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A weekly digest of blues news
 
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NOV 22–DEC19 2019
ONLINE CALENDAR  |  FESTIVALS
FORWARD TO A FELLOW BLUES LOVER FORWARD TO A FELLOW BLUES LOVER
THINKING OUT LOUD 
LEND A HAND. West Side blues singer Mzz Reese has been diagnosed with lung cancer and needs a little help from her friends while she goes through treatment and tries to get back on her feet. Although she does have medical insurance, it never seems to cover all the expenses that pile up. 
TWO WAYS TO HELP
  • Contribute to the GoFundMe page ($7000 goal)
  • Attend the Benefit Show at The Water Hole on Saturday, Dec. 21 (8pm–1am). There will be a $10 donation and music by Reese's Pieces and guests. The Water Hole has free parking, the kitchen will be open and there will be a 50/50 raffle.
Mzz Reese photo © Chicago Blues News/Karen Murphy

JOIN THE PARTY. Remember that the benefit for Carl Weathersby is this Sunday at Rosa's Lounge. No tickets left, but for just $10 you can "virtually" be there. Tune in Sunday, Nov 24 @ 7-10pm CST. All proceeds go to Carl.
REGISTER RIGHT HERE:
iframe.dacast.com/b/141744/c/512200

OTHER WAYS TO HELP
DONATE to the GoFundMe page
BUY Carl's August 2019 release, Live at Rosa's Lounge.

CLOSING TIME. The Exhibition Closing and Award Ceremony for the Chicago Jazz & Blues: A Photographer's View 2019  exhibition will be held Friday, Dec. 6 (6–8pm). The public is invited to attend. LEARN MORE/RSVP HERE

BONNIE'S BACK. Austin City Limits (ACL), in partnership with the Americana Music Assn., is broadcasting performance highlights from the 18th Annual Americana Honors on Saturday, Nov. 23 at 8pm CT/9m ET on PBS (check local listings for times). Or, you can stream the show beginning Sunday, November 24 @ 9am CT / 10am ET on PBS: Austin City Limits. Here's the ones I am most interested in:

Bonnie Raitt & John Prine Angel From Montgomery
Mavis Staples | Change

Rhiannon Giddens with Francesco Turrisi | Wayfaring Stranger

REST IN PEACE

Wee Willie Walker
12.23.41–11.19.19

Wee Willie Walker died in his sleep at his St. Paul, MN, apartment on Tuesday, Nov. 19, 2019, of undisclosed causes. Walker was a much beloved singer among those who knew him, but has been described as one of the most underrated soul blues singers of our time. He was 77.
READ THE  STARTRIBUNE ARTICLE

OUR PHOTOS OF MR. WALKER


HAVE A LISTEN
A Change Is Gonna Come (with Randy Oxford's All Stars Band Slam)

Little Red Rooster (with Anthony Paule)

WITH TERRI ODABI
Lovey Dovey

When Something Is Wrong With My Baby
AWARDS TIME
NOT THE GRAMMYS–AGAIN
Since I have probably whined enough about the Grammys for two lifetimes, I almost have no more to whine about this year. You know the problems.

So...putting my Pollyanna hat on, let me just say that the 62nd GRAMMY Awards will air Sunday, Jan. 26 on CBS. There are 84 categories and I have five blues-ish awards to monitor and two actual blues categories. You know the rest of what I am thinking...or you should if you read this newsletter regularly.

THE REAL DEAL
Here are the two (count 'em) categories for blues:

Best Traditional Blues Album

  • KINGFISH | Christone "Kingfish" Ingram
     
  • TALL, DARK & HANDSOME | Delbert McClinton & Self-Made Men
     
  • SITTING ON TOP OF THE BLUES | Bobby Rush
     
  • BABY, PLEASE COME HOME | Jimmie Vaughan
     
  • SPECTACULAR CLASS | Jontavious Willis
Kingfish Ingram photo @ Chicago Blues News/Karen Murphy

Best Contemporary Blues Album

  • THIS LAND | Gary Clark Jr.
     
  • VENOM & FAITH | Larkin Poe
     
  • BRIGHTER DAYS | Robert Randolph & The Family Band
     
  • SOMEBODY SAVE ME | Sugaray Rayford
     
  • KEEP ON | Southern Avenue
Tierinii Jackson (Southern Avenue) photo © Chicago Blues News/Karen Murphy
 
And the Fantastic Negrito Award goes to...(drumroll, please)...Larkin Poe. (Sorry, my Pollyanna hat fell off).
 
