Blues Blog
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Blues bytes, notes, rants n' raves about da blues!

Wednesday, January 21, 2004
Scheduled Lineup for Winter Blues Bash 2004

The Shuffle-Aires, Cari Dell & the Hard Drives, the SpellCasters, the Ruffnecks, the Moanin’ Blacksnakes, Joey Vitale, plus special guests.

posted by Richard 4:37 AM
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Monday, January 19, 2004

Winter Blues Bash 2004

Southern Nevada Blues Association will hold it's first FUNd raiser. This Sunday, January 25th, from 2pm - 9pm, the Sand Dollar Blues Lounge is hosting a "Winter Blues Bash" to benefit the SNBA. The Sand Dollar is located at 3355 Spring Mountain Road at Polaris. Tel: 702.871.6651

A donation of only $5 gets you in the door to witness plenty of performances by the TOP blues bands in Southern Nevada. There will be lots of prizes, so hurry over and take part in the raffles. The Sand Dollar will also have delicious eats available such as Gumbo or Shrimp Etouffee & steamed rice, some mighty nice beans & rice, and more. So work up an appetite and dine sufficiently at the Bash -- it's all to benefit the SNBA! Visit for details.

posted by Richard 5:08 PM
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Sunday, January 11, 2004

Little Milton Interview

Little Milton Campbell took time out from his busy schedule to stop by the KUNV radio studio on December 27, 2003. Sitting in with Brian "Blues Dr." Spencer for the second half of Nothing But The Blues, Milton comfortably spun tales of his early blues days. Always a man coming straight from the heart, when Spencer expressed his excitement about having him on the show Little Milton replied "Real people don't meet strangers." That's just the sort of man Milton is - the real deal. A gentleman and a great bluesman to boot.    

posted by Richard 11:07 AM
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Saturday, November 01, 2003

unofficial logo by Phil Iwasaki

The Southern Nevada Blues Association started from humble origins over salad bar entrees at the Sam's Town Cafe on October 29, 2003. Five fanatic blues lovers were in attendance - Amber "Gypsy" Young, Carol Michaud, Don Brown Sr., Phil Iwasaki and Ric "Bion" Bianchino. It was a very constructive meeting, providing a foundation for the bright future we all envisioned for the organization. Plans were made for a second gathering to be held at Gypsy and Phil's home on November 9th.

These five original founders immediately began recruiting blues fans for the next meeting by any means available - word of mouth, emails, and placing information on various website (all five are actively involved with blues sites on the web). Even given such short notice, nineteen blues lovers showed. The SNBA was off to a good start.

Hope to see many of you at a future meeting. For more information visit

The SNBA staff

posted by Richard 4:08 AM
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Monday, September 01, 2003
Liz Mandville GreesonLiz Mandville Greeson Today's music market seems to rely more and more on star value (read sex appeal) and schlock to sell records. We are NXESS of pretty boy bands and should be spared any additional sparsely clad Britneys. So it's refreshing when someone such as Liz Mandville Greeson comes along. In a world where many pop stars choose only one name, Greeson has three. Maybe that number symbolizes her triple threat talent. Liz is an enjoyable entertainer, a significant singer (with a vocal range of four octaves), and a darn good songwriter. Back In Love, her third release on Earwig Music, more than proves all three points.

Starting straight from the first cut, "Soul Tender," you knew that Back In Love Again would be tearing at your heart strings. This song, like many others on the CD, brings back the soulful R&B ballads of yesteryear. It is nicely complimented by the addition of the Chigago Fire Horns. The horns also find there way onto "All My Love," giving it a Chuck Willis stroll-like quality.

While Greeson's vocal is both soulful and tender on the opening track, "Juicehead Man" with its barrelhouse delivery, is raucous and driving. The same is to be said for "Lip Service" where she tells her man exactly what she wants from him. This woman is definitely in control.

"All Alone" slows the pace once more and leads into the creative surprise of the disc. Aptly titled "The Gift," this song wouldn't be out of place on a Stevie Nicks album. While not a blues number, it does Greeson's song writing (she penned all 13 songs on the CD) proud. Its hauting opening line "I use to pleasure silently" stays with you to the song's climax:

Of all the gifts my lovers brought
yours cost most but most it taught
the child that lived inside of me
afraid in love alone is gone...

"The Gift" is enhanced by the addition of beautiful cello playing of Tom Culver. Powerful stuff.

