Friday, April 18, 2014

Clarksdale & Juke Joint Festival 2014



One fantastic event held every year in Clarksdale, MS - this is the 11th Anniversary

The main event is Saturday, but there are events going on from Thursday through Sunday

The entire town gets involved in this event.  Storefronts that might be empty throughout the rest of the year are occupied with goods or music...

Ah the music...every three feet there is music...During the day, the music is all free...inside and out...planned stages, buskers...and games and fun for the entire family.

At night, some 19 venues all offered music and one wristband would get you into every single one...and the cost, a tiny $15 in advance and $20 at the door...

Here are a few of the pictures I took during the day on Saturday

Date for next year is Saturday April 11...So from the 9th through the 12th, Clarksdale will, once again, be covered in music and fun...make your plans, hotel rooms go very fast.

 My Homebase for the day
thanks to Arthur & Carol Crivaro


Shannon Mc Nally



Tyannosaurus Chicken

 All sorts of things on sale
One man's trash...

 Mississippi Mud
Just add water!

 Deak Harp's Joint...
Mississippi Saxophones!

 Seriously, what other festival
Gives you PIG RACES!

 And around the turn they come...

Cheer them on!

 Jeff Jensen

 Mick Kolassa

 Jensen, Eric Hughes & Kolassa
These three just killed it!


 And then Watermelon Slim joined in

 From Canada, Big Dave McLean
Multiple Juno & Maple Blues Award Nominee

 Slim joined in with Dave for a few numbers

 Never seen Watermelon Slim in performance?
WHY NOT????

Dickie James & The Blue Flames played
and then Watermelon joined them to end the evening...

All in all, a perfect day of music, fun and friends....

Monday, April 14, 2014

04/14/14 Kim Simmonds Sat On The Couch


Kim Simmonds is the force behind Savoy Brown.

Next year marks his 50th in the music industry.

Savoy Brown has a new album Going To The Delta.

04/14/14 COUCH KID NEW MUSIC - Franc Robert "Ride The Iron Road"


Franc Robert originally sat on the Couch back in September of 2012.

He has a new album entitled Ride The Iron Road and he returns to share it with us and talk about the recording, a solo effort after his last two band albums. 


04/14/14 Justin Johnson Sat On The Couch


Justin Johnson called in from Australia where he is on a long tour.

Justin has been hailed by Guitar World as a must see act and dubbed “The Wizard” for his mastery of stringed instruments.

He has earned many accolades including a 1st place win in the Slidestock International Slide Guitar Competition.

04/14/14 Terry Quiett Sat On The Couch


Terry Quiett has released ten albums since 1999 proving his staying power, while allowing him to develop his exceptional talents as a singer, songwriter and virtuoso instrumentalist in preparation for “overnight success” he has earned and deserves.

Terry and I talked about his life and how his career developed from playing electric guitar to acoustic and then back and why it occurred and how it had to occur for him to be where he is today.

04/14/14 Couch Kid Gracie Curran Makes An Announcement


Couch Kids have the opportunity to come back and share their new music - COUCH KID NEW MUSIC Segment - and also make important announcemnets at the top of the show. Tonight, Gracie Curran returned to talk about her crowd-funding for her second album and her upcoming tour.


Monday, April 7, 2014

04/07/14 COUCH KID NEW MUSIC - Harpdog Brown "What It Is"


Harpdog Brown originally Sat On The Couch back on November 12, 2012 and he returned tonight to share his new album What it Is.

Dog and I had a couple of technical glitches, but they have been edited out of the show.

Dog talked about recording the album and his upcoming tour in Canada. Of course we shared songs from the album.

04/07/14 COUCH KID NEW MUSIC - Ron Tanski "Never Pet A Burning Dog"


Ron Tanski originally Sat on The Couch back on May 21, 2012 and on this night he returned to The Couch to share his latest album, Never Pet A Burning Dog.

Ron, Chefjimi and I chatted about the album, how the title song came about and Ron's past two years of life.

We also shared a bunch of songs from the album.

04/07/14 Blues411 Report Report


First Monday of the month and Chefjimi came in for a short segment to talk about upcoming Blues festivals, we chatted about Baker's Dozen and also, Jimi gave his take on the BB King controversy that raised its ugly head this past week.

He then hung out for the Ron Tanski segment.

