Sunday July 2nd
2pm- Guitarman Blues and One Band
Robney Evans know as Guitar Man Blues was born and raised in Gary, Indiana. Started playing guitar at a very young age inspired by his dad the late Leon (Blow Joe) Evans a well known saxophonist and his mentor Donald Kinsey (blues guitarist). He is a up and coming blues guitarist trying to make his mark on the blues scene. Over the years his love for music prompted him to create his own group "Guitar Man Blues and One Band" that consist of 5 dynamic musicians.
Mike Shell Jr. (Drummer/Percussionist)
Kenyatta (Lead/Rythm Guitar and Lead/Background vocals)
Floyd Williams (Base Guitar and Background vocals)
Jeffrey Roche (Saxophone and Background vocals)
Andrew (Wolf) Ezel (Keyboards and Lead/Background vocals)
4:30pm - Omar Coleman Band
Born & Raised on the Westside of Chicago, Omar Coleman is a blues vocalist and self-taught harmonica player. He is nominated for Most Outstanding Musician – Harmonica 2015 by Living Blues Magazine. His soulful vocals and fiery harmonica skills have entertained audiences from Chicago to San Francisco to France to Brazil and beyond.
In 2015 Omar made his debut on Delmark Records with his album “Born & Raised”. This was Omar’s 3rd studio release. The album is currently nominated for Album of the Year 2015 by Living Blues Magazine. Delmark must know a good thing when they see it because they quickly followed Born & Raised with a live album titled “Omar Coleman Live” released on Delmark Records in 2016.
His band performs regularly at:
Buddy Guy’s Legends
House of Blues
Shaw’s Crab House
Nick’s Beer Garden
Has performed at the following festivals:
San Francisco Blues Festival
Chicago Blues Festival
Muddy Waters Festival of Westmont
Hotlicks Blues Festival
St Louis Blues Festival
Bean Blossom Blues Festival
King Biscuit Blues Festival
Performed on the 1st Annual Blues Cruise in 2014
6:00 Joanna Connor- Queen of the Blues Rock Guitar
Joanna got her first guitar at age seven. When she was 16, she began singing in Worcester-area bands, and when she was 22, she moved to Chicago. Soon after her arrival in 1984, she began sitting in with Chicago regulars like James Cotton, Junior Wells, Buddy Guy and A.C. Reed. She hooked up with Johnny Littlejohn's group for a short time before being asked by Dion Payton to join his 43rd Street Blues Band. She performed with Payton at the 1987 Chicago Blues Festival. Later that year, she was ready to put her own band together.
Her 1989 debut for the Blind Pig label, Believe It!, got her out of Chicago clubs and into clubs and festivals around the U.S., Canada and Europe. Her other albums include 1992's Fight for Blind Pig (the title track a Luther Allison tune), Living on the Road (1993) and Rock and Roll Gypsy (1995), the latter two for the Ruf Records label. Slidetime on Blind Pig followed in 1998 and Nothing But the Blues, a live recording of a 1999 show in Germany, appeared on the German Inakustik label in 2001. Connor left Blind Pig and signed to small indie label M.C. in 2002. Her first release for her new label, The Joanna Connor Band, finds Connor expanding her sound a bit in an attempt to reach a more mainstream audience.
Joanna has blossomed into a gifted blues songwriter. Her songwriting talents, strongly influenced by greats like Luther Allison, will insure that she stays in the blues spotlight for years to come.
7:30- Jimmy Nick and Don't Tell Mama
Jimmy Nick is an old fashioned, guitar-slinging blues prodigy who was developing his chops in famous Chicago clubs when he was only sixteen. His experience playing at these Chicago venues – Buddy Guy’s Legends, The Kingston Mines, Rosa’s Lounge, and B.L.U.E.S. on Halstead – combined with his boundless energy and stage presence, has established him as a force that is taking the Chicago club and blues scene by storm!
Jimmy's recent awards...
WINNER- Chicago Blues, Guitar Slinger Challenge (2013)
WINNER, Illinois Blues Challenge (2012)
WINNER, Illinois Blues Challenge (2012)
*SEMI-FINALIST, International Blues Challenge – Memphis, TN (2013)
*WINNER Crossroads Blues Society Challenge (2014)
Over the last year Jimmy has recorded his first live album for a full house at The Raue Center for the Performing Arts, performed over 200 shows*, advanced to the semifinals at the International Blues Challenge in Memphis, as well as headlined at Buddy Guy’s Legends, and B.L.U.E.S on Halstead. Most recently, he was featured on the WGN Morning News. In addition, Jimmy has opened for the legendary Eddie Shaw, Bobby Rush, Toronzo Canon, Dick Dale, The Mike Wheeler Band and performed at SXSW. Jimmy has sold over 1,500 copies of his 3rd studio album –Rare Breed, which features Eddie Shaw performing with Jimmy on his original blues tune “Greedy Man”.
