2011 IBC

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In 2011, I presented 3 shows prior to the IBC featuring acts from around the country who had earned their way to Memphis, TN to compete in the 2011 International Blues Challenge.  Then, I was able to arrange for the wining band, The Lionel Young Band to call in from Colorado on Monday evening, after a 20+ hour drive home to talk about experiances.

SHOW # 42 - 01/17/11

VALERIE JUNE

Valerie June is the 2011 Memphis Blues Society representative for the International Blues Challenge (IBC).
A native Tennessean, Valerie has an incredible talent. Singer, guitarist, songwriter, we talked about how her musical journey began and her time being a 'gypsy' on the west coast to her return to Memphis and her eventual win to get to the IBC. We talked about the fan-funding for her upcoming album and how much interest that generated for her. We listened to music from her last album Valerie June & The Tennessee Express, which she made with members of the Old Crow Medicine Show.

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TONI DODD & ERIC DAVIS - Segment Begins At The 49:00 Mark

Toni Dodd and Eric Davis are husband and wife and also band mates. They have been playing together for some 15 years and are this year's representatives from the Santa Clarita Valley Blues Society into the International Blues Challenge (IBC) as they were in 2004. We talked about their last trip to Memphis and how they are more prepared this year then in 2004. We discussed their past and how they have grown as a band. We also got to hear music from their upcoming album Too Much Car For The Road.

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SHOW # 43 - 01/24/11

RON YAROSZ & THE VEHICLE

Ron Yarosz is about to take his second trip to Memphis to compete in the IBC. His first trip was in 2004 and he came away with suggestions and reviews that he plans to use when he and his band, The Vehicle, hit the stages on Beale Street nest week. Ron and I discussed his entry into music, the roads he has taken along the way and how this band is where he wants to be.

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TJ SULLIVAN - Segmnet Begins At The 46:35 Mark

T.J. Sullivan has played with some of the legends in the game including Paul Butterfield and Delaney Bramlett. He has played in bands big and small and now he is a solo act about to wing his way to memphis for the second year in a row. After receiving feedback from last year's appearance as a duo, T.J. has gone out on his own and won the right to come to Memphis. We talked about T.J.'s philosophy on music, his love of the fellow musicians he has gigged alongside and his vast collection of guitars - he is not a collector, since his guitars all get played! We also listened to selections from his latest release Mud Island Lullaby, which he was inspired to write after being in Memphis last year.

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SHOW # 44 - 01/31/11

CHRISSIE O'DELL & ONE HOT MESS

Chrissie O'Dell is the front-woman for Chrissie O'Dell and One Hot Mess from upstate New York. They are representing the Long Island Blues Society at the International Blues Challenge and before leaving for Memphis, Chrissie came on and talked about their journey. 

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ERIN HARPE & THE DELTA SWINGERS - Segment Begins At The 45:00 Mark

Erin Harpe leads Erin Harpe and The Delta Swingers and they represent the Boston Blues Society at the International Blues Challenge in 2011. Erin joined me on The Couch a day before leaving (ahead of a big snow storm) to head to Memphis. Erin talked about her other band Lovewhip, which puts out a totally different sound than the Delta Swingers does and how she keeps the two musical genres separate. We heard three songs specially written and recorded for the trip to Memphis.

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SHOW # 45 - 02/07/11

2011 IBC BAND CHALLENGE WINNER

THE LIONEL YOUNG BAND

The 2011 International Blues Challenge ended on Saturday with the band and solo/duo champs being named. It was an incredible week of performances (some 275 of them) all along Beale Street. The last day in the Orpheum Theater was filed with incredible music, but none more incredible than the set turned in by the Colorado Blues Society entrant, The Lionel Young Band who were named 2011 BAND WINNERS! Thanks to my friend Heidi and her friend (and friend of the band) Honey Sepeda, I was given the honor of being the first to have the band on for an interview. Joining Lionel (vocals, violin, guitar), were drummer Jay Forrest, sax/harpist Dexter Payne and eventually, Bass player Kim Stone. Ajl the guys were in great moods (can you blame them) after their win and drive back to Colorado. We got to discuss the week in Memphis, how they all felt about their competition, the blues scene in Colorado and also Lionel's adventure here in Memphis that almost prevented the band from playing in the semi-finals.

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