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Blues News You Can Use!
Let's Graduate
It is that time of year. Graduation! Perhaps some of you are joining our family in celebrating a 2021 graduate. If you are, congratulations to you and your graduates! It has been a tough year of disappointments for many students. Hopefully as young people, their families, and all our educators get vaccinated, things will start finally becoming open and safe allowing the next school year to enjoy more "normal" activities. 
Several new articles are featured this week. Don't miss the "Mark Your Calendar" article sharing the planned date for the fall OBS Blues Challenge. For harmonica enthusiasts, you will find an article with information for how to get involved in the 2021 SPAH convention which is being held online again this year. You will also find information about an interesting new website called Working Mojo. The site features interviews with working blues artists about their songwriting projects. Appearing once again this week you will find the announcement of the 2020 winners in the annual International Songwriting Competition. The article includes links to find out more about not only the winners, but also how artists can get involved in future competitions.
Always remember, this is YOUR newsletter! Please send feedback or suggestions our way. You can reach me by email at the address below. We appreciate our readers and want
to see your ideas included! 
~Sandy McCann
Mark Your Calendar
Blues Challenge Date
Looking ahead, the Ozark Blues Society Board of Directors is happy to announce we anticipate holding a regional Blues Challenge at The Meteor Guitar Gallery in Bentonville on October 22, 2021 in anticipation of the resumption of the International Blues Challenge in 2022.
Please stay tuned to this newsletter and/or visit WWW.OZARKBLUESSOCIETY.ORG
for updates and registration information later this summer.
Harmonica Enthusiasts
2021 SPAH
On-Line Convention
We learned this week, the 2021 SPAH harmonica convention will once again be held in a virtual format on August 10-14th. The convention promises something for every harmonica enthusiast wishing to connect with other players and grow their skills.
For more information or to register, visit WWW.SPAH.ORG
August 10-14, 2021 
60 Hours: Harmonicas, Friendship and Music!
Steven Ovadia's
Working MOJO
Songwriting Interviews
My name is Steven Ovadia. I'm a blues writer who has a new project. It's called Working Mojo and it features in-depth interviews with blues artists about their songwriting process  a topic that's sorely under covered.
Working Mojo is a labor of love, so I'm reaching out to blues societies to get the word out. Here are some recent interviews:
I hope you'll enjoy the interviews and share them with your members. And if you have any ideas for how to spread the word about the site, or just want to talk, I'm always happy to speak with fellow blues fans.
Steven Ovadia
 Winners Announced
2020 International Songwriting Competition
Swedish Folk/Pop Duo Smith & Thell and Songwriter/Producer Peter Kvint Win the Grand Prize in US-Based International Songwriting Competition (ISC)

Judges Include Coldplay, Dua Lipa, Bebe Rexha, Linkin Park, American Authors, Tom Waits, Trevor Daniel, Cam, Dave Koz, Camila, and More

May 3, 2021 -- The International Songwriting Competition (ISC) is pleased to announce its 2020 winners. Now going into its 20th year, ISC is the world’s largest and most prestigious international songwriting competition, receiving more than 26,000 entries from 158 countries. More than $150,000 in cash and merchandise is awarded to 71 winners in 23 categories covering all genres of music.

Winning ISC is a distinction that has helped many artists go on to achieve greater success. Previous winners have included: Tones and I; Illenium; Vance Joy; Bastille; Fantastic Negrito; R.LUM.R; Gotye; Lindsey Stirling; Kimbra; Dustin Lynch; Faouzia; The Band Perry; Kehlani; Gregory Porter; Passenger; Gin Wigmore; Missy Higgins; For King and Country; Adrienne Lenker (Big Thief); and many more.

Over the years many Scandinavian songwriters have become winners in ISC, but for the first time in its history, the competition’s highest honor, the overall Grand Prize, is awarded to Scandinavian songwriters. This year the Grand Prize is awarded to Swedish folk/pop duo Smith & Thell (comprised of Maria Jane Smith and Victor Thell) and songwriter/producer Peter Kvint for their co-written song “Goliath.” The Grand Prize includes $25,000 in cash (US) and more than $40,000 in additional merchandise and services.

“We’ve always written about our real stories and our real life history. It’s always beautiful to be acknowledged for telling your own, real-life story,” said Smith & Thell. “’Goliath’ is about facing your fears and learning that no challenge is too big to handle. It’s an honor to hear that the message of the song reached through to the jury and to win this prestigious award especially during these challenging times.”