04/07/14 Art Crivaro & Sean "Bad" Apple Talk Juke Joint Festival


Sean "Bad" Apple and Bluesberry Cafe Owner, Arthur Crivaro joined me to talk about the 2014 Clarksdale Juke Joint Festival which is on April 10, 11 and 12.

We also heard two songs from Sean's band The All Night Long Blues Band.

04/07/14 Watermelon Slim Sat On The Couch


Bill "Watermelon Slim" Holmans.

What can you say about this man? Bonnie Raitt probably said it best when at a 2009 concert she called Slim a "living blues legend".

Born in Boston, Slim was raised in North Carolina listening to the housekeeper sing John Lee Hooker songs.

Thursday, April 3, 2014

My Greatest Accomplishment!

First, Happy Anniversary yesterday to my Brother Richard and his bride Cindy!


With respect to September 5, 2009, the day I married the wonderful Nancy, today I celebrate the day I became a DAD!

A couple of years ago, on this day, I wrote the following:

Be safe in your life
Be enveloped by your passions
Continue to grow into a sensitive, strong man
Take the opportunity to explore life

I Love You
Seven years ago, when Matt turned 20, I composed the following. I repeat it today for those who might never have read it.

I have added some newer photos at the end. The header is intact from when he was 20.

Monday, March 31, 2014

03/31/14 COUCH KID NEW MUSIC - Tweed Funk "First Name Lucky"


Tweed Funk originally visited while at the IBC in 2012. We had such a blast then, they came back for a full Sit down in April of 2012.

Since then, they have come by during the IBC each year and this past January we made plans for the guys to bring the new album to Music On the Couch.

03/31/14 Polly O'Keary Sat On The Couch


Polly O'Keary began playing music in bars in Mexico at 16, and after a early rock career that included a record deal, she fell in love with blues at 28.

She was first named Washington Blues Society Female Vocalist of the Year in 2004, and has won it twice more since then.

Her first and second albums were well-reviewed, and the second was named Album of the Year by the WBS, and Polly was named Songwriter of the Year.

03/31/14 Ken "Sugar Brown" Kawashima Sat On The Couch


Ken "Sugar Brown" Kawashima was born in Bowling Green Ohio. His attachment to the Blues came while he studied at the University of Chicago by day and prowled the blues clubs at night, backing artists such as Taildragger and "Big Eyes" Smith.

He now lives in Toronto, and his latest album is entitled Sugar Browns Sad Day.

How did the blues find this classically trained pianist...as Sugar says "It was a moment..."

03/31/14 Jj Thames Sat On The Couch


Jj Thames was raised in a blue-collar family.

She began performing at the tender age of 9 years old, and became a blues- shouting banshee by the time she was just 18 years old.

How did that transition come about?

Monday, March 24, 2014

03/24/14 COUCH KID NEW MUSIC - James Armstrong "Guitar Angels"


James Armstrong originally Sat On The Couch back in 2012 and he returns with his new album, Guitar Angels which dropped on February 18th.

James and I talked about his last two years, playing shows and working on the new album after the success of Blues At The Border, his last release.

03/24/14 Root Doctor Featuring Freddie Cunningham Sat On the Couch


Root Doctor Featuring Freddie Cunningham have established themselves with their engaging live shows.

They have been creating music together since the 80's through some changing rosters that have included the likes of Greg Nagy and Tom Holland and they continue to thrive.

Their new album is entitled New Attitude and I sat with Freddie, keyboardist Mike Skory, bassist James Williams and guitarist Bill Malone (drummer Bob Gardner was not on the call).

03/24/14 GB Roots Sat On The Couch


GB Roots is the powerful collaboration of guitarist/banjo player Dave Barber, and female bassist Kirby Green.

Dave and Kirby began collaborating while studying music at Grant MacEwan University in Edmonton, AB.

For the past few years they've been songwriting, recording and performing as backups for others and also as GB Roots throughout Canada.

03/24/14 Laith Al-Saadi Sat On The Couch


Laith Al-Saadi began singing at age 4 and began playing guitar at 13.

At 15 years old Al- Saadi formed his first blues band, Blue Vinyl. By the time he was 18 years old they had opened for Blues greats like Buddy Guy, Luther Allison, Son Seals, and Taj Mahal and toured the Netherlands.

During his college years, Al-Saadi freelanced with many of Detroit's greats like Thornetta Davis, Jocelyn B and The Reefermen.