Hair Flare for the Blues
Kenny Wayne Shepherd produces a major hair flare as he turns in one of his consistently stellar performances during the 2015 Blues Music Awards in Memphis, Tennessee, on May 7. Kenny Wayne hit the Blues scene like a ton of bricks as a 16-year-old two decades ago. He’s been nominated for five Grammys® and has garnered numerous awards as a testament to his talent.
Sunday, May 10, 2015
Pine Buff, Arkansas
Every May for the last 36 years, the cream of the crop among Blues musicians is recognized at the Blues Music Awards in Memphis. It’s sort of the ‘Academy Awards’ of the Blues — with little of the pretentious atmosphere of the California movie scene. The superstars, candidates for awards, former winners, and everyone else take the same escalators and sit down to dinner in the same room.
The Bishop of Blues
Elvin Bishop now pushing 73. His band garnered a bucketful of awards, primarily because of their latest album ‘Can’t even do wrong right.’ If you were around in the mid-seventies, you will probably remember Bishop's hit single ‘Fooled Around And Fell In Love.’.
Proffering of the awards is sandwiched betwixt and between sets of Blues instrumentalists, bands, and vocalists beginning at 6:30 p.m. and running full speed until the last hurrah at about 1:00 the next morning. Some of the award winners are the performers, but not necessarily. The event is organized and produced by The Blues Foundation.
Beltin' the Blues
From left: Jimmy Bott, 'Monster' Mike Welch, Sugaray Rayford, Bob Corritore, Willy J. Campbell, and Anthony Geraci have the crowd on the edge of their seats. The band leader, Sugar Ray Norcia, is on stage but not in the picture. Sugaray Rayford joined the band for this set.
Blues superstars are a different lot than the prima-donna pretenders of other performance venues. Blues musicians, for the most part, are as ‘common as your foot.’ They eschew snobbiness and embrace friendliness. After all, their music is the dirt-under-the-fingernails-rubber-meets-the-road art form risen from cotton patches and dirt roads in the South.
Rollickin' the Blues
Mouth Harp Winner: Charley Musselwhite (on the right), winner of the “Instrumentalist, Harmonica” award for 2015, 2014 and many other times, is rollickin' the crowd with his unique style. Unfortunately, we were unable to grab the name of his guitarist, but he went on a ride that had the crowd in the palms of his hands.
Dave and Phil Alvin make for a dynamic acoustic guitar duo. The big screen in the back makes for a cool image..
The Hall Opens Its Doors.
The day after the Blues Music Awards, the Blues Foundation opened the doors of the new Blues Hall of Fame for the first time. This lady is perusing one of the fine exhibits.
But wait, there’s more.
See more of our personal picks
from the Blues Music Awards
at Weekly Grist for the Eyes and Mind,
including this picture of blues gentle giant Sugaray Rayford. We sneaked in an archive video as well. Click, go and enjoy.