A double shot of the deepest Chicago and Texas blues–from the some of the biggest living legends of the genre are arriving in town this Sunday to play an afternoon all ages concert in Sacramento.“BLUES ON THE GREEN 2” stars The Blues Broads and the Nick Gravenites Band. Honored emcee is blues radio legend and harp man, Mick Martin.
Sunday, Sept. 26 The Green @ Capital Public Radio/ southernmost corner of Sac State University
7055 Folsom Ave./Sacramento Doors: 1 PM Showtime: 2 PM
With a wall of soul sound that could tumble Jericho, four powerful women singers stand at the front of the stage and make believers of every audience member. Rocking, scolding, testifying and torching, the Blues Broads are legendary singers Tracy Nelson (Mother Earth), Annie Sampson (Stoneground), Dorothy Morrison (Edwin Hawkins Singers) and Angela Strehli. Each one of them have had successful careers and led their own bands for decades. Nelson wrote her classic “Down So Low” which has been covered by Linda Ronstadt, Etta James, Maria Muldaur and Cyndi Lauper. Nelson, along with Janis Joplin and Lydia Pense have forever been noted as the three greatest voices that were discovered in San Francisco during the 1960s.
National Public Radio recently ran a “Weekend Edition” feature piece on Nelson on July 31, and she is set to release her 25th album in 2011. Morrison is the Grammy-winning lead singer of “O, Happy Day,” the only traditional gospel song ever to cross over and become a bone fide pop hit. Sampson starred in the long –running production of “Hair” and has recorded with Elvin Bishop, Taj Mahal, Buddy Miles, Maria Muldaur, Eddie Money and Country Joe MacDonald. The “Queen of Texas Blues,” Strehli worked with Stevie Ray Vaughan and every other Austin and Chicago blues player of note through her decades of guiding work with Antone’s –both the famous club and the record label. Now, as a vocal team with an all-star Bay Area backing band, including Nancy Wright on sax, these four women are having some of the most fun of their lives.
According to author and pop music critic Joel Selvin, Nick Gravenites is "the original San Francisco connection for the Chicago crowd." He was born in Chicago, but not in 1941, as the first lines of his classic blues manifesto, “Born in Chicago,” punch out in the legendary Paul Butterfield Blues Band’s signature song. The original white blues man of the rock era, he was hanging out in south side blues clubs in 1957. Singer and songwriter of other classics such as “East West” (with Michael Bloomfield), “You’re Killing My Love’ (Otis Rush), “Groovin’ is Easy” (Electric Flag), “Work Me Lord” and “Buried Alive in the Blues” (Janis Joplin). He sang lead in Bloomfield’s ill-fated super band, Electric Flag, an American Music Band, which made it much-hyped debut at the 1967 Monterey International Pop Festival.
His Columbia Records debut of 1969, My Labors, exhibits a batch of his best songs (“Killing My Love,” “Holy Moly,” and “Gypsy Good Time”) and some of Bloomfield’s most lyrical playing. With Bloomfield, he produced Otis Rush’s “Mourning in the Morning” in Muscle Shoals in 1968, James Cotton, and assembled Janis Joplin’s solo debut, The Kozmic Blues Band. He produced the debut Quicksilver Messenger Service album and Brewer and Shipley’s “One Toke Over the Line.” He replaced Joplin for a short stint in Big Brother and the Holding Company. Has recorded seven solo albums including, Animal Mind and Live in Athens with Quicksilver guitar god John Cipollina. Gravenites is as deep and as personal a blues songwriter and performer as there is, shouting the blues with the best of them. When Gravenites steps on stage with his band, all the gravitas and legacy of the great Chicago blues masters step on stage with him.
For details about the show and ticket information, visit the Swell Productions website at www.swell-productions.com.
Blankets and low back chairs only. No outside food or drink-there will be quality beer/wine and soul food catered by The Drooling Dog BBQ from Auburn, California.
~~ Mindy Giles is co-owner of Sacramento’s Swell Productions and is the co-promoter of this event.