Jimmy Nick has also shared the stage with John Mayall, Ted Nugent,Samantha Fish, Pat Travers, Savoy Brown, Los Lonely Boys, Gov’t Mule, Kenny Wayne Shepard and more. Jimmy Nick & Don’t Tell Mama continue to be one of the most requested and hard working bands in the Chicagoland area.
Today Jimmy’s mission is to expose the next generation to the blues. Driven by his motown-tight band, Don’t Tell Mama, featuring saxophone, bass, and drums Jimmy excites crowds with his electrifying guitar work, fresh harp, clever lyrics and animated stage theatrics. His high energy blues and rock-n-roll captivate audiences, and forge instant fans.
9:00pm- Bobby Rush- Headliner
During the mid-1950s, Rush relocated to Chicago to pursue his musical career and make a better life for himself. It was there that he started to work with Earl Hooker, Luther Allison, and Freddie King. sat in with many of his musical heroes, such as Howlin’ Wolf, Muddy Waters, Jimmy Reed, Willie Dixon,and Little Walter. Rush eventually began leading his own band in the 1960s. He also started to craft his own distinct style of funky blues, and recorded a succession of singles for a various small labels. It wasn’t until the early 1970’s that Rush finally scored a hit with “Chicken Heads.” More recordings followed, including an album for Kenny Gamble and Leon Huff’s Philadelphia International Label. Rush relocated one final time to Jackson, Mississippi in the early 1980s. He was tired of the cold up north, and he realized that setting up his base of operations directly in the center of the South would make it easier to perform in nearby cities on weekends. More indie label recordings followed. Songs like “Sue, A Man Can Give (But He Sure Can’t Take It),” “What’s Good For The Goose Is Good For The Gander Too,” and” I Ain’t Studdin’ You” became regional jukebox favorites in juke joints throughout the region, and many of those songs are still fan favorites that are an integral part of his live repertoire.
Since 2003, Rush has self-released the majority of his work (including the critically acclaimed Folk Funk album) on his Deep Rush label, but recently, he came to the realization that having a bigger record company behind him would be beneficial. “I outgrew myself,” said Rush. “I need someone to help in doing the things I can’t do. When you are wearing all the hats, you can’t be everywhere at once.”
Enter esteemed producer and two-time Grammy winner Scott Billington, Rounder Records’ longtime VP of A&R. Billington first met Rush at a Recording Academy meeting 25 years ago, and they became fast friends. He has wanted to work with Rush ever since. “He is the most vital bluesman of his generation,” said Billington. He continues, “There are many people who still don’t know Bobby Rush, even though he is a hero in the parallel universe of the Chitlin’ Circuit—fans stop him on the street in Memphis and Helena and Little Rock.”
Porcupine Meat will not only please Rush’s older fans, but is likely to win over many new ones. Billington reflects, “We wanted to come up with something fresh, while staying 100% true to Bobby.”
The album was recorded in New Orleans, and Rush was pleased and proud to be given the opportunity to make an album in his home state for the very first time. His impassioned vocals and in-the-pocket harmonica playing are among the best performances of his career. Unlike most of his recent releases, these sessions only feature real instruments and no synthesizers. All of the rhythm tracks were cut live in the studio, often edited down from jams that on several occasions ran close to ten minutes.
For the project, Billington assembled some of the best Louisiana musicians, including Shane Theriot, David Torkanowsky, Jeffrey “Jellybean” Alexander, Kirk Joseph, Cornell Williams, and others. Rush brought along his old friend and longtime collaborator, guitarist Vasti Jackson, who worked with Bobby and Scott on getting the songs ready for the studio. Guitar greats Dave Alvin, Keb’ Mo’, and Joe Bonamassa all make guest appearances on the album.
Rush has always been a prolific and clever songwriter. The songs he penned for Porcupine Meat such as “Dress Too Short,” “I Don’t Want Nobody Hanging Around,” “Me, Myself And I,” “Nighttime Gardener,” “It’s Your Move,” and the title selection, all equal or rival his best material. “Funk o’ de Funk” delivers exactly what the title suggests and what Rush has always done the best, which is putting the funk into the blues. While “Got Me Accused” is inspired by events from Rush’s own life, the lyrics tell an all-too-familiar tale about the rampant racial injustice that afflicts our society. Producer Billington and his wife Johnette Downing (the well known New Orleans songwriter and children’s musician) co-wrote a couple of fine selections, “Catfish Stew” and “Snake In The Grass.”
Bobby Rush is the greatest bluesman currently performing. Porcupine Meat is a testament to his brilliance, which presents him at his very best, and doesn’t try to be anything that he is not. “I just try to record good music and stories,” he humbly states. With this recording, he has more than accomplished his goal, and has produced one of the finest contemporary blues albums in recent times.