Monday, June 13, 2016

Chicago Blues Fest 2016 My Favorite Moments

I've lived in the Chicago area for more than sixty years but until six years ago had never gone to Blues Fest down in Grant Park. No reason in particular I like music and everything but I just never made the fest. Once I started going I was hooked and now try and make it every year.

I like to go early and avoid the big crowds that come when the big acts perform in the evening. It's nice to wander around between the four or five stages and see a variety of acts and there's always someone playing. It's really a very pleasant way to spend an early summer afternoon or three. One time saving tip if your going to get tickets for food & drinks avoid the ticket booths locates as you first come in off Jackson. There's always eight million people waiting in line so walk into the fest area to one of the other booths where you won't find long lines, usually.

Anyway this year for the first time I went on all three days and had a great time. Even though it was scroching hot on Friday and Saturday there was a nice breeze so if you found some shade it was most comfortable. Like last year the folks from Red Baron pizza were giving away samples and this year there was a rib place giving out a free rib. Ya gotta love the free eats.

So here is my thumbnail sketch of this years blues fest. I've choosen one band from each day to feature. If you want to see all the videos I've uploaded check out ChiTownSoundz and take a look at ChiTownView as we have a few posted here.

There was a young guitarist Jamiah & The Red Machine who was kicking things off Friday morning at 11:00 that I wanted to see. So after getting off work at ten and meeting up with my good friend Tom we hightailed to the Blue Line and headed into the city. We missed the first couple tunes but good to see most of what was a pretty impressive set of blues rock from 21 year old Jamiah and his two younger cousins. He was quite the showman playing on one leg, behind his back and with his teeth at one point or another. I've included the final song of their set a blistering version of The Beatles "Come Together".

We have two more songs Jamiah and more from this years blues fest on ChiTownSoundz. There's also one more video posted on ChiTownView

Saturday was even hotter than Friday and before my pick to click