‘TIS A REMARKABLE SEASON INDEED...
For as long as I can remember, I’ve tried to wake up counting my blessings, even when there didn’t seem many to count. No, especially when they didn’t seem plentiful. Fortunately, those less than plentiful times have been few and far between, so gratitude is my attitude most of the time. Right now I’m both grateful and humbled, again, by this community we’ve all built around these nasty old Blues. On 12/4, many of you came out and helped raise money for Blues Star Connection, and the following Saturday, you did it again for the Emergency Family Assistance Association (E.F.A.A), not only raising funds, but the amount of food and basic necessities lining the hallway was a lovely site. That was the Holiday CBS Party and fund-raiser, and they booked JP Soars and the Red Hots for the event; it was yet another night to remember. JP and I are working on getting them back out in the spring, so stay tuned. I’ll have our Senior Guitar Correspondent fill you in more on this band as that time gets closer. Thank you all for serving as continual confirmation that human beings are inherently decent and compassionate. Well, human beings who listen to the Blues anyway...
Before I journey ahead a few days, here’s what’s happening now, from Steady Rollin’ Bob Margolin, Prodigal Son of the Outlook:
Happy holidays. I am proud to report that the songs that caring musicians have contributed to bluesforthegulf.org are now available:
Blues For The Gulf was conceived last summer, the response of the Blues Community to the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. We solicited songs and they are now available for free download at this site. There is an easy Paypal button on the page, so that you can donate if you want to. We raised over $3000 from benefits last September. The problem in the Gulf is ongoing and still in the news often.
We have posted original songs about the oil spill, related the Gulf Coast, or just donated for your musical enjoyment by some fine artists: Matt Hill, Laurie Morvan, Nathan Denton, Candye Kane, Hamilton Loomis, Dave Riley & Bob Corritore, Michael Packer, Sandy Atkinson, Mike Hammar, Peter Parcek, Ashley Raines, The Potent Bathers, John Ohnmacht, John Lisi & Delta Funk, Lionel Young, Bill Gildea, 2BLU & The Lucky Stiffs, Gary Allegretto, James Miller, Jeff Dale & The South Woodlawners, Bottoms Up Blues Gang, Marvin & Young, and A.J. Croce.
I wrote some oil spill lyrics to Muddy Waters’ classic “Louisiana Blues” and recorded the song solo, with Muddy-style slide. Thanks to the Scott Cameron Organisation (administers Muddy’s estate) and ARC Music for allowing my version to be used for Blues For The Gulf. I think Muddy would have wanted to help us, and now he is.
Last Friday, I was surprised by a friend at my gig. He owns a seafood restaurant in Alabama that also presents Blues bands when they can. When the oil spilled last Spring, people stayed away from his restaurant and didn’t come back later. Now he’s on the road driving a truck and stopped in to my show. For him, and for the ecology and economy of the Gulf Coast, this isn’t over. Please enjoy our music, and donate if you can.
Thank you Bob, and thank you for all the hard work and hours you put into this. And Blues Fans, the best way for us to thank Bob and all of the musicians who donated their time and talent is to spread the word to donate, donate, donate! Oh, and enjoy the music. Which you will. I’ve heard them all, and this is a tremendous compilation of music and musicians. Seriously, copy and paste Bob’s message and send it to everyone you know, whether you know them to be Blues fans or otherwise. The Gulf needs the donations and continued attention to their plight. And who knows, maybe that annoying brother-in-law who only listens heavy metal might actually hear something he likes, and continue listening. Just think how much better the holiday dinner will be if you at least have the Blues as a common ground!
Ok. One of the people who donated a song is our own Johhny O! Johnny O will be back tomorrow night with his partner in Jelly Roll Bakers, Andy Irvine. These two bring a huge sound and plenty of dance tunes. They also represented us in Memphis last year in the Solo/Duo category. Great talents on their own, but together, look out! Plus, we can welcome Johnny back from Brazil. Just don’t mention how tan and rested he looks. Pretend not to notice.
