Your Complete Guide to the Chicago Blues Scene

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Chicago Blues Guide HOT shows
Rory BlockOct. 7: Rory Block at Old Town School, Chicago

for more HOT shows & Early Warnings
Muddy 100 CDFall 2015 Contest

Win a copy of Muddy Waters 100 CD, a star-studded centennial celebration of the blues legend's music, plus a 48-page booklet.


Toronzo Cannon by JennFEATURE: Interview with Toronzo Cannon

This rising star just signed with Alligator, plays all over the world and drives a CTA bus. How does talented Toronzo manage his seemingly double life?

photo: Jennifer Noble
Mavis StaplesLIVE REVIEW: Blues on the Fox 2015

Mavis Staples, North Mississippi Allstars, Otis Taylor, Royal Southern Brotherhood & more.

photo: Jennifer Noble
Mud & Big Bill Morganfield by DianneLIVE REVIEW:
Chicago Blues Fest 2015

Centennial Tributes to Willie Dixon & Muddy Waters, Buddy Guy, Shemekia Copeland, Toronzo Cannon, Eddy Clearwater, Billy Branch, Clarence Carter, Syl Johnson, Zora Young & more.
photo: Dianne Bruce Dunklau
Lazer LloydFEATURE: Interview with Lazer Lloyd

Israel's Lazer Lloyd is not your usual blues-rock guitarist. He had many career choices in the U.S. but ended up "Rockin' in the Holy Land" and beyond to spread hope around the world. He will perform at Rosa's on Aug. 4.
Bumblebee Bob artR.I.P. Bumblebee Bob Novak
Nov. 17,1931 - July 14, 2015

Chicago artist/bluesman Novak played harmonica with B.B. King, Freddie King, Muddy Waters, Humble Pie & others. An Art Institute alum, his colorful art adorns the front entrance of Rosa's Lounge and is collected worldwide. Rosa's will host a memorial jam in his honor on Sept. 27.

Click HERE to read more
Otis on guitarFEATURE: Interview with Shuggie Otis

Musical prodigy and the son of late legend Johnny Otis, Shuggie's early music influenced the likes of Prince and Lenny Kravitz. Always ahead of his time, the multi-talented artist has been rediscovered and is hitting the comeback trail. He will perform at City Winery on July 17.
Big Time Sarah by KurganskyNEWS: R.I.P. Big Time Sarah
Jan. 31, 1953 - June 13, 2015

Sarah Streeter (a.k.a. Big Time Sarah) passed away at age 62 from heart disease in a Chicago area nursing home. She was a fixture on the Chicago Blues scene since the 1970s, recorded for Delmark Records and sang with Sunnyland Slim and others. (photo: Michael Kurgansky)
NEWS: R.I.P. Riley B. King:
Sept. 16, 1925 - May 14, 2015

B.B. King & Peter Frampton
Blues fans around the world mourn the passing of the King of the Blues.
Photo: Dianne Bruce Dunklau captured a tender moment with B.B. King holding Peter Frampton's hand at RiverEdge Park, Aurora in 2013 for Frampton's Guitar Circus Concert.
Devon Allman by Roman Sobus smallFEATURE: Interview with Devon Allman

Although his tenure with Royal Southern Brotherhood winds down after four years, Allman has plenty in store as he returns to his solo career. His new CD, Ragged & Dirty, displays his "love affair" with Chicago and the blues.
Mavis Staples wails by JennLIVE REVIEW: I'll Take You There: Celebrating 75 Years of Mavis Staples

A star-studded cast from many musical camps descended upon Chicago to pay homage to one very special lady.
Jarekus SingletonLIVE REVIEW:
Jarekus Singleton at SPACE

What makes this rising young star so special that Alligator Records snatched him up? Roving reporter Liz Mandeville scoped out this uniquely talented artist to find the answer.
Blues in Modern Days book coverFEATURE: Book Review/ Blues in Modern Days: 31 Artists in Their Own Words