JUST BLUES-ISH
  • Gary Clark Jr. is up for Best Music Video for This Land. Note that Billy Ray Cyrus and Lil Nas X are also up for an award in this category so.... 
  • Rhiannon Giddens with Francesco Turrisi are nominated for I'm On My Way in the Best American Roots Performance category.
  • Keb' Mo' is nominated for Best Americana Album for Oklahoma.
  • Rebirth Brass Band is nominated for Best Regional Roots Music Album for Recorded Live at the 2019 New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival.
  • Steve Greenberg is up for an award for Best Album Notes for Stax '68: A Memphis Story.
THE COMPLETE LIST

CANADA CALLING
THE MAPLE BLUES AWARDS
Harpdog Brown, who just did two shows in the Chicago area recently, is up for three awards in the Canadian version of the Blues Music Awards: Male Vocalist of the Year, Recording/Producer of the Year for Love & Money, and Harmonica Player (which he has already won three times). I would vote for him if I could. The awards will be held Feb. 3, 2020, at Koerner Hall in Toronto. LEARN MORE

CRABBY SIDE NOTE: In what universe does it make sense for Larkin Poe to be up against Buddy Guy and Mavis Staples for the B.B. King International Artist of the Year? If only someone would put the talented Poe(s) in a category that makes sense then I could put my Pollyanna hat back on.
Watch for the next chicagoBLUESnews:  
DEC 20–JAN2
TICKET GIVEAWAYS
JUST FOLLOW THE RULES
You MUST be a subscriber of Chicago Blues News to enter (enter ONCE A DAY until the deadline).

THE EMAIL SUBJECT LINE
Use the EXACT subject line indicated​

BODY OF EMAIL
ONLY your name, phone number and email address.

Drawings will be the DAY AFTER the entry deadlines. 
Winners will have 24 hours to respond before another winner is chosen.
Please do not enter if you know you cannot attend.
WIN TWO TICKETS TO SEE BUDDY

Yes, it's true! We have two tickets to giveaway for each of the THURSDAY Buddy in Residence shows! Talk about starting out 2020 right!
NOTE: You can only win tickets to ONE of the FOUR shows.

THURS, JAN 2 | Bobby Rush
DEADLINE TO ENTER

Friday, Dec. 13 @ midnight

ENTER NOW

THURS, JAN 9 | Jamiah Rogers
DEADLINE TO ENTER
Friday, Dec. 20 @ midnight

ENTER NOW

THURS, JAN 16 | Larry McCray
DEADLINE TO ENTER
Friday, Dec. 27 @ midnight

ENTER NOW

THURS, JAN 23 | Lil' Ed and the Blues Imperials
DEADLINE TO ENTER
Friday, Jan. 3 @ midnight

ENTER NOW

GET IN THE MOOD

Here are photos from 2019:
JAN 3 with Bobby Rush

JAN 18 with Kingfish

JAN 24 with Corey Dennison


PHOTO: Kingfish (r) with Buddy Guy  © Chicago Blues News/Karen Murphy
THE CLOCK IS TICKING...

WIN TWO TICKETS!
DEADLINE TO ENTER  FRI, DEC 6 @ midnight

12.27.19 @ City Winery
SHEMEKIA COPELAND
OPENING ACT: Kevin Burt

Shemekia is back at City Winery for what has become a yearly holiday season appearance. This time, she is joined by the wonderful Kevin Burt. It is certain to be a great show. Baby, don't you wanna go?
LEARN MORE

SUBJECT LINE (DO NOT CHANGE or your entry will be voided):
I WANT TO CELEBRATE WITH SHEMEKIA

ENTER NOW
'TIS THE SEASON
First, we've got a very random, very small holiday gift guide in case you are short on imagination when you go gift shopping. Then, as you can see below, we've got a few great recordings to set the mood.
ENJOY!
Putamayo PresentsBlues Christmas
RELEASE DATE:  11.29.19 (Putamayo)
10 classics from stars such as Kenny Neal, Anson Funderburgh, Paul Oscher and more

Mindi Abair & The Boneshakers | All I Got For Christmas Is The Blues
RELEASE DATE:  10.26.18 (Pretty Good for a Girl)
Four originals and five Christmas classics

Joel Paterson Hi-Fi Christmas Guitar
RELEASE DATE:  10.26.18 ( Bloodshot Records)
14 tracks from one of Chicago's best

JD McPherson | Socks
RELEASE DATE:  11.2.18 (New West Records)
11 originals from the blues-ish McPherson and friends

Various Artists | Christmas Blues
RELEASE DATE:  12.28.1999 (Stony Plain Music)
14 songs from a variety of artists, including Duke Robillard, Maria Muldaur and Billy Boy Arnold

Various ArtistsDig That Crazy Santa Claus – Classic Christmas Cuts, 1953-56
RELEASE DATE:  10.20.17 (Contrast Records)
26 tracks  from mid-century blues and rhythm&blues performers

Various Artists | Blues Christmas
RELEASE DATE:  10.20.17 (Cleopatra) 
18 songs from everyone from Leslie West, Steve Cropper and Foghat to Popa Chubby, Joe Louis Walker and Larry McCray

Alligator Records also has released two Christmas CDs:
Genuine Houserockin' Christmas (16 tracks released in 2000) and The Alligator Records Christmas Collection (14 tracks released in 1992).

