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True Blue
from Ellis Kell
Argus/Dispatch blues columnist

MARCH 2006

MVBS Brings Back Rev. Robert Jones for BITS Residency…

Rev Robert Jones (14K)Rev. Robert Jones returns to the Quad Cities for the next installment in the 2005-2006 Blues in the Schools/Artist in Residency Series. Rev. Jones, a full time pastor in Detroit, will conduct 12 workshops in the area, including the Handicapped Development Center, East Moline Correctional Center, and two additional public performances. Jones is also widely recognized by fellow blues artists for his ability to sing in the traditional style of the early bluesmen. Rev. Robert Jones is scheduled to open in the tent on Friday, June 30th at this years’s IH Mississippi Valley Blues Festival. He will also conduct a free workshop at the blues festival on Sat., July 1st at 4 pm.

New Blues Fer Youz…

Jimmy Thackery (5K)“The Essential Jimmy Thackery,” Jimmy Thackery (Blind Pig Records) The selected tracks in this compilation are taken from previous Blind Pig releases recorded between 1992 and 2000. Special guest musicians include Duke Robillard, Lonnie Brooks, and Reba Russell. An excellent Jimmy Thackery primer - for fans old and new!

Rev Billy C Wirtz (6K)“Sermon From Bethlehem, “ Reverend Billy C. Wirtz (Blind Pig Records) Reverend Billy C. Wirtz takes a satirical swipe at life and faith, delivering his message via inspired piano chops and soulful vocals. This is a hybrid mix of gospel, blues and boogie-woogie – equal parts tent revival and juke joint jam. Amen, brothers and sisters!

Further On Up the Road…

Blues Fest 2006 (11K)MVBS has announced it’s line up for this year’s IH Mississippi Valley Blues Festival, June 30, July 1 and 2. Featured acts this year include Poppa Chubby, Ronnie Baker Brooks, Mavis Staples, Sonny Landreth, Dirty Dozen Brass Band, Chris Thomas King, Kenny Neal & Family, C. J. Chenier & the Red Hot Louisiana Band, Eric Bibb, Kelley Hunt, James Cotton, Guitar Shorty, Delbert McClinton, and more. For this year’s complete blues festival line-up, visit www.mvbs.org on the web.

Redstone Room small (141K)RME will open the new Redstone Room on April 1st – a state of the art live music venue, that will feature national touring acts and the best of local and regional bands. A 2–day Grand Opening celebration is planned for April 14 and 15, with special acts to be announced soon. For more details, visit www.rivermusicexperience.org - and watch for more information to come on this new QC’s music venue.

Until we meet again at these crossroads… peace, love & blessings to all, and…

Blues to ‘ya!

Local musician Ellis Kell writes about blues music both local and national in ‘True Blue’, running the first Sunday of each month in Entertainment. He is also on the staff of River Music Experience, a not-for-profit center dedicated to preservation, education and celebration of American Roots music.


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