Friday night is the return of Girls on Top, and we know what to expect from this high-energy bunch: a packed dance floor. Always fun and sexy, they’re a great way to dance off the workweek.
[ Continues ---> ]
Thu 12/16 Jelly Roll Bakers
Fri 12/17 Girls On Top ($5 Cover)
Sat 12/18 Jenn Cleary -CD Release Party
Sun 12/19 Jazz Jam w/ Mark Diamond
Thu 12/23 Papa Juke
Fri 12/24 Xmas Party w/Outlook Friends
Sat 12/25 Christmas
Sun 12/26 Blues Jam w/ Heavy Cats
We have another girl on top this Saturday! Jenn Cleary is back. It’s been more than a year since she’s played the room with her band, so it should be a barnburner. It’s also a CD Release Party, and that CD has been getting some good press. Here’s a message from Jenn:
It has been a very fun week as very positive reviews for my new CD, Back to the Wheel have started to be published in magazines, newspapers and online, so I have included a sampling below that I thought you might appreciate. For all of you who have supported my new tunes, thank you so much! If you are interested in the new CD or maybe giving one as a nice holiday gift (a personalized signed copy?), go to: www.jenncleary.com/store.shtml Thanks! Jenn
Cleary’s Wheel, Bruce Von Stiers, BVS Reviews Jenn Cleary is one of those singer songwriters who goes unnoticed for quite a while and then with a song or two gets a touch of the spotlight. Jenn had a debut album about four years ago that got her some recognition but didn't propel her to the national spotlight. But Jenn has a new album out that should place her in the top tier of blues rock performers...... http://www.bvsreviews.com/jenncleary.htm
LEE ZIMMERMAN, Blurt Magazine (formerly Harp) She may sound sassy and assured, but there's something distinctly old school and traditional about Colorado's Jenn Cleary. One need venture no further than the embraceable melodies that survey swing, blues and retro pop in ways that make them seem both new and yet strikingly familiar. http://blurt-online.com/reviews/view/2631
Mark S. Tucker and Folk & Acoustic Music Exchange (FAME)… telling stories about the everyman/woman, the trials and travails of day-to-day life, tons of sympathy reaching for the lost and forgotten but also a steadfast backbone of hope for each and every one of those trying to find their way up from the bottom.....http://www.acousticmusic.com/fame/p06818.htm
Jeffrey Sisk DailyNewsEmail.com Bluesy singer/song- writer Jenn Cleary isn't quite a household name, but she has a growing base of followers that includes new Pirates manager Clint Hurdle, who became a fan a few years ago when he was managing the Colorado Rockies. “Back to the Wheel” is the Colorado native’s sophomore full-length and finds her channeling the likes of heavyweights Janis Joplin and Bonnie Raitt throughout the 12-track release. The record kicks into high gear with the piano boogie of “Last Day of Vacation Blues” and continues with a series of keep- ers that include the Joplin-esque title track, “Completely Free,” “Moments of Grace,” “Don't Try and Change Me” and “Hope.” If you dig old school blues-tinged rock, Cleary’s latest is a worthy addition to your collection. (JS)
As I leave you this week with a reminder from Mark Diamond:
Hi there blues fans,
As most of you know, I host the Sunday Night Blues Jam on the 2nd and 4th Sundays of the month with The Heavy Cats, but, I know many blues fans dig jazz as well, so I invite you all to come and check out The Sunday Night Jazz Jam too, which is on the 1st, 3rd, and 5th Sundays of the month. The House band is Big Swing Trio with Andy Weyl on keys, Paul Romaine on drums, and myself on bass - http://www.markdiamondmusic.com/bigswingtrio.html and we dig deep into the straight ahead jazz groove. We have many of the area’s great jazz players, young and older come by, and the music is at a very high level for the sake of the players and the listeners. This jam started over 6 years ago at The Outlook and continues to be a great night out for the music, the food, adult beverages, and friends. I hope you’ll check it out sometime soon, and I know you’ll have a great time, as always at Blues and Greens! Thanks, take care, and I hope to see YOU there! ~Mark Diamond~