You can find all of these CDs (and a lot more) on Amazon or probably wherever you like to buy your music.
GET OUT
Here's a few ideas to go hear live music. If you think these are your only options to hear live blues in Chicago, you need to get out more often.

GET THE ENTIRE LIST:  ONLINE CALENDAR

Know about a show I don't? Tell Me About It...please.
ONE MORE THING: Always call before you go if you have your heart set on a particular show...things can change.
FRI, NOV 22
BIRTHDAY WEEKEND
Jimmy Johnson

BLUES
(also on Saturday)

SAT, NOV 23
Nora Jean Bruso,
Shawn Holt & The Teardrops

Kingston Mines

SUN, NOV 24
Dave Weld and
the Imperial Flames

Legends

MON, NOV 25
BLUE MONDAY SERIES
Smiley Tillmon Band
with Kate Moss

SPACE, Evanston

TUES, NOV 26
Pete Galanis and Friends
Rosa's Lounge

WED, NOV 27
Tom Holland
Smoke Daddy Wrigleyville

THURS, NOV 28
BE THANKFUL
FOR SOMETHING


FRI, NOV 29
Samantha Fish, Nicholas David
Thalia Hall

SAT, NOV 30
Cash Box Kings
Legends

Toronzo Cannon
Untitled

SUN, DEC 1
Jimmy Johnson 
Lagunitas Tap Room (420pm)

MON, DEC 2
BLUE MONDAYS SERIES
Jimmy Burns

SPACE, Evanston

TUES, DEC 3
BLUESDAY TUESDAY with
Tom Marker and Altered Five Blues Band

FitzGerald's, Berwyn

WED, DEC 4
The Jimmys
Legends

Nick Moss
Smoke Daddy
THURS, DEC 5
Gerry Hundt's One Man Band
Taylor St. Tap

FRI, DEC 6
Elmore James Jr. and the Broomdusters
The Water Hole

SAT, DEC 7
Ivy Ford Band
Potato Creek Johnny's
Glenview

SUN, DEC 8
James Blood Ulmer
The Promontory

MON, DEC 9
The Diamond Jim Greene Trio
Ward 8, Evanston

TUES, DEC 10
Nicky T and the Snake Charmers
Legends

WED, DEC 11
JW Williams Blues Band
with Laretha Weathersby

Blue Chicago

THURS, DEC 12
Matt Hendricks
The Hideout

FRI, DEC 13
Paul Kaye and the Blues Cartel
The Water Hole

SAT, DEC 14
Billy Branch and
the Sons of Blues,
Mojo Morganfield

Legends

SUN, DEC 15
BLUES-ISH: Marcus King Band
Thalia Hall

MON, DEC 16
THE MONDAY BLUES
John Primer & The Real Deal Blues Band

Untitled

TUES, DEC 17
Blue Coast Band
Legends

WED, DEC 18
BLUES JAM
Low-reen and the Maxwell St.
Blues Band

The Water Hole

THURS, DEC 19
Chicago Blues Supersession 
Holiday Show (730pm)

Hey Nonny, Arlington Heights
OUT AND ABOUT

NOV 7 @ Legends
Whitey Johnson
I will admit to a huge hole in my musical knowledge: Before going to this show, I did not know who Whitey Johnson (aka Gary Nicholson) was. Now I do–and I would never miss another show he does anywhere I might be. He is a wonderfully entertaining and immensely talented performer who also happens to have written or co-written many of the songs I (and probably you) love. I learned from his website that "his name appears on 600-some recorded songs spanning multiple genres." Wow. By the way, for this show, he was joined by three of Chicago's finest: John Kattke (keys), Marty Binder (drums) and Nick Fane (bass).
TAKE A LOOK TO BE AMAZED


THE PHOTOS
OUT AND ABOUT

NOV 9 @ Untitled
The Jimmys
I love The Jimmys and was thrilled to see that they had booked two upcoming dates in Chicago so I didn't have to venture to New Glarus to see them...not that it is a problem to go to the home of Spotted Cow. But, Untitled is a lot closer to home...it just also is a lot different from the clubs I am used to. Burlesque dancers between sets don't usually appear during breaks at Legends or The Water Hole. And I don't think that bottle service is available at those clubs, either, but maybe I just never got the right menu. In any case, if you have seen The Jimmys, you know we had a great time. 
SIDE NOTE: I cannot be there, but the good news is that The Jimmys will be back in town on DEC 4 at Legends. You should definitely be there.