Smith & Thell met as teenagers at a music event in their hometown of Helsingborg, a coastal town in southern Sweden and began to write songs together, both for themselves and other artists. They are no strangers to Swedish fans as many of their singles, including the ISC-winning song "Goliath," have topped the Swedish radio charts. They premiered "Goliath" at the Swedish Grammis Award show where they took home the award for the 2019 Songwriter of the Year. The song (from their 2021 album Pixie's Parasol) delivers a message of hope, determination, and perseverance. Although it was written in response to a year that was particularly challenging for them personally, the song's impassioned and uplifting themes are universally shared in light of recent events throughout the world. They described "Goliath" as their anthem for the underdog, saying “No one is too small to make a difference. A reminder to us all that we’re so much stronger than we think.” Their co-writer, Peter Kvint, is one of the most sought-after and successful songwriters and producers in Sweden, having written and/or produced many international, chart-topping hits for global artists such as Britney Spears, Heather Nova, Natasha Bedingfield, and Trace Adkin, as well as numerous Swedish artists.

“Music is remarkable in that it can change the way you see the world. The song "Goliath" does just that and is relevant to everyone personally, as we all have struggles to overcome. The message is one that everyone can relate to and is one of those anthemic songs that makes you feel good and uplifted,” said ISC Founder and Director, Candace Avery. “Moreover, the song is perfectly crafted and is ear candy with a chorus that sticks in your head long after the song is finished. This is the first time the Grand Prize has ever been given to Swedish songwriters, and we are very excited to be awarding our highest honor to these very talented artists.”

In addition to the Grand Prize winner, many other deserving songwriters also share in the prestige and kudos of winning their respective categories in ISC. These winners hail from all over the world (56% of this year’s winners come from outside the USA) and represent diverse cultures while ranging from talented amateurs to seasoned songwriting veterans. The 23 categories include all genres of contemporary music, from Pop to World Music to Country to Instrumental, and many more.

For a complete list of ISC 2020 winners go to

ISC is sponsored by: Arturia, Audeze, Celebrity Access, Eventric, Fender, Fano Guitars, Gig Salad, iZotope, Lurssen Mastering, Merch Cat, Musicians Institute, Play MPE, PreSonus, Shure, SongU, Sweetwater, and TuneCore.

Entries are now open for ISC 2021. In honor of ISC's upcoming 20th anniversary, entries are only $20 for a limited time. This marks the lowest entry fee in ISC this year.

For more information and to enter, go to

For low-res photos of all winners, go to

For high-res photos, please contact Candace Avery at
Support Options
For Local Artists
Please check this section of the newsletter weekly for ideas of how to support local musicians and venues. Submissions are being reduced to contact information this week as we restart the Live Music Calendar.
Brick Fields
 Famous for Blues Therapy
We have released a single from the upcoming album. Here is a link to the video "Take Me To the Riverside"
Once live music begins again, folks can stay updated on our concerts by signing up to our email at and following us on Facebook at: 
We also have two stores on our website one for music merchandise and another for Blues Therapy handmade items such as essential oil blends, Jewelry, tie dyes, bath salts, body butters and more.
Thank you for  your support.
I pray that each of you and your families are all doing okay through this. 
The Jeff Horton Band
Based in Bentonville, Arkansas, the
Jeff Horton Band definitely has
a passion for the Blues! For the last
10 years Jeff and the guys have
done their part in sharing the Blues 
as much as possible.
Now, they’re about to release their first all original album,
“These Blues are all Mine”!
Just like at their live shows, this album features a variety of Blues, from
the traditional to the contemporary there’s definitely something for
everyone that loves the Blues.
It's Official! A CD release party will be held at The Meteor Guitar Gallery in Bentonville on April 30th - Show starts 6:45pm. Joining the JHB, will be special guests Buddy Shute & The Motivators. It's going to be an awesome night!
Please follow the band on FACEBOOK, INSTAGRAM, and on their webpage, THEJEFFHORTONBAND.COM for information about the album and when and where you can catch them live!
Jimmy Wayne Garrett

For more information about Jimmy Wayne Garrett, his schedule, recent interviews, or buy the latest album, visit:
His music may also be found HERE:
YouTube link  *****
Buddy Shute and the Motivators  
Buddy Shute and the Motivators live at the Eureka Springs Auditorium on YouTube: LiveAtTheAud

To learn more about the band, visit:

Facebook: Buddy Shute and the Motivators
Music Calendar 
Please enjoy the following listings comprised of bands, venues, and/or organizations that support Ozark Blues Society. Always check with individual venues for event details and schedule changes. Submit weekly listings by emailing: SANDY

