Saturday, July 26, 2014

My Week As A Tortured Soul Day 9 - Tall City Blues Fest

We hit the road at 1:30am and drove all night, arriving at about 11:15am... LONG A** DRIVE THROUGH TEXAS!

Dick drove the first shift, then I took over until I started to fade and then Dick finished off the trip.

Got here, did my show from the lobby of the Doubletree Hotel and then changed to begin the day as MC of The Tall City Blues Fest Presented by Mazda Midland/Odessa.

My Week As A Tortured Soul Day 8 - Houston Night

After the wonderful morning, we went back to our hosts home and relaxed for a few hours before heading back intoHouston for a performance at The Shakespeare Pub.

Kyle & Tiffany, the owners and Jason the manager treated the band right with some good food before hand and the Houston Blues Society represented well with a nice size crowd.

Thursday, July 24, 2014

My Week As A Tortured Soul Day 8 - Houston Daytime

We woke and drove into the city to the Texas Children's Cancer & Hematology Center to do a show for the patients, their families and staff...whoever was in the waiting area of the Clinical Care Center.

All I can say is my eyes were most most of the time - with joy - watching the kids and adults taking some time away from their issues to enjoy.

I was sitting next to a small boy (maybe 2-3) whose sibling was the patient.  And I was clapping to the music and looked over and this little by was smiling and began to clap... MY HEART MELTED!

My Week As A Tortured Soul Day 7 - Wednesday In Houston

Looooonnnnggggggggg drive to Houston.  Took us 11 hours to get here.

Then Sonny, Dick, Joe and I go to the wrong house and the door is opened by this young girl who looks shocked and fearful of these four road worn guys!

We ask for Boyd and she is clueless and says "wait a minute"  The door closes and a few minutes later mom comes to the door to tell us we are at the right number, but the wrong street!

Thankfully firearms were not involved.  We start to walk down the path and see a guy waving at us from about 4 houses down... Hoping it is Boyd we walk toward him...YES! it is Boyd Bluestein, who along with his bride Pam are hosting a dinner party for us and also allowing the four of us to sleep in their home (Tas had other accommodations so he could be across form the hospital for the next morning).

None of us have ever met, but this is what The Blues are all about!

We go inside to meet everyone there...besides the Bluesteins, Tiffany & Kyle Soltis (owners of Shakespeare's Pub), Valerie & Glyn Westcott (he is now President of the Houston Blues Society), Rich & Lisa & Rich DelGrosso (he, of course, the spectacular Mandolin player, who WILL be taking his long-overdue seat on The Couch in September!) and SURPRISE SURPRISE , Annika Chambers and her friend CC (Conissiah Simon)

.. Annika told Boyd not to tell me she would be here!

What a great night of food and lively chat...By the end of the night I felt like I had known each and every person there for years!

Oh, the food... I mean THE FOOD!  venison sausage, three types, the spicy one was my favorite!  Then spaghetti with venison meat gravy, fried venison back-strap... a wonderful garden salad and an asian salad...garlic bread and for dessert Boyd made a berry and apricot dish covered in pecans!  OH My...we had also brought an assortment of small pastries, little cheesecakes and eclairs and the like..


And I just realized there is not one picture of Rich in the bunch...but in my defense...I don't know if I stopped eating the whole time!
Leaving Mississippi 
Into Arkansas
Seems to be a casino at EVERY river crossing!

The Mighty Mississippi River

Hello Houston!

Would like to see a ballgame here one day!

The Dinner Party At The Bluestein's
The spicy sausage - YUM!

Milder version - still YUM!

Lisa serving it up for Tiffany

Tas, Annika & Kyle

 Pam introducing Joe to one of her pups

Valerie grabbing some salad, while Boyd & Glyn 
solve workd problems!

Sonny... chowing down

 Glyn, Annika & I
Funny we matched colors so well without even knowing!

Pam with all her pups
Treat time!

We all thank Pam & Boyd for their incredible generosity...they even insisted we hang at their home when we got done with the Hospital on Thursday and before the performance at Shakespeare's Pub!

More on those adventures coming up!

My Week As A Tortured Soul Day 6 - Clarksdale, MS

We left Indianola and headed to Clarksdale and arrived at the Riverside Hotel... HISTORIC!

So many people have stayed or visited here from Muddy t Ike Turner (Rocket 88, was penned here), Sam Cooke, The Blind Boys Of Alabama and is the hospital (which it was originally) where Bessie Smith passed after her car accident.

We were given a tour by Z, the granddaughter of the woman who purchased the propert in the 40's...she is third generation owner of the establishment - her father Ratt, who passed last year.

As her father did for years, Z gave us a tour of the rooms and explained who stayed in which room.. so very cool.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

My Week As A Tortured Soul Day 5 - Indianola, MS

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Into the van at about 9:30 and off for the almost 3 hour drive down to Indianola...arriving at The BB King Museum & Delta Interpretive Center

Monday, July 21, 2014

My Week As A Tortured Soul Day 4 - The Day Before The Journey Begins

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So, Sunday.. time to pack and get prepared for the trip..last minute emails for my booking services...finding out a legendary blues club has closed its doors...sad day indeed...