Authors Terry Mullins & Bob Kieser have interviewed and photographed dozens of today's living blues artists from all corners of the U.S. Here are 31 of them "in their own words."
Jimmy Rogers book coverFEATURE: Book Review/ Blues All Day Long: The Jimmy Rogers Story

Author Wayne Everett Goins elevates this highly influential and beloved Chicago musician to his rightful place in the blues pantheon.
Southern Soul-Blues book cover smallFEATURE: Book Review/ Southern Soul-Blues

Chicago author Dave Whiteis offers an in-depth look at this under-the-radar musical genre. Interviews with Denise LaSalle, Bobby Rush, Latimore, Willie Clayton and more.
Johnny Winter B&W horizontalFEATURE: Winter in July

Indiana's poet laureate George Kalamaras pays tribute to the late Johnny Winter. Exclusive photos!
Nick Moss & Michael LedbetterLIVE REVIEW -- Nick Moss Band, Kevin Purcell & The Nightburners

What do you get when two great hometown blues bands are jammin' on the same stage on the same night?  Blues on the Prairie Concert proved to be a family style night of soul satisfyin' music and more.
Charlie Love by JennFEATURE: Inside the Blues with Liz Mandeville

Charlie Love heads to Durban, South Africa as Blues Ambassador.
Charlie recalls his long journey from Chicago's South Side to this premiere international blues festival.
Eddy Clearwater coral suit smallCD REVIEW -- Eddy "The Chief" Clearwater

Writer Terry Abrahamson celebrates the blues master's new live CD and explores the mysticism of the Deep South and Chicago's West Side grit that transformed Eddy Harrington into Eddy "The Chief" Clearwater, blues legend.
LIVE REVIEW: The First Ever European
 Blues Cruise

European Blues Cruise group shot w/ banner
Chicago blues greats John Primer, Toronzo Cannon, Ronnie Hicks, Peaches, Demetria Taylor, Mike Wheeler, Omar Coleman and more sailed the sunny Mediterranean for this maiden voyage. They showed the international crowd how to party Chicago style!
Selwyn Birchwood smallFEATURE: Interview with Selwyn Birchwood

It's no wonder this rising young blues star never stops smiling; his career is on a roll and for good reason.
100 Blues Books artFEATURE: Book Review -- 100 Books Every Blues Fan Should Own

100 Books is an informative and engaging look at blues literature, old and new, for blues aficionados.
Amy HartLIVE REVIEW: Amy Hart at Mayne Stage, Chicago

The former Chicago artist returned home for a show that featured the best of both Nashville and Windy City styles, plus originals and more.
Dave Specter verticleFEATURE: Interview with Dave Specter

Specter spent his youth learning and performing with blues legends. His new Delmark CD features one of them, Otis Clay. "Spec" recalls the lessons he learned from teachers Hubert Sumlin, Sam Lay and more.
Tom MarkerFEATURE: Interview with Tom Marker

WXRT DJ and Blues Breakers host has been keeping the blues alive since 1984. Tom explains how the blues bug first bit him and recalls legends he's met over the years.
Bobby Rush kicksFEATURE: Interview with Bobby Rush

The ever youthful soul-blues legend tells the truth about his life in show biz along with tall tales about preachin', sellin' cotton, playin' the chit'lin' circuit, Chicken Heads, other heads, shady record deals and the list goes on...
Bobby Rush small photoFEATURE: Bobby Rush's Grammy nod: A victory for The Blues

Muddy Waters tunesmith Terry Abrahamson celebrates Bobby's Grammy nomination with a nostalgic remembrance of "Chicken Heads". PART 1

Delmark 55th DVDREVIEWS:

CDs: Junior Wells, James Cotton, Mud Morganfield, Dave Specter, Dave Weld, Charlie Musselwhite, Holmes Bros., Nick Moss, Cash Box Kings, Big James, Buddy Guy, Magic Slim & more.

DVDs: JJ Grey & Mofro, Tail Dragger, Delmark's 55th Anniversary, Maxwell Street, Son Seals, Jimmy Burns & more.

