All the blooze that’s
fit to play!
By Blurt Staff
A few weeks ago we brought you word about the Blues
Foundation’s announcement of this year’s Blues Hall of Fame inductees – among
them, Taj Mahal,
Irma Thomas, Son Seals, and Rev. Gary Davis. Now comes news about the first
round of performers that will be at the 30th annual Blues Music Awards taking
part in a 6-hour blues marathon.
It all takes place May 7 in Memphis
at the Cook Convention Center, full details at http://www.blues.org. The legendary B.B.
King, incidentally, will present the award named in his honor, the B.B. King
Entertainer of the Year Award.
Here’s the roster of artists slated to perform thus far –
see ya in Memphis!
* Bettye LaVette – Detroit-born singer has performed at the Kennedy Center and at Obama’s inauguration and
counts a #1 Blues Album on the Billboard chart in her storied career.
* Taj Mahal – beloved 2009 Blues Hall of Fame inductee and
GRAMMY winner with a four-decade-plus career.
* Irma Thomas – newly minted Blues Hall of Famer and GRAMMY
winner is “The Soul Queen of New
* Otis Taylor – the banjo-toting trance-blues man and
“one of the most innovative, thought-provoking blues artists to emerge in
the last 20 years.” (Billboard).
* Marcia Ball – piano player/singer counts #1 Blues Albums,
of whom Rolling Stone said, “Her
songs ring with emotional depth.”
* A Chicago Blues Jam with drummer Kenny Smith,
drummer/harmonica player Willie Big Eyes Smith (Muddy Waters), bassist Bob
Stroger (Otis Rush), guitarist Lurrie Bell (Carrie Bell, Buddy Guy), and
* Gaye Adegbalola – acclaimed singer and member of Saffire:
The Uppity Blues Women, blues historian, and openly gay activist.
* Rory Block – slide guitar player/singer learned directly
from Son House and has been called “an inspiration” by Bonnie Raitt.
* Albert Castiglia – Miami-based and a former member of
Junior Well’s band.
* Janiva Magness – blues/soul songstress of whom No
Depression said, “She simply sings heartbreak, hunger and humor–sings ’em
with equally great chops and feeling–and lets that speak for itself.”
* Kenny Neal – son of Louisiana
harmonica great Raful Neal and “one of the brightest young stars on the
blues horizon, and a gifted artist” (Blues
* Maria Muldaur – has scored a platinum record and has
recorded with the likes of Ry Cooder and Stevie Wonder.
* Eden Brent – Mississippi piano player nicknamed
“Little Boogaloo,” performed at President Bush’s inauguration in
2005, and won the International Blues Competition in 2006.
* The Mannish Boys – this LA-based “electric blues
supergroup” (All Music Guide)
For a complete list of the 30th Blues Music Awards Nominees,