Liz follows this with the r&b flavored "Face The Music," the title track "Back In Love," and the country-like "For Real." She lightens up things a bit with "Johnny And Me." Johnny, by the way, is not an ex-lover but her dog!

The remaining songs "The Night Thing" (with a nice sax solo by Sonny Seals) and "Broken-Hearted Fool" again go back to Greeson's r&b influences. And the short closer, "Shine Clear With Joy" Greeson takes it to the church. This gospel tune, sung acapella with backup singers, concludes the CD on a positive note.

Back In Love Again contains some of the best low-down blues I've heard in a long time and should gain Liz Mandville Greeson the wider audience she well deserves. All this without giving "lip service" to anyone!

posted by Richard 5:21 AM
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Saturday, August 16, 2003
Updated Concert Events For 2003

9/4 Liz Mandrille Greeson - Boulder Station, Railhead
9/6 Russ Morgan Orchestra - Stardust Ballroom
9/6 Spyro Gyra - Spring Mountain State Park
Coco Montoya - Boulder Station, Railhead
9/11-13 Neville Brothers - Stardust Ballroom
9/12 The Allman Brothers Band w/ Karl Denson's Tiny Universe - The Joint
9/12 JD Simo - Las Vegas Bike Fest, Freemont Street
9/13 Steppenwolf/JD Simo - Las Vegas Bike Fest, Freemont Street
9/18 Kenny Neal - Boulder Station, Railhead
9/19 Alan Parsons Project - Boulder Station, Railhead
9/25 Nick Curran & The Nitelites - Boulder Station, Railhead
9/25-28 Manhattan Transfer - The Orleans
9/26 Al Jarreau - Green Valley Ranch, Whiskey Amphitheater
9/27 John Hiatt & Robert Cray - Hard Rock, The Joint
9/27 Steely Dan - Mandalay Bay Events Center
10/2 Duke Robillard - Boulder Station, Railhead
10/4 Dirty Dozen Brass Band - Clark County Gov't Center
10/4 David Benoit - Boulder Station, The Railhead
10/4 Ruth Brown - Charlston Heights Center
10/9 Tommy Castro - Boulder Station, Railhead
10/12 Dave Koz - Sunset Station, Club Madrid
10/16 Frankie Lee - Bouder Station, The Railhead
10/23 Rod Piazza - Boulder Station, Railhead
10/24 Peter Frampton w/Joe Bonamassa - Mandalay Bay, House Of Blues
10/24-25 JD Simo - Mandalay Bay, HOB Courtyard Stage
10/25 JD Simo - Rock & Rolla Party-Ola, North Las Vegas
10/30 Little Charlie - Boulder Station, Railhead
10/30-11/1 Nathalie Cole - The Paris
11/1 Charlie Musselwhite & John Hammond - Sammy Davis Park
11/13 Big Al - Boulder Station, The Railhead
11/13-16 Tony Bennett - The Paris
11/22-23 Larry Carlton - Suncoast Showroom
11/27 Magic Slim - Boulder Station, Railhead
11/29 Jimmy Dorsey Orchestra - Stardust Ballroom
12/11 Joe Louis Walker - Boulder Station, Railhead
12/12 Eric Burdon - Sunset Station, Club Madrid
12/18 Brian Setzer Orchestra - Hard Rock, The Joint

posted by Richard 1:32 PM
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Saturday, July 26, 2003

Little Milton, Hubert Sumlin and friend
Little Milton at the 2002 Handy Awards VIPre Party
2002 W.C. Handy Awards VIPre Party

"Hey, hey. The blues is alright" ...Little Milton Campbell is in town! Winner of the 2002 W.C. Handy Award for Soul Blues Album of the Year ("Feel It") and Soul Blues Male Artist of the Year. This Saturday Milton will play a private party at the Golden Nuggett. However, on Sunday July 27, he'll appear for two shows at the Elks Lodge 1508. Ticket prices are $25 in advance and $27 at the door. Performances are 6:30 and 9:30 p.m. The lodge is located at 600 W. Owens, Las Vegas 89106. Tel 702.648.8033 Visit Little Milton's website at

posted by Richard 9:55 PM
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Thursday, July 24, 2003
John Lee Hooker Jr.
...John Junior looks so much like his father it's almost uncanny. What's more remarkable is that John Lee Hooker Jr., in his 40s and currently living in the Bay Area, is the real thing, not some tired attempt to duplicate his daddy. He respects what John Sr. has accomplished and the tradition whence he came. Junior, however, is a stubborn kind of fellow, and he wants to make his own mark. "If I tried to fill my father's shoes, I'd get cramps in my feet just trying to take one step," he says... -- Nicky Baxter, Metroactive     more

John Lee Hooker Jr. will play the Railhead at Boulder Station on Thursday, July 24th

posted by Richard 4:42 PM
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Saturday, June 14, 2003
CD BabyCD Baby is a little online record store (from Portland, Oregon) that features CDs by independent musicians. The CDs they sell come directly from the musicians. No distributors are involved. That means more money for the starving artist. When selling through CD Baby, musicians make $6-$12 (compared to $1-$2 using a distributor) per CD, and get paid weekly. They're the second largest seller of independent CDs on the web. Second only to

Some of the artists featured on Las Vegas Blues have their CDs for sale at CD Baby. Two that come to mind are Albert Cummings, and the Stoney Curtis Band. Stoney Curtis is based out of L.A. and frequently plays the Sand Dollar Lounge. Cummings played Las Vegas recently and will return next year. Remember, "keeping the blues alive" also means supporting local and/or independent artists. Click on the logo above and give CD Baby a good look. You just might like what you see and hear.

posted by Richard 9:50 PM
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Upcoming Events These shows will take you up to December, 2003! Mark your favourites on your calendar. Thanks to Don Brown Sr. of Caught Live Too! who contributed most of the tour dates.

6/19 Kelly Richey @ Bouder Station, The Railhead
6/20,21 Al Green @ The Paris, Le Theatre des Arts
6/20 Ziggy Marley @ Mandalay Bay, House Of Blues
6/20 Lou Reed @ Hard Rock, The Joint
6/26 Sean Costello @ Bouder Station, The Railhead
7/3 Carolyn Wonderland @ Bouder Station, The Railhead
7/10 Mem Shannon @ Bouder Station, The Railhead
7/11 The Bruce Katz Band @ the Sand Dollar
7/17 Hadden Sayers @ Bouder Station, The Railhead
7/18 Elvis Costello & Chris Robinson @ Hard Rock, The joint
7/24 John Lee Hooker Jr. @ Bouder Station, The Railhead
7/25 Steel Pulse @ The Palms
7/25 BB King Festival @ Mandalay Bay Events Center
7/27 Little Milton @ the Elks Lodge, 600 W. Owens [648-8033]
7/27 Jackson Browne, Steve Earle, & Keb' Mo' @ The Aladdin
7/31 Rod Piazza @ Bouder Station, The Railhead
8/1 Boz Scaggs @ Mandalay Bay, House Of Blues
8/7 Dave Hole @ Bouder Station, The Railhead
8/15 Stanley Clarke @ Boulder Station
8/18 Norah Jones @ Hard Rock, The Joint
8/20 ZZ Top @ Mandalay Bay Events Center
8/28 Walter Trout @ Bouder Station, The Railhead
8/30 Susan Tedeschi @ The Paris
9/6 Spyro Gyra @ Spring Mountain State Park
9/11 Coco Montoya @ Bouder Station, The Railhead
9/12 Allman Brothers Band @ Hard Rock, The Joint
9/12 JD Simo @ Las Vegas Bike Fest, Freemont Street
9/13 Steppenwolf/JD Simo @ Las Vegas Bike Fest, Freemont Street
9/25 Nick Curran @ Bouder Station, The Railhead
9/27 John Hiatt & Robert Cray @ Hard Rock, The Joint
10/4 Dirty Dozen Brass Band @ Clark County Gov't Center
10/9 Tommy Castro @ Bouder Station, The Railhead
10/16 Frankie Lee @ Bouder Station, The Railhead
10/24 Peter Frampton w/Joe Bonamassa @ Mandalay Bay, House Of Blues
10/24-25 JD Simo @ Mandalay Bay, HOB Courtyard Stage
10/25 JD Simo @ Rock & Rolla Party-Ola, North Las Vegas
10/30 Little Charlie & the Nightcats @ Bouder Station, The Railhead
11/1 Charlie Musselwhite & John Hammond @ Sammy Davis Park
12/18 Brian Setzer Orchastra @ Hard Rock, The Joint

posted by Richard 11:02 AM
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Sunday, June 08, 2003
Handy Awards logo
W.C. Handy Blues Awards
For over two decades, the Handy Awards have celebrated excellence in performance and recording of the blues and is the highest honor bestowed upon artists in the blues industry. 2003, designated by the United States Senate as the Year of the Blues (marking the 100th anniversary of when W. C. Handy first heard the blues in a train depot in Mississippi), brought forth another excellent crop of bluesmen and women. Here are the year's winners:

Blues Album of the Year - Shemekia Copeland "Talking to Strangers"
Blues Entertainer of the Year - B.B. King
Blues Band of the Year - Magic Slim and The Teardrops
Best New Artist Debut - Robert Randolph "Live at the Wetlands"
Contemporary Male Artist of the Year - Charlie Musselwhite
Contemporary Female Artist of Year - Shemekia Copeland
Soul Male Artist of the Year - Solomon Burke
Soul Female Artist of the Year - Etta James
Traditional Male Artist of the Year - R.L. Burnside
Traditional Female Artist of the Year - Koko Taylor
Acoustic Blues Artist of the Year - John Hammond
Blues Instrumentalist - Guitar - Duke Robillard
Blues Instrumentalist - Keyboards - Pinetop Perkins
Blues Instrumentalist - Harmonica - Charlie Musselwhite
Blues Instrumentalist - Bass - Willie Kent
Blues Instrumentalist - Drums - Willie "Big Eyes" Smith
Blues Instrumentalist - Other - Clarence "Gatemouth" Brown (Fiddle)
Blues Instrumentalist - Horn - Roomful of Blues Horns
Soul Blues Album of the Year - Solomon Burke - "Don't Give Up on Me"
Traditional Blues Album of the Year - James Cotton "35th Anniversary Jam"
Contemporary Blues Album of the Year - Shemekia Copeland - "Talking to Strangers"
Acoustic Blues Album - Big Jack Johnson - "Memphis Bar-B-Que Sessions"
Comeback Blues Album of the Year - Jody Williams - "Return of a Legend"
Historical Blues Album of the Year - Albert King - "Born Under a Bad Sign"
Blues Song of the Year, Song/Writer (Artist/Album) - "Let It Rain" - W.C. Clark, Bobby Boyd & John Gray Gregson (W.C. Clark - "From Austin With Soul")

posted by Richard 6:46 PM
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Saturday, June 07, 2003
Long John HunterLong John Hunter Returns to Vegas Texas bluesman, and Alligator Records recording artist, Long John Hunter has been playing his Tex-mix-Bayou blues for four decades. Last time he visited Las Vegas was in 1999 (possibly early 2000). I saw him at that time (with Texas Shoot Out members Lonnie Brooks and Phillip Walker) and later in May 2000 where he appeared at Elvis Presley's Memphis as part of the many musicians who played Beale Street during that year's Handy Awards. Don't miss the chance to see this legend. He'll be at Boulder Station's The Railhead on Thursday June 12th. Be there!

posted by Richard 2:24 PM
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Tuesday, May 20, 2003
The Doheny Blues Left early a.m. Saturday the 17th for Dana Point. The festival was going to be a fantastic listening and visual experience. I planned to document all I could on 35mm. So I took 12 rolls of film and forgot my camera at home! Man, talk about a case of the blues. However, I looked on the brighter side and actually enjoyed the event even more since I wasn't chained to the camera.

Take a look at the first installment of The Doheny Diary. Later some photographs contributed by friends will be posted. All this along with Don Brown Sr.'s review of the concerts. Until then, may all your blues be minor.

posted by Richard 8:02 PM
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Friday, May 16, 2003
Doheny Blues Festival 2003

Doheny Blues Festival Now I really have the blues. Usually I go to the Handy Awards in Memphis. This year I decided to stay close to home and get my blues L.A. style. There'll be a terrific line up this year at Doheny State Beach in Dana Point, CA. Artists include Buddy Guy, Johnny Lang, Jimmy Vaughan, John Hammond, Shemeka Copeland, Dr. John and Delbert McClinton to name a few. And I'm very anxious to see one of the greatest r&b singers to soulify the blues - Solomon Burke. I also can't wait to see the Richard Johnston Band. Richard was seen at last year's Handys playing the Beale Street sidewalk. One hellava player. Not to be missed. Hope to see you there!

posted by Richard 8:57 PM
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Monday, April 28, 2003
Backlogged Blogs Maybe lately I've had the blues. No, not really. It's just that I get bogged down with other projects. My jazz friends ask "where's the jazz?" and blues friends query "where are the blues updates?" And friend friends (do I have any of these?) inquire about my absence and lack of attention. At times I seem to have jazz n' blues ADD. This train of mine runs on many different tracks. No need to worry. I'll soon switch to the blues rail. In any case, hold on. It may be a bumpy ride!

posted by Richard 7:38 AM
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