LIVE BLUES:  Stevie Wonder, Etta James, B.B. King, Buddy Guy, Pinetop Perkins, Joss Stone, Ryan Shaw, Mavis Staples, Booker T & the MGs, John Nemeth, more.

Lonnie BrooksLIVE REVIEW: Lonnie Brooks 80th Birthday Bash at House of Blues

It's hard to believe the youthful bluesman is now 80. An all-star lineup turned out to celebrate with hosts Ronnie & Wayne Baker Brooks.
Chicago Slim wails guitar smallFEATURE: The Blues Doctor is in! Good guys wear black.

Dr. Dan Ivankovich, a.k.a. Chicago Slim, mends bones in the city's poorest 'hoods by day and plays the blues at night.
Mud Morganfield by JennFEATURE: Interview with Big Bill Morganfield

Blues is in the blood of this multi-talented award-winning singer, songwriter and guitarist who happens to be the son of Muddy Waters.
Donald KinseyFEATURE: Interview with Donald Kinsey

From Gary to Jamaica and back, musician Donald Kinsey keeps the music moving forward. The celebrated artist talks about his family band, Big Daddy, Bob Marley, Peter Tosh, Albert King and more.
Joanne Shaw Taylor live shotFEATURE: Interview with Joanne Shaw Taylor

British blues-rock artist Joanne Shaw Taylor is currently touring as part of Ruf Records Blues Caravan Tour.

The multi-talented young lady talks about her dream career so far, with more to come.
Liz Mandeville with frattoireFEATURE: Interview with Liz Mandeville

Renaissance woman Liz Mandeville was inducted into the Chicago Blues Hall of Fame in 2013. A year, prior she started her own record label and began a new path in her career as a blues singer, songwriter, guitarist, record label owner, author, speaker and painter.
Pierre LacocqueFEATURE: Interview with Mississippi Heat's Pierre Lacocque

Miss. Heat founder and harp player Lacocque isn't your typical blues man. He's lived all over the world, but never felt at home until he discovered the blues in Chicago. The band celebrates its 20th anniversary with a new CD on Delmark, and sets at Blues Fest 2013 and Delmark's annual Blues Brunch.
Buddy & Hopkins comic headshot FEATURE: Welcome Buddy and Hopkins!

The further misadventures of Buddy and  Hopkins are featured regularly on our website, thanks to talented artist Jason Nocera. Click on the photo to find out what kind of trouble they get into this month.
Magic Slim old photoLIVE REVIEW: A Night For Magic -- A Tribute to Magic Slim

It was a magical night at the Mayne Stage for one of the finest blues all-star lineups in recent memory, all playing to honor the late Morris "Magic Slim" Holt.
Alvin Lee smallFEATURE: Poetry by George Kalamaras

Our resident blues poet  pays homage to the recently departed guitar great Alvin Lee
Belly of the Blues book cover
FEATURE: Book Review
Terry Abrahamson's In the Belly of the Blues

 The author's life changing musical journey into “The Belly of The Blues” is chronicled through his iconic B&W photos and his written memoirs in this very enjoyable hardback.
Muddy & Stones Checkerboard DVDDVD/CD REVIEW:
Muddy Waters &

The Rolling Stones
Checkerboard Lounge -- Live Chicago 1981

More than a mere souvenir of this historic summit, this release stands up musically, proving that the Stones could more than hold their own with Chicago's king of the blues on his gritty home turf.
J.B. RitchieFEATURE: Interview with J.B. Ritchie

 J.B. Ritchie has been playing the blues for nearly five decades. His wild ride of a life story would make a great screenplay.

Lonnie Brooks small FEATURE: Interview with Lonnie Brooks

 Inducted into the Blues Hall of Fame in 2010, Lonnie Brooks is an international blues star. In Part 1 of a lengthy interview, he reminisces about his childhood in Louisiana and details a recent  recording session with his sons Ronnie and Wayne in Nashville.
Big Llou Johnson FEATURE: Interview with Big Llou Johnson

 "Bringing sexy back to the blues"

 The voice of B.B. King's Bluesville radio network releases his debut blues CD.
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Hambone's Blues Party on WDCB 90.9 FM
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