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The Paul Nelson Band will appear Saturday February 23rd, 2019 in Napoleon MI at the BLUEStage Club. Paul Nelson, being blues/rock icon Johnny Winter’s hand-picked touring and recording guitarist, is just one of the tributes held by this Grammy-winning guitarist. Paul has also shared the world’s stages and/or recorded alongside Eric Clapton, Buddy Guy, Billy Gibbons, Slash, Warren Haynes, Derek Trucks, Vince Gill, Sonny Landreth, Ben Harper, Joe Bonamassa and on and on.

For more info & ticketing:  bluestagejams.com   517-536-8635 or email   tcsjams@gmail.com

Capital Area Blues Society

Calling all Blues bands and solo/duo acts in the mid-Michigan area – The Capital Area Blues Society (CABS) is accepting applications for their 2019 Blues Brawl Competition to send bands to the 2020 International Blues Challenge

Deadline to enter your act into the 2019 Blues Brawl is May 1 at 5 p.m. The competition will take place Sunday, May 19, at the Green Door Blues Bar and Grille, 2005 E. Michigan Avenue, Lansing, Michigan. www.greendoorlive.com

Entrants can apply to compete in the band category or as a solo/duo act. Winning acts will receive the title of 2019 Blues Brawl Winner, performance slots at the 2019 Michigan Blues Fest in Old Town Lansing, and will represent Lansing and the Capital Area Blues Society at the 2020 International Blues Challenge (IBC) in Memphis, Tennessee. Visit the Blues Foundation website at http://www.blues.org/ibc for details on the IBC.

For complete rules and application, go to https://www.facebook.com/CABSblues/notes OR www.capitalareablues.org.
For questions email cabsblues@gmail.com and include 2019 BLUES BRAWL in the subject line.  DO NOT email personnel at the this web site.

National News and Beyond

The winners of the 2019 IBC are…


1st Place
Ms. Hy-C & Fresh Start (St. Louis Blues Society)

2nd Place
Sammy Eubanks & the Work’in Class (Washington Blues Society)

3rd Place
Celso Salim Band (Santa Clarita Valley Blues Society)

Gibson Guitar Award
Gabe Stillman (Billtown Blues Association)


1st Place
Jon Shain (Triangle Blues Society)

2nd Place
Theresa Malenfant & Scott Medford (East Coast Blues Society)

Memphis Cigar Box Guitar
Steve Strongman (Grand River Blues Society)

Lee Oskar Harmonica Award
Darryl Carriere, the Celso Salim Band (Santa Clarita Valley Blues Society)

Best Self-Produced CD
Lock Up the Liquor – The Little Red Rooster Blues Band (Central Delaware Blues Society)

Kofi Burbridge, Best Known for Work in Tedeschi Trucks Band, Derek Trucks Band and Aquarium Rescue Unit Died February 15, 2019. 

Multi-instrumentalist Kofi Burbridge, best known for his keyboard and flute work in Tedeschi Trucks Band, The Derek Trucks Band and Aquarium Rescue Unit died on February 15, 2019.  He was 57.

Born in 1961 in Bronx, N.Y., Kofi and his family moved to Washington, D.C., in 1963. He grew up playing music informally with his younger brother Oteil, who was originally a drummer, and received early praise from his family and friends for his perfect pitch.

Kofi became proficient on a number of instruments, including flute, organ and keyboard. He spent his early professional years playing in a variety of Southeast R&B and pop cover bands. The Burbridge brothers eventually landed in Atlanta, where they formed Knee-Deep with future Aquarium Rescue Unit drummer Jeff Sipe.

Both Sipe and Oteil were part of the original version of Aquarium Rescue Unit—the touring ensemble that developed out of the free-flowing jams in 1988. Kofi joined the band after Hampton’s departure in 1993. A few years later in 1999, he joined another Hampton disciple, Derek Trucks, in the Derek Trucks Band, serving as a multi-instrumentalist and songwriter. Kofi remained with The Derek Trucks Band until they went on hiatus shortly after their final gig in 2010.

In addition to his work with DTB, Kofi was known for a range of side-projects and super groups, such as the Allman Brothers Band offshoot Frogwings. He also occasionally sat in with the Allman Brothers Band, which grew to include Oteil in 1997, even filling in for Gregg Allman a few times during the band’s latter years.

Along with Trucks, Tedeschi, Oteil, DTB singer Mike Mattison, drummers Tyler Greenwell and J. J. Johnson, and an evolving horn section, Kofi co-founded Tedeschi Trucks Band in 2010, serving as his primary musical outlet ever since.

In June of 2017, Kofi suffered a heart attack and underwent emergency surgery. He rejoined the band during their annual run at New York’s famed Beacon Theatre and was a key part of their new studio recording Signs. The album dealt indirectly with a number of recent losses in the Tedeschi Trucks Band family, including the deaths of Col. Bruce Hampton, Gregg Allman, Butch Trucks and B.B. King.

Derek Trucks Band drummer Yonrico Scott broke the news of his passing yesterday, posting, “Today we have lost one of the most beautiful people on the planet. My brother Kofi Burbridge has made his transition; he put up a hard fight. My heart goes out to the Burbridge family.

A message posted to the official Allman Brothers Band Facebook page said, “The Allman Brothers Band Family lost another member last night, Kofi Burbridge. Kofi a master of keyboards and flute came into the family through his brother bassist Oteil. He died in Atlanta on February 15, following complications surrounding treatment for an ongoing cardiac issue.

Mike Ledbetter Passes at 33

Blues fans are mourning the death of Mike Ledbetter, a singer and guitar player whose powerful vocals wowed audiences in the U.S., Europe and Russia. He was 33. Mr. Ledbetter died of a sudden medical emergency Monday at his Elgin home.

Mr. Ledbetter was a 2019 Blues Music Award nominee in two Blues Foundation categories, vocalist of the year and “B.B. King Entertainer.” The Welch-Ledbetter Connection is also up for band of the year. In 2018, he and Welch won a Blues Music Award for best traditional blues album for their Delta Groove LP, “Right Place, Right Time.”

Mr. Ledbetter grew up in Elgin and went to Elgin High School and spent seven years touring with the Nick Moss Band.

Ledbetter got his biggest break in the Blues world on a chance meeting with famed Nick Moss at Rosa's in Chicago. After knocking the vocals out of the park during Moss's set, Nick Moss hired him on the spot and the rest is Blues history. Since this time Ledbetter has had a passion for bringing along a fresh brand of blues but all in a straight-ahead Chicago style

The Welch-Ledbetter Connection was to perform at the Chicago Blues Festival this summer, Terry said. And Mr. Ledbetter was also set to play upcoming dates at Kingston Mines, B.L.U.E.S., Callahan’s Music Hall in Auburn Hills, Michigan, and at Buddy Guy’s Legends.

But he was molded by Otis Rush. As he prepared for a 2016 tribute to the blues man, he told the Sun-Times “Otis Rush is my biggest influence when it comes to blues music. Vocally, instrumentally, everything–he’s been my No. 1 influence.”

He performed throughout the U.S., in Belgium, the Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Germany, Norway, Russia and Switzerland.

McClain and Welch said Mr. Ledbetter was a distant relative of blues legend Leadbelly.

In addition to his partner Kathy Cahoon, he is survived by their two children.

James Walter Rodford (7 July 1941 – 20 January 2018)

The Zombies bassist Jim Rodford has died aged 76 just days after his final performance. The musician, whose career spanned six decades and included 18 years with The Kinks, died January 20, 2019 after a fall on the stairs.

James Walter Rodford (7 July 1941 – 20 January 2018) was an English musician, who played bass guitar for several British rock bands. He was a founding member of Argent, which was led by his cousin Rod Argent, and performed with them from 1969 until they disbanded in 1976. He was the bass guitarist for the Kinks from 1978 until they disbanded in 1996. In 2004, he joined the reunited Zombies, whom he had been closely associated with since the early 1960s, and remained a member until his death in 2018. He was also a member of the Swinging Blue Jeans and the Kast Off Kinks.

Rodford was born on 7 July 1941, in St Albans, Hertfordshire, England. In the late 1950s and early 1960s he was a member of the Bluetones. Rodford was instrumental in helping his younger cousin Rod Argent form the Zombies in 1964. Rodford later joined the Mike Cotton Sound as a bass guitarist.

Along with Rod Argent, Rodford was one of the founding members of Argent. When Rod Argent quit the band, the remaining three members (Rodford, Bob Henrit, and John Verity) formed the short-lived band Phoenix. Eventually, Rodford joined the Kinks as a bass guitarist in 1978 and played with them until their final disintegration in 1996.

From 1999–2001 Rodford appeared in a band that ex-Animals guitarist Hilton Valentine formed, the Animals II. Rodford continued with this band (which changed its working name to "The Animals and Friends) until joining Argent and Colin Blunstone in the revival of the Zombies.

Rodford never played with the Zombies in the 1960s, despite having been closely involved with them. However, he began to play the bass guitar with the band's reincarnation in the early years of the 21st century, with his son Steve on drums.

In 2008, Rodford joined the Kast Off Kinks, on the retirement of John Dalton.  In 2009, Jim Rodford regularly played in "The Rodford Files" along with his sons Steve Rodford (Blunstone/Argent band) on drums and Russ Rodford on guitar, plus Derik Timms (mOOn Dogs) on guitar, lap steel, slide and vocals.

In 2010, the original line-up of Argent reformed and resumed playing in concert. They mounted a short tour including gigs in Frome, Southampton, Wolverhampton, Leamington Spa and London.

Rodford met his wife, Jean, at the Pioneer Club, St Albans, in the early days of his music career. They have two sons, Steve, a drummer, Russell a guitarist and a daughter, Paula.

On 20 January 2018, Rodford died after he fell down stairs at his home in St Albans. Rodford had just returned home to England after completing a short tour in Florida with The Zombies with his final on-stage appearance coming on 14 January.

Nominees for the 40th Blues Music Awards

On Wednesday January 23, 2019, the Memphis-based Blues Foundation — the organization that stages the event — announced the nominees for the awards, which honor the top artists in the blues music field. Ceremonies will take place at 7 p.m. May 9 at the Memphis Cook Convention Center, where trophies will be handed out in 25 different categories.

Acoustic Album:
"A Woman's Soul" — Rory Block
"Black Cowboys" — Dom Flemons
"Global Griot" — Eric Bibb
"Journeys To The Heart Of The Blues" — Joe Louis Walker/Bruce Katz/Giles Robson
"Wish The World Away" — Ben Rice

Acoustic Artist:
Ben Rice
Guy Davis
Hadden Sayers
Harrison Kennedy
Rory Block

Album of the Year:
"America's Child" — Shemekia Copeland
"The High Cost Of Low Living" — The Nick Moss Band featuring Dennis Gruenling
"Journeys To The Heart Of The Blues" — Joe Louis Walker/Bruce Katz/Giles Robson
"Rough Cut" — Curtis Salgado and Alan Hager
"Why Did You Have To Go" — Anthony Geraci

B.B. King Entertainer:
Beth Hart
Bobby Rush
Lil' Ed Williams
Michael Ledbetter
Sugaray Rayford

Band of the Year:
Anthony Geraci & The Boston Blues All-Stars
Larkin Poe
Lil' Ed & the Blues Imperials
Nick Moss Band
Welch-Ledbetter Connection

Best Emerging Artist Album:
"Burn Me Alive" — Heather Newman
"Free" — Amanda Fish
"Heartland And Soul" — Kevin Burt
"Tough As Love" — Lindsay Beaver
"Wish The World Away" — Ben Rice

Blues Rock Album:
"The Big Bad Blues" — Billy F Gibbons
"High Desert Heat" — Too Slim and the Taildraggers
"Live At The '62 Center" — Albert Cummings
"Poor Until Payday" — The Reverend Peyton's Big Damn Band
"Winning Hand" — Tinsley Ellis

Blues Rock Artist:
Billy F Gibbons
Eric Gales
J.P. Soars
Kenny Wayne Shepherd
Tinsley Ellis

Contemporary Blues Album:
"America's Child" — Shemekia Copeland
"Belle Of The West" — Samantha Fish
"Chicago Plays The Stones" — The Living History Band
"Hold On" — Kirk Fletcher
"Wild Again" — The Proven Ones

Contemporary Blues Female Artist:
Beth Hart
Danielle Nicole
Samantha Fish
Shemekia Copeland
Vanessa Collier

Contemporary Blues Male Artist:
Kenny Neal
Rick Estrin
Ronnie Baker Brooks
Selwyn Birchwood
Toronzo Cannon

Instrumentalist — Bass:
Danielle Nicole
Michael "Mudcat" Ward
Patrick Rynn
Scot Sutherland
Willie J. Campbell

Instrumentalist — Drums:
Cedric Burnside
Jimi Bott
June Core
Tom Hambridge
Tony Braunagel

Instrumentalist — Guitar:
Anson Funderburgh
Christoffer "Kid" Andersen
Laura Chavez
Monster Mike Welch
Ronnie Earl

Instrumentalist — Harmonica:
Billy Branch
Bob Corritore
Dennis Gruenling
Kim Wilson
Mark Hummel

Instrumentalist — Horn:
Doug James
Jimmy Carpenter
Kaz Kazzanoff
Mindi Abair
Nancy Wright
Vanessa Collier

Pinetop Perkins Piano Player (Instrumentalist – Piano):
Anthony Geraci
Bruce Katz
Jim Pugh
Marcia Ball
Mike Finnigan

Instrumentalist – Vocals:
Beth Hart
Danielle Nicole
Janiva Magness
Michael Ledbetter
Shemekia Copeland

Song of the Year:
“Ain't Got Time For Hate,” written by John Hahn and Will Kimbrough
“Angelina, Angelina,” written by Anthony Geraci
“Cognac,” written by Buddy Guy, Tom Hambridge and Richard Fleming
“No Mercy In This Land,” written by Ben Harper
“The Ice Queen,” written by Sue Foley

Soul Blues Album:
"Back In Business" — Frank Bey
"Every Soul's A Star" — Dave Keller
"I'm Still Around" — Johnny Rawls
"Love Makes A Woman" — The Knickerbocker All-Stars
"Reckoning" — Billy Price

Soul Blues Female Artist:
Annika Chambers
Barbara Blue
Candi Staton
Thornetta Davis
Whitney Shay

Soul Blues Male Artist:
Frank Bey
Johnny Rawls
Sugaray Rayford
Wee Willie Walker
William Bell

Traditional Blues Album:
"The Blues Is Alive And Well" — Buddy Guy
"The High Cost Of Low Living" — Nick Moss Band Featuring Dennis Gruenling
"The Luckiest Man" — Ronnie Earl & The Broadcasters
"Tribute to Carey Bell" — Lurrie Bell & the Bell Dynasty
"Why Did You Have To Go" — Anthony Geraci

Koko Taylor Award (Traditional Blues Female Artist):
Fiona Boyes
Lindsay Beaver
Ruthie Foster
Sue Foley
Trudy Lynn

Traditional Blues Male Artist:
Anthony Geraci
Cedric Burnside
James Harman
Lurrie Bell
Nick Moss