|Celebrating our 2022 Blues Festival Guide... order now! |
|It’s our 20th Anniversary edition of the Blues Festival Guide! Our 2022 cover by photographer Marilyn Stringer features the talented Tullie Brae and Calvin Johnson at the 2021 North Atlantic Blues Festival!|
Order your copy now!!
The 2022 issue is shipping and full of the latest happenings in the industry, glimpses of blues history and, of course, blues festivals to plan your calendar! Here's an editorial peek!
Living Legend: Billy Branch By Bill Dahl
Fueling Musicians Program - Joe Bonamassa's program to support and assist musicians
WLAC: Blues, Baby Chicks and Stim-U-Aid By Reverend Billy C. Wirtz
That Chicago Blues Sound By Wayne Baker Brooks
20 Years of Blues By Kaati Gaffney, Publisher - celebrating our 20th and our journey
What’s Cookin’ - Blueswoman Shaun Murphy shares a fave recipe
Hooked on Blues Docs - by Tom Andrews Cool blues documentaries
Trumpet Records Courtesy of the Delta Blues Museum - a testament to Mississippi’s musical gift to the world
|Photo Moments with the 20th Annual BFG Magazine!|
|The 2022 Gator By The Bay happened over Mother's Day weekend in San Diego, California, and for me personally, it was very exciting to attend a festival again after so long. It was especially cool to get to see and experience friend and multi-award-winning and GRAMMY nominated Sugaray Rayford and his band in action in this setting.|
Indeed Sugaray and his band brought on the thunder and lightening in that festival tent... and he made certain it felt like being at a fevered, funky, pulsating blues revival.
Photo: Michele Lundeen
ORDER YOUR 2022 MAGAZINE!
*GET US A PIC WITH ANNUAL BFG MAG! If you're a BFG client contact your sales rep for one.
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The Blues Foundation is the official sponsor of our 20th Anniversary 2022 Blues Festival Guide!
|Rory Gallagher International Tribute Festival June 2-5|
|(BALLYSHANNON, CO. DONEGAL, IRELAND) - The Rory Gallagher International Tribute Festival is back in 2022 on Thursday June 2nd through Sunday June 5th. It will once again take place in the town where the legendary guitarist was born - Ballyshannon, Co. Donegal, Ireland. Since 2002 the Rory Gallagher International Tribute Festival has celebrated the music and life of Rory Gallagher in Ballyshannon.|
This unique Irish Festival of the Year winner features non-stop, free to view open air concerts on the streets of the town, the free to view Wild Atlantic Way gigs at the Rory Gallagher Statue, free pub gigs - day and night, busking, the nightly Big Top Festival Concerts (only ticketed events), exhibitions, films, discussions on Rory and the History of Irish rock music, festival camping and a great atmosphere of music fans that travel from over 25 countries worldwide.
There is a fantastic line-up of blues rock, rock and classic rock, blues and acoustic guitar performers and legendary bands from the world of blues rock. All in all there will be 30 Acts on 15 Stages over 4 Days. The Festival Big Top main stage will feature artists including Walter Trout, Eric Gales, Pat McManus Band, Bernie Marsden Band, Crow Black Chicken, Johnny Gallagher & The Boxtie Band, Dea Matrona and Fresh Evidence.
|Women of the Blues photo Exhibition and Blues Music Series|
|(CHICAGO, IL) – The historic Epiphany Center for the Arts (201 S Ashland Ave.), hailed by the Chicago Tribune as one of the “Top 8 Best Blues Clubs in Chicago,” will feature both free blues music and ticketed performances during a two-month celebration. In addition to its music lineup, Epiphany will also present the traveling photo exhibition “Women of the Blues: A Coast-To-Coast Collection,” June 8-July 23, curated by Lynn Orman Weiss, the founder and curator of the Women of the Blues Foundation.|
Spanning the traditional to the contemporary, the women of the blues have challenged the social, racial, and sexual status quo in the historically male-dominated landscape. The roots of the blues in Chicago are portrayed through the lenses of local and international photographers who have captured the boundless talents and influence of these women — this is the essence of “Women of the Blues: A Coast-To-Coast Collection.”
The collection of images celebrates female blues performers past and present, and features some of this year's artists performing at the Chicago Blues Festival, including Shemekia Copeland, Annika Chambers, Thornetta Davis, Anne Harris, Shirley Johnson, Demetria Taylor, Ivy Ford and Mary Lane. The exhibit also features blues women performing during Epiphany's Blues Music Series, including Carlise Guy, Brigitte Purdy and Win Noll. Guests attending the Music Series are invited to view the exhibition before and after all performances. Complimentary viewing appointments can also be made Tuesdays through Saturdays via email.
You can also register for the free opening reception happening June 8th 7-10 pm.
The lineup for Epiphany’s Summer 2022 Blues Music Series coinciding with the Chicago Blues Festival includes Studebaker John (5pm) and Brigitte Purdy (7:30pm) on June 10th, and the celebration continues with Win Noll & The Rockin' Souls and their special guest and honoree, the legendary Mary Lane on Sunday June 12 at 9pm following the Chicago Blues Festival.
To purchase music tickets and find the most up-to-date schedule check here.
(Photo of Mary Lane and Win Noll courtesy Lynn Weiss)
|Celebrate tradition at Chicago Blues Festival June 9-12|
|(CHICAGO, IL) - Chicago Blues Festival June 9-12 will be held in Millennium Park, the Chicago Riverwalk, in historic blues neighborhoods, Austin and Bronzeville, and Maxwell Street Market. 2022 marks the first citywide Chicago Blues Festival bringing top talent to downtown and these neighborhoods where Blues originated in Chicago, including “Taste of Chicago-Soul City Blues” in Austin (June 11) and “Bronzeville Blues” (June 12); in addition to “Blues on the Riverwalk” (June 9-10); a “Women in Blues showcase” in Millennium Park (June 12) and special tributes to Blues legends: Erwin Helfer, Bob Stroger, Gene Barge, Cicero Blake, Willie Henderson, and Mary Lane, Chicago's preeminent female blues vocalist.|
With a diverse lineup celebrating the blues’ past, present and future, the Chicago Blues Festival shares the great Chicago-born music tradition while shining a spotlight on the genre’s contributions to soul, R&B, gospel, rock, hip hop and more.
Just some of the artists scheduled to appear during the Chicago Blues Festival include Shemekia Copeland, Eric Gales, Joanna Connor, Toronzo Cannon, Eddie Cotton, Robert Kimbrough Sr., Keesha Pratt Band, Lil’ Ed & The Blues Imperials, Lurrie Bell, Mr. Sipp, Rico McFarland, Annika Chambers, Johnny Rawls, The Kinsey Report, Cedric Burnside, Ronnie Baker Brooks, Grady Champion, Billy Branch & Sons of Blues, Mike Wheeler Band, Nora Jean Wallace, Thornetta Davis, Fruteland Jackson, Tail Dragger, Demetria Taylor, Lucious Spiller, Nora Jean Wallace, Mud Morganfield and very special guests, and countless more.
(Annika Chambers photo by Laura Cabone)
|Artists from the Delta to Boston at Bentonia Blues Festival June 16-18|
(BENTONIA, MS) - This year marks the 50th anniversary of one of the longest-running blues festivals in the US. Bentonia is a tiny town in southern Yazoo County, Mississippi, which is also home to the oldest authentic juke joint that is still in daily operation. “When I started this festival in 1972, it was to help preserve the Bentonia style of blues. I knew that it would be a great event, but I never knew it would be as big as it is now,” says Jimmy “Duck” Holmes. Mr. Holmes, who still presents the festival, is a Grammy nominee and is considered to be the last of the Bentonia bluesmen. His parents opened the Blue Front Cafe in 1948, and he has owned and operated the juke joint himself since 1970.|
The 50th Anniversary Bentonia Blues Festival takes place June 16-18, 2022, in downtown Bentonia at Holmes' historic Blue Front Cafe. Blues musicians from as close as the Mississippi Delta and as far away as Boston will come to help keep the blues alive. The 2022 line-up includes festival favorites like Terry “Harmonica” Bean, 19th Street Red, Libby Rae Watson, and RL Boyce. Admission to the event is free.
More information about the line-up, dates, and times can be found on the Bentonia Blues Festival page on Facebook. Visitors to the area can find more information about places to eat and stay including hotels, motels, and RV Parks in the Yazoo County area at this website or by calling the Yazoo County CVB at 800-381-0662.
|June is African-American Music Appreciation Month|
|June is African American Music Appreciation Month! Created by President Jimmy Carter in 1979, this month celebrates the African American musical influences that comprise an essential part of our nation’s treasured cultural heritage.|
Formerly called National Black Music Month, this celebration of African American musical contributions is re-established annually by presidential proclamation. President Biden began, “Music has the power to lift our spirits, comfort our souls, and inspire our hearts. It gives a voice to the human spirit, creating a common language that unites people and breaks down barriers. Perhaps no music has had as profound and powerful an impact in shaping America’s musical score as Black music. Intricately woven into the tapestry of our Nation, Black music enriches our lives and pushes the boundaries of creativity.” And toward the end he proclaimed, “I call upon public officials, educators, and all the people of the United States to observe this month by honoring Black Musicians and raising awareness and appreciation of Black music.”
The National Museum of African American History and Culture at the Smithsonian Institution was established in 2003. You can read a primer here that they had created online “that will guide you through some of the different genres that African Americans have created, inspired and fostered.” From Sacred Music, Folk, Blues, Military Music, Jazz, Rhythm & Blues, Rock n’ Roll to Hip-Hop and Rap… a list of musical styles they say merely scratches the surface. But without a doubt, people around the globe have been “touched by music that carries elements of African American musical traditions.”
(Pictured: W.C. Handy)
|Blues for Breakfast for Mike Finnigan |
|Dennis McNally/Grateful Web|
The Phantom Blues Band has backed Taj Mahal for about forever, and as first-call L.A. session cats, played behind lots of other greats, from Bonnie Raitt and Etta James to Joe Cocker and Bob Marley. After years behind Taj, they began to release their own albums, and that’s told below.
The kicker is that their new release, Blues for Breakfast, is on Little Village, a unique non-profit record company that seeks out music that might not otherwise be heard – which is not a problem for the Phantoms. The real reason that Little Village is presenting this collection is that all proceeds will go to a music school named for the Phantom’s late keyboardist, a much-beloved man named Mike Finnigan.
The band asked veteran Los Angeles music maven Bill Bentley to tell the story:
For all his considerable musical talents, Taj Mahal has always been shrewd. And smart. In the early 1990s he knew he’d assembled something special in his backing band. He dubbed his secret weapon the Phantom Blues Band.
After helping Taj win two Grammys and gain three other nominations, the band members realized they could stand on their own. The Phantom Blues Band began assembling what would become Out Of The Shadows in 2006, an album that stretched the band and won raves at every turn.
The Phantom Blues Band - drummer Tony Braunagel, bassist/singer Larry Fulcher, guitarist/singer Johnny Lee Schell, saxophonists Joe Sublett, trumpeter Darrell Leonard and keyboardist/singer Mike Finnigan – has been a resilient unit. At various times, its members have backed just about every marquis band you can name, but they continued to support Taj when he needed them.
| Reno Blues Society needs volunteers for festival June 10-11|
|The Reno Blues Society (RBS) is looking for volunteers to help run their booth at The Great Eldorado BBQ, Brews and Blues June 10-11 in downtown Reno. They need volunteers for both days for set-up and teardown, selling RBS merchandise, renewing current members and signing up new members. Contact the RBS Vice President and Merchandise Chair Steve Kaye via email for info on available shifts and requirements.|
Also, "Third Thursday," the RBS monthly social, happens 5:15pm-6:30pm or so at Bighorn Bar & Grill on West 7th Street, just West of Keystone Ave. in Reno, NV. These socials will continue the third Thursday each month through October.
|Mississippi Heat :: MADELEINE |
Madeleine, Mississippi Heat’s 13th album, was recorded and mixed at the Chicago’s prestigious V.S.O.P studios; and mastered by Paul Blakemore (Nashville, TN). Co-produced by Pierre Lacocque and Grammy and Blues Music Award Winner Producer/Engineer Michael Freeman, who was the Blues Foundation’s Chair of the Board of Directors.
Madeleine is Pierre and Michael’s 6th collaborative project.
The 12 original songs are written by Pierre Lacocque, with the exception of 2 penned by Michael Dotson (tracks 8 and 11), and Inetta Visor (track 12, arranged by Michael Dangeroux).
Lurrie Bell, Carl Weathersby, Kenny “Beedy Eyes” Smith, NADIMA (background singers who worked with Aretha Franklin, Otis Clay and Stevie Wonder), Marc Franklin’s horn section, Ruben Alvarez and other guests, add considerably to the vibrant mix.
“The new recording sounds pristine and beautiful. [Pierre Lacocque] directs the band with his highly creative, virtuosic harmonica skills, stellar songwriting, and artistic vision. (His) harmonica just soars beyond imagination. So much talent on there!” – Linda Cain, Chicago Blues Guide
“Wow, congratulations. This is a thrilling album!” – Paul Blakemore, Grammy Award Winner, Recording/Mastering Engineer
|Mike Wheeler Band "That's What Love Will Make You Do"|
|Which Legendary Rhythm & Blues Cruise Hits Your Groove?|
|Bluesin’ is back baby! We're excited to Return to the West Coast in 2022! Cabins on Sale Now!|
LRBC #37 Sea Of Cortez
Cabins On Sale NOW! 95+% Sold & Going Fast…
Oct. 29 ~ Nov. 5, 2022
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Band Lineup, Cabin Availability
LRBC #38 Eastern Caribbean
Cabins SOLD OUT & Wait List is HOT!
Jan. 28 ~ Feb. 4, 2023
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Sailing on Holland America’s ms Nieuw Statendam. Band Lineup, Cabin Pricing & More Here! Join the Waitlist by visiting here or
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LEGENDARY RHYTHM & BLUES CRUISE
More Than A Cruise… More Than A Festival…
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|Holidays, Birthdays and... Just In Case|
|• June is African-American Music Appreciation Month|
• June 19 Father's Day
Birthdays upcoming of note:
Jun 3-Jimmy Rogers (1924-1997), Memphis Minnie (1897-1973), Curtis Mayfield (1942-1999), Heather Penrod-Rudd (BFG Sales Rep & Distribution Mgr); Jun 4-Tinsley Ellis (1957); Jun 8-James Harman (1946-2021), Derek Trucks (1979); Jun 9-Jackie Wilson (1934–1984); Jun 10-Howlin' Wolf aka Chester Arthur Burnett (1910-1976); Jun 12-Kenny Wayne Shepherd (1977); Jun 13-James Carr (1942-2001); Jun 17- Matt Hill (1985); Jun 18-Sara Martin (1884-1955); Jun 19-Jerry McCain (1930-2012), Big Bill Morganfield (1956); Jun 20-Lazy Lester (1933-2019); Jun 21-Skip James (1902-1969)
Just in case:
June 3rd is "Love Conquers All Day" This is a day to cherish those that you love ... yes, love makes the world go 'round and we certainly need as much of that as we can muster. "There is no force in the world that cannot be overcome by love." And, love can be romantic, or friendly or charitable. Bring it on!
There are countless blues songs about romantic love gone wrong, but what about those where love goes right? Charlie Musselwhite says "I'm Just Crazy For My Baby," Lonnie Mack declared "I Found Love," Big Maybelle testified "That's A Pretty Good Love," Eric Clapton affectionately shared "You Look Wonderful Tonight," Johnnie Taylor (and others) swooned "I Found A Love," Marcia Ball said "I'm Falling Back In Love With You," and Little Willie john said "I Need Your Love So Bad"... and that's just a tiny tip of the iceberg folks. Send me your "love" lists... I'd "love" to see them.
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|Radio Submit Roots Blues Chart |
|Billboard & iTunes #1 Blues Albums|
|Billboard/iTunes #1 Blues Albums - as of June 2, 2022|
|#1 Billboard |
What's It Gonna Take?
Just Like That
(Note: iTunes rankings change very often.
This is #1 as of e-Guide publishing time)
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|Rory Gallagher Int'l Festival|
Jun-02-2022 – Jun-05-2022
Co. Donegal, Ballyshannon, Ireland
Greeley Blues Jam 2022
Jun-03-2022 – Jun-04-2022
Greeley, Colorado, USA
Smokin’ in Steele
BBQ & Blues Fest
Jun-03-2022 – Jun-04-2022
Owatonna, Minnesota, USA
Jun-03-2022 – Jun-04-2022
Louisville, Kentucky, USA
Havre de Grace Jazz & Blues Fest
Jun-03-2022 – Jun-05-2022
Havre de Grace, Maryland, USA
Chester County Blues Barbecue
Elverson, Pennsylvania, USA
Russell City Awareness
Jun-04-2022 – Jul-30-2022
Hayward, California, USA
Jun-09-2022 – Jun-11-2022
Chicago Blues Festival
Jun-09-2022 – Jun-12-2022
Chicago, Illinois, USA
Flagstaff Blues and Brews
Jun-10-2022 - Jun-11-2022
Flagstaff, Arizona, USA
|For festival-event links|
please go to our website
| Utah Blues Festival|
Jun-10-2022 – Jun-11-2022
Salt Lake City, Utah, USA
BBQ, Brews & Brews Festival
Jun-10-2022 – Jun-11-2022
Reno, Nevada, USA
32nd Billtown Blues Festival
Jun-10-2022 - Jun-12-2022
Billtown, Pennsylvania, USA
Cape Fear Blues Festival
Jun-10-2022 – Jun-12-2022
Wilmington, North Carolina, USA
Stomp The Blues Festival
Springfield, Missouri, USA
Bentonia Blues Fest
Jun-16-2022 – Jun-18-2022
Bentonia, Mississippi, USA
Blues On The Fox
Jun-17-2022 – Jun-18-2022
Aurora, Illinois, USA
A Weekend Of Blues
Jun-17-2022 – Jun-19-2022
Hemlock , New York, USA
Alpine Country Blues Festival
Jun-17-2022 – Jun-18-2022
Alpine, Arizona, USA
|We continue to stay optimistic! |
|We are thinking of you and wishing you good health!|
RBA Publishing/Blues Festival Guide
P.O. Box 920, Arcata, CA 95518
We welcome e-Guide suggestions and questions. You can reach our E-Guide editor, Michele Lundeen (pictured here) via EMAIL.
Michele is also a singer, songwriter, performer and bandleader based in the San Diego County, California area and nicknamed the "Queen of Steam" for her high energy and passionate style.
RBA Publishing, Inc. in business since 1993, is a boutique, blues-specific PR and marketing firm based on the West Coast. We help musicians, festivals, labels and music-related brands. Our digital campaigns target fans, industry and influencers. We are masterful at email marketing, social media, fan acquisition and long-term marketing plans. Our media services are supported by people who understand and love the blues genre. Publishers of annual the Blues Festival Guide magazine, our top-ranking website, and e-Guide newsletter with approx. 30,000 weekly subscribers, we have been blues industry leaders for over 18 years. Please contact us at 707-630 3304 or EMAIL to find out how we can help you!
Information both editorial and advertising in the Blues Festival E-Guide is believed to be correct but not guaranteed. Double check info carefully before you attend any event or send money for anything. We do not do CD/DVD reviews nor write the news... we just share and report it.