

Blues Nominees for the 2017 Grammy Awards



The official Grammy website has announced their nominations for next year's event. Of course, we don't give a crap about anythin' but the blues, so here are your nominees this year:


BEST TRADITIONAL BLUES ALBUM


Can't Shake This Feeling
Lurrie Bell


Live At The Greek Theatre
Joe Bonamassa



Blues & Ballads (A Folksinger's Songbook: Volumes I & II)
Luther Dickinson



The Soul Of Jimmie Rodgers
Vasti Jackson



Porcupine Meat
Bobby Rush



BEST CONTEMPORARY BLUES ALBUM


The Last Days Of Oakland
Fantastic Negrito


Love Wins Again
Janiva Magness


Bloodline
Kenny Neal



Give It Back To You
The Record Company



Everybody Wants A Piece
Joe Louis Walker



--

Not a bad list, but obviously there's a bit of genre cross-leaping; some are not 'blues' per se, but we gotta work with what we got. 

My picks for winners are Lurrie Bell for Traditional and Fantastic Negrito for Contemporary. 

See you on February 12!

Sunday, December 11, 2016

Fender Drops American Standard, Renamed American Professional Series



Fender announced that their American Standard series of guitars & basses will be rebranded as the American Professional Series.

It adds some new improvements to their existing line, most notably the pickups will be all replaced by V-Mod pickups designed by Time Shaw, new neck profiles (more vintage-like), taller frets, new hardshell case, and other minor changes. Here's a full comparison:



See the new set below; I like the changes but the color choices are very limited and I'm sad they dropped the turtleshell pickguards off the basses. They look very bland now.


Stratocaster


Stratocaster HSS


Stratocaster HH


Telecaster


Jazzmaster 


Jaguar



Precision Bass (5 String also available)



Jazz Bass (5 String and Fretless also available)




Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Another Year Without Jazz at Dubai Jazz Fest



Oh look! It's that time of year where I bash the Dubai Jazz Festival again.

It's not even been one year since my last post about this goddammed festival, but hey if it wasn't for beating on dead horses it wouldn't be the blues.

This year ladies and gents, without even announcing the full lineup, we get this for the 2017 edition:


Dear god they done fucked it up again. And get this: the cheapest ticket (per night of course, since Mariah and Enrique are playing on different days) is $90!

For comparison, at the Winter Jazz Festival in New York in January, you can buy an all-out pass for 5 full days with over 50 JAZZ artists for only $160 :




I don't wanna be too unfair about ticket prices, because hey, it's Dubai right? I mean... you can't compare it to New York fuckin' City right? (hint: sarcasm)

I still propose an anti-Dubai Jazz Fest be launched at the same day as the true anti-thesis of that watered-down, commercialized festival will be. But I digress, we know that won't happen.

So for a story 3 years running, this has been your grumpy neighborhood bluesman signing off. 


Monday, December 5, 2016

Blues Summit: SRV, Albert King, BB King, and Paul Butterfield Share the Stage



The Sky Is Crying, captured live at the Ebony Showcase Theater, Los Angeles, California on April 15, 1987.

And the sky did cry, seeing all these legendary bluesmen share the stage for an epic show.





Thursday, November 24, 2016

Blues With a Message: 'Do Right Blues' - Big Bill Broonzy


Big Bill Broonzy, one of the major influencers in early Chicago blues, made a big name for himself from the late 1930's until his death in 1958. 

His folk blues style was the basis for many later blues musicians, such as Muddy Waters, and his legacy lives on with many of his songs becoming blues standards.

Sometime in the early 50's he traveled to Europe and made a great living touring there, resulting in a few albums. This song is recorded in Paris, France sometime in 1956 or so. The song holds a message, to be a good, kind person, to get equal treatment by others.

Enjoy!

Monday, November 14, 2016

'Riverside Blues' - Otis Spann




Otis Spann was one of the main pillars of Chicago blues piano; he was also one of the mainstays of Muddy Waters' Blues Band from 1952 until his untimely death in 1970. 

Otis released a few albums as a solo artist in the 60's and has played with many of the big blues giants like Howlin' Wolf to Bo Diddley. 

He was known to play solo piano in mellow moans and expressive voice, and this song from his 1966 album "Good Morning Mr. Blues" symbolizes that: