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True Blue from Ellis Kell
Argus/Dispatch blues columnist


July 2000

Doobie-doobie-doo...

If 'ya know what's good for 'ya, you'll be 'takin' it to the streets', "down around the corner," to 'listen to the music' of the Doobie Brothers on Thursday, July 20th at the Adler Theatre in Davenport. Their radio mega-hits served as soundtrack for 'the missing years' of Baby Boomer youth. (They always told me we had a great time...but I still can't find some pieces of the puzzle, so to speak...) Rumor has it that house-rocker Anthony Gomes will open the show, and will no doubt provide ample kindlin' to start the fire burnin' for the Doobie's set. Don't miss this one!

The 16th Annual Mississippi Valley Blues Festival will be another true blue memory by the time this edition hits the streets, but we want to take the opportunity to thank all the volunteers, sponsors, officers and membership of the Mississippi Valley Blues Society for bringin' it all home again. These folks devote at least 13 months a year to putting it all together for the thousands of Blues fans who enjoy the annual festival, and narry a one is paid to do so. If you happened to miss this year's Bluesfest, shame on 'ya! However, you can always check 'em out on the web at www.mvbs.org , and, if 'ya didn't get a chance to pitch in this year, you can always show your support by signing up for a MVBS membership.

New Blues for Youz...

"Come to Papa," Carl Weathersby (Evidence) This has to be one of the hottest Blues releases of the new year, showcasing the gut-bustin', soul-drenched Blues that is Carl Weathersby's trademark. Lucky Peterson guests on keyboards, The Memphis Horns add their signature Blues blast to the mix, and Ann Peebles lends her soulful vocal to the title cut. 'Ya just got to have this one!

"Royal Blue," Koko Taylor (Alligator Records) The Queen of the Blues is back with her 8th album on the Alligator label, and she is joined by good friends B. B. King, Kenny Wayne Shepherd, Keb' Mo', and Johnnie Johnson. A true blue icon with 40 years on the circuit, Ms. Taylor is still delivering her brand of hot 'n sassy Blues with passion and power. Ya' just can't lose, when Koko Taylor sings the Blues...

"The Toughest Girl Alive," Candye Kane (Bullseye Blues & Jazz) Y'all better listen good to this girl sing her Blues, or she's liable to put the whoop 'up side 'yo head! This is no-nonsense Blues from the heart of a full-grown WOMAN, who knows the story of love and lust. And, as the folks who now will tell you, she 'doesn't mind dancing, eloquently and soulfully, on what can be a fine, shifting line between the two.' Get with it, or get out of he road!

Just a reminder...

Live As I'll Ever Be," Chris Smither (HighTone Records - HCD 8120) Fresh tracks, now on the tracks. The heart and soul of Chris Smither's live performances, including virtually all of the favorites. This is the one we talked about last month, and you should most definitely put it on your essential Blues wish list for July.

Further on down the road...

he 2nd Annual River Rockin' Ribfest is just around the corner on August 25, 26 & 27, and will feature country music on Friday, Blues and houserockin' on Saturday, and gospel-spiritual music on Sunday. Its a three-day celebration in Davenport's LeClaire Park, featuring great live entertainment, children's area and some of the finest 'ribateurs' in the nation completing for $6000.00 in prize money! This year will feature 6 national and 3 local rib vendors, for a total of twice as many as last year! Therefore, Ribfest organizers guarantee less time standing in line, and more time to enjoy the music, good bar-b-q and good times. For more information on Ribfest, visit their web site at www.qconline.com/ribfest. River Rockin' Ribfest is proudly sponsored by Quad-Cities Online, The Dispatch, The Rock Island Argus, The Leader, Quad City Radio Group, Sunset Lakes Resort, KWQC-TV6, and the President Casino & Hotel.

The sun is shinin', the breeze is blowin' cool across the river, and I'm outa' here for now. I think I'll just go sit underneath that ol' fishing tree down at Sunset Park for a while and count my gratefuls. You know, these Blues aint always about bein' sad...mostly just about bein' alive, and damn lucky to tell about it. I try to write it like I say it, send it along whenever I am able, and sometimes find it better to just leave it the way I found it.

Until we meet again at this crossroads...

Blues to 'ya!

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