THE PHOTOS

Going to a jam is always fun, mostly because you just never really know what will happen.... So, the NOV 10 Pro Jam at Reggie's was exactly what I expected, given the pros on the stage–Oscar Wilson was the featured guest, backed by Billy Flynn (guitar), Dave Katzman (guitar), Melvin Smith (bass), Ronnie Hicks (keys) and David Sims (drums). Jammers that walked in also included Gerry Hundt and Rick King. They will do it again on SUN, DEC 8, beginning at 7pm and featuring Jon McDonald. 

And weekly The Water Hole jam was also pretty much what I expected: a chaotic, sometimes blues-ish jam in a super-friendly environment. This week, as you can see from the photos, there was even more unexpected merriment in the house. Thankfully, no one tried to play Purple Rain.
SIDE NOTE: Since guitarist Tony Brown left Low-reen and the Maxwell St. Market Blues Band to do his own thing, Low-reen has been inviting her many talented friends to be guest guitarists. On NOV 13, it was Charlie Love. So far, the jam is still on for Thanksgiving Eve, but I'm not sure who the guest guitarist will be. Go and find out.


THE PHOTOGRAPHIC EVIDENCE
JAMMIN' AT REGGIE'S MUSIC JOINT

JAMMIN' AT THE WATER HOLE

 
PLAN AHEAD
DEC 20
A BLUES CHRISTMAS
with Toronzo Cannon, Lil' Ed
Williams, Lynne Jordan and Matthew Skoller

Navy Pier (7-830pm)

DEC 21
BENEFIT FOR MZZ REESE
The Water Hole (8pm–1am)
 
JAN 13, 2020
LOGAN CENTER
SECOND MONDAY BLUES

Deitra Farr and Matthew Skoller
with Billy Branch

Cafe Logan
Logan Center for the Arts

JUNE 5–7
Chicago Blues Festival
Millennium Park
NOV 22
Angela Strehli

NOV 23
Jake La Botz
Dr. Dan Ivankovich (
Chicago Slim)
Mary Lane


NOV 24
Lynn Orman Weiss
Pete Griffith


NOV 25
Jimmy Johnson
Jerry Portnoy


NOV 26
Susan Williams
 
(and the Wright Groove)
Tina Turner
Willie Buck
Bernard Allison


NOV 28
Ori Naftaly

NOV 29
John Mayall
Martin Lang


DEC  1
Oliver C. Brown
DEC 5
Little Richard 
Paul Petraitis
Kim Simmonds


DEC  7
Terrance Chism

DEC  8
Precious J Taylor

DEC  9
Tom Holland

DEC  12
Chris Alexander

DEC  13
Lucky Peterson
Larry Taylor
Lurrie C. Bell


DEC  14
Rosa Enrico Branch
(wife of Billy)

DEC  15
Nick Moss

DEC  16
Aaron Moreland
Sugar Blue
Robben Ford


DEC  17
Paul Rodgers
I like Mojo Buford, but didn't really mean to give him two birthdates in the last issue (although I do agree with multiple-day celebrations, especially for big events). His birthday is NOV 10, 1929 (not also NOV 12). He left us on Oct. 11, 2011, but he would have been 90 this year. Isn't that cause for a toast?
BELATED WISHES 
If I missed your birthday, more cake for you. Please let me know the date for next year so I can add you to the list. 
NOV 7
Whitey Johnson
(aka Gary Nicholson)
NOV 8
Greg Guy
(son of youknowwho)
BIRTHDAY REMEMBRANCES
NOV 21
Dr. John
Lloyd Glen


NOV 22
Alex Moore

NOV 23
Betty Everett
R.L. Burnside


NOV 25
Eddie Boyd

NOV 27
Jimi Hendrix

NOV 30
Robert Nighthawk
Brownie McGhee


DEC 4
Larry Davis

DEC 5
Sonny Boy Williamson II
  (Alec “Rice” Miller)

DEC  7
Blind John Davis
DEC  8
Jimmy Smith
Gregg Allman


DEC  9
Junior Wells

DEC  10
Guitar Slim

DEC  11
Big Mama Thorton

DEC  12
Joe Williams
Lonesome Sundown


DEC  15
Andrew Odom

DEC  17
James Booker
Paul Butterfield


DEC  18
Pee Wee Crayton
Eddie “Cleanhead” Vinson
Lonnie Brooks


DEC  19
Professor Longhair
WE DO ACCEPT ADVERTISING.
Contact Michael NOW!
You are receiving this blues newsletter because you love the blues and asked to be on the mailing list. If you are no longer interested, you can unsubscribe at any time. Chicago Blues News is written and distributed by Editorial Director Karen Murphy every Thursday, with the exception of previously announced vacation plans. Its content cannot be reproduced in any form without written permission in advance. The weekly deadline to submit information for possible inclusion in the newsletter is Wednesday at Noon.
Copyright © 2019 Chicago Blues News, All rights reserved.
 

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