And then some dinner with Tas Cru & His Tortured Souls...

A little Mexican food.  Remember, it is Sunday and many places do not open here in Mississippi on a Sunday

Sunday, July 20, 2014

My Week As A Tortured Soul Day 3 - Oxford Blues Festival Day 3

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Three letters for three days of sensational music...incredible people and tons of smiles.

Saturday, July 19, 2014

My Week As A Tortured Soul Day 2 - Oxford Blues Fest Day 2

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SO, the rain forced Day 2 of the Oxford Blues Fest inside and the cool owners of The Corner Bar (Hudson & His Partner...forgot his dang name!) were cool enough to let the Fest use their bar.

Deal was, the music had to stop by 9:30pm, because they had an EDM (electronic dance music) DJ coming in for the younger crowd...but things don't always end up as do they???

Friday, July 18, 2014

My Week As A Tortured Soul Day 1 - Oxford Blues Festival Day 1

PLEASE NOTE: If you want to use any of these...PLEASE ASK FIRST.  I did not add copyrights to each one.  I will also share the high resolution versions if you send an email to

Day one of this adventure was opening night of the OXFORD BLUES FESTIVAL

Mother Nature spit on us on and off throughout the evening, but nothing horrible.

Opening night was THE JEFF JENSEN BAND, Bill Ruffino on bass, Robinson H. Bridgeford on drums and Jeff Jensen on guitar and vocals.

Monday, July 14, 2014

07/14/14 COUCH KID NEW MUSIC Michael Packer "I Am The Blues Vol. 2"

Michael came back to talk about the second volume of his I Am The Blues album.

We also talked about the other parts of his live both musical and personal.

07/14/14 WORLD PREMIER - Peter Novelli "St Amant Sessions"

Peter Novelli returned with pre-mastered music from his upcoming album The St Amant Sessions.

 We talked about the album, and Peter's current tour and what he looks forward to in 2014.

07/14/14 Carolyn Fe Sat on The Couch

Carolyn Fe was born in Quezon City, Philippines.

Her band is called Carolyn Fe Blues Collective and they have been recognized with nominations for their work over the years and were the winners of the 2012 Quebec's Lys Blues Best Blues and Associated Styles Album for Original Sin.

Their latest album is entitled Taboo.

Carolyn joined me to discuss her many talents besides vocals, the formation of the Blues Collective and where she hopes this road is taking her.

07/14/14 Bob Eike Sat On The Couch

Bob Eike grew up in Texas and is a self-taught guitar player.

Throughout his youth, he had a passion for the Blues and Americana music.

Bob just released happy little songs about futility and despair and he joined me to talk about his career, why he stopped playing for years, what got him back to playing and much more.

Of course we checked out songs from the album.

07/14/14 Mick Kolassa Talks About The Oxford Blues Festival

An update on the Oxford Blues Festival which takes place on July 17, 18 and 19...

Monday, July 7, 2014

07/07/14 COUCH KID NEW MUSIC Too Slim & the Taildraggers "Anthology"

Tim Langford, Too Slim, originally sat on The Couch back in August of 2013 and tonight he came by to back to talk about the new release, Anthology, a collection of 34 songs that spans the 28 years of the band.

3 of the songs are brand new releases; 2 were written with Tom Hambridge and one written with Tom and Jim Suhler.

We talked about the last year for the band and where they are heading in the coming months while we listened to tracks from this 2 disc collection.

07/07/14 The Cazanovas Sat On The Couch

The Cazanovas come from Atlanta, Georgia and bring their own incomparable "Kick Ass Blues" for each and every show, melding timeless blues style that every audience relates to with a fresh energy that keeps them hungry for more.

The band is Maurice (Reece) Nazzaro on Harp & Vocals, Danny Vinson on Guitar, Theron Peterson on Drums and Jacob Holliday on bass.

0707/14 Blues 411 Report With Chefjimi Patricola

Chefjimi Patricola came by with his July Blues411 Report and, as always, the subjects were varied including The PA Blues Festival, and his Baker's Dozen for this week.

07/07/14 Oxford Blues Fest Preview

The Oxford Blues Fest takes place on July 17, 18 and 19.

Darryl Parker came by to talk about how the festival came to be and the acts that will grace their stage for the 5th Annual addition of the "Only Festival Held In The Shade" on the grounds of Old Miss

07/07/14 Steve Hill Sat On The Couch

In 2012 Steve Hill released Solo Recordings – Volume 1, which won Best Self-Produced CD at the IBC, 5 trophies at the 11th annual Lys Blues gala – including Blues Album of the Year – and a Juno nomination for Blues Album of the Year.

He just released Solo Recordings - Volume 2 and joined me to talk about his life and career and the many twists his music has taken along the way.

We played some of the tunes on Volume 2 during our chat.