Saturday, December 15, 2007

Internet Finds

It amazing what turns up on the web. I knew that Steve Ahola records his sets at some of the local blues jams. I didn't know that he was putting them on the web, too. I suppose I should feel violated, but I don't.

Here are a few songs with me blowing the harp. They are all Blues tunes, so if you don't dig non-studio quality Blues recordings this might not be your scene.

This one is from the Mojo Lounge Tuesday night jam in Fremont, CA. in February of 2007. This one features Scott Miller on vocals and guitar along with Steve Ahola. I can't remember who else we were playing with.

1. Strange Woman

This set was recorded at the Redwood City Blues Jam in Redwood City, CA. I suspect that the recording device was on the guitar amp, so the harp playing cuts in and out depending on the guitarist's volume. I've got another set of recordings from this set that sound a bit better, but they aren't on the web.

It features the vocal and talent guitar work of John Boutell. Steve Ahola plays guitar and Artie Chavez is playing drums. I forgot who is playing bass.

1. Somebody Stole My Baby From Me
2. Got My Mojo Working
3. Shake Your Boogie
4. Don't Lie To Me

Sunday, December 2, 2007

Blue Monday on a Sunday Afternoon

This past Sunday, I made the trek to the Horseman's Club in Sacramento. Big Mike Balma along with the Sacramento Heritage Festival puts on a few really awesome Blues shows each year.

This year was no exception and it was a show not to be missed. It was well worth the two hour drive from my house as we don't get to see shows like this out here very often.

The vibe is super laid back. Everyone is having a good time. The performers in the bands are relaxed and hanging out. Many of them haven't seen each other in a while. They setting is informal enough to allow each other to sit in, so the band combinations vary a bit. It makes for very spontaneous and fun performances that you aren't likely to see unless you catch these folks hanging out at each other's gigs in Chicago.

It's about as close to a south side Blue Monday party as you'll get on the West Coast on a Sunday afternoon.

Linsey Alexander

First up was Linsey Alexander. He was backup up by Sacramento's premier blues band, the Jeff Watson Band. They started off the afternoon's festivities with a big bang. Mr Alexander was using a wireless microphone system and treated the audience to an intimate performance featuring some very nice vocals and sparking guitar work.

Smoke & Big Time Sarah

After a brief intermission, the Teardrops got up and backed the fabulous Big Time Sarah. Sarah has been around the Chicago scene for more than two decades. She always puts on a fabulous show. She's an amazing singer and entertainer. If you've seen her, you know she has a great stage show. If you haven't seen her, she is well worth seeing, even if you have to go to Chicago to do it!

Magic Slim

Finally, Magic Slim came up. What can be said about Magic Slim that hasn't already been said? The head of Wolf Records in Austria called Magic Slim and the Teardrops the world's greatest band. While some may argue that point, there is no doubt that Slim puts on a tremendous show. He did just that.

The end of the evening featured an impromptu jam with the trio from Chicago. Jon McDonald opened up the set with a really nice solo tune before the rest of them got up. With Sarah and Slim up there, it was pretty damn funny. It was an awesome day!