**Limited listings are currently available
on published community calendars.
If you know of dates for local blues
not included below, please email Sandy at the above email link.
  • Earl and Them for Happy Hour at George's Majestic Lounge in Fayetteville
  • Steve Dimmitt at JJ's Grill and Chill on Dickson in Fayetteville
  • In The Atrium: The Crumbs at the WAC in Fayetteville
  • NWA Acoustics at The Taproom in Bentonville
  • Modern August at Fred's Hickory Inn in Bentonville
  • Jamberry Music Festival at The Farm in Eureka Springs
  • SoNA Voices for oboe and strings at Mount Sequoyah in Fayetteville
  • Buddy Shute and the Motivators at Ozark Folkways Grand Reopening in Winslow
  • Gary Hutcison at JJ's Grill and Chill in Fort Smith
  • Blew Reed and the Flatheads at The Rowdy Beaver Den in Eureka Springs
  • Jamberry Music Festival at The Farm in Eureka Springs
  • Brick Fields Blues Therapy at Moranos in Fayetteville
  • Ashtyn Barbaree at La Heurta on Crossover in Fayetteville
  • Take Cover at Pedaler's Pub in Bentonville
  • Jimmy Wayne Garrett at Bubba's BBQ in Eureka Springs
  • Happy Hour at George's Majestic Lounge in Fayetteville
  • Jimmy Wayne Garrett at Levi's Gastrolounge in Rogers
  • 2021 Zatarains Bayou Bash at The Meteor Guitar Gallery in Bentonville
  • Justin Logan and Michael Fields Jr at The Momentary Greens in Bentonville
  • Ashtyn Barbaree at Dive in Bentonville
  • An Ode to Billy Joe at Meteor Guitar Gallery in Bentonville
  • Fuzzy Logic at Blu Fresh Fish Marketplace in Bentonville
  • Buddy Shute and the Motivators at Ozark Folkways Grand Reopening in Winslow
  • Blew Reed and the Flatheads at Legends Saloon in Eureka Springs
Mark Your Calendar 
Please Submit Dates for Regional Blues Artists and Group Events HERE
In this issue:  5/14/2021
Let's Graduate
Mark Your Calendar2021Blues Challenge Date
Harmonica Enthusiasts2021 SPAHOn-Line Convention
Steven Ovadia'sWorking MOJOSongwriting Interviews
 Winners Announced2020 International Songwriting Competition
Support OptionsFor Local Artists
LIVE MUSICMusic Calendar 
On this day in Blues History May 14
This Week's Quote
Blues Education Supporters
Check Out these regular local radio programs
Get Involved with the Ozark Blues Society

Links You Can Use

On this day
in Blues History
 May 14

Today’s show features music performed by Bertha “Chippie” Hill, Howlin’ Wolf, and Big Maybelle
This Week's Quote
"A lot of people wonder, what is the blues? Well, I'm
gonna tell you what
the blues is."
Howlin' Wolf
Blues Education Supporters
Thanks to the following for their support of blues education.

Check Out these regular local radio programs

"The Generic Blues Show" hosted by Paul Kelso airs every Friday night at 9pm on KUAF 91.3FM

Rockin' Hog Radio presents "Sunday Morning Blues" from 8am to 10am every Sunday
Get Involved with the Ozark Blues Society

Annual membership levels begin at $15 and give you so much in return, including meeting new friends while enjoying the best blues artists in the area.  
By being a member of The Ozark Blues Society of Northwest Arkansas, you are helping to support the Arts and to preserve the Original American Art Form known as The Blues.
Membership Benefits Include:
Weekly E-newsletter
Opportunities to win tickets to events
VIP seating at events (when available)
Discounts on OBS merchandise
Social networking – meeting other people who also love the blues
Opportunities to volunteer on OBS committees and at events
Ability to attend board meetings and vote on upcoming organizational issues and elections
Visit our Website to renew or join!


Links You
Can Use
Arkansas Music Pavillion
Arkansas Music Works
American Blues News
The Blues Foundation
Block Street Records
Blues For A Cause
Blues Festivals Guide
Blues Guitar News
Crystal Bridges
Downtown Bentonville
Eureka Springs Blues Weekend
Free Weekly
George’s Majestic Lounge
Guitar Center
J L Sound & Lighting Productions
National Blues Museum
North AR Jazz Society
NWA Tunedin
Rockin' Hog Radio
Sherry L Speer Photography
The Founders Room
The Walmart Museum
Tom Mowry Photography


Ozark Blues Society of Northwest Arkansas  |  P O Box 2004  |  Bentonville, AR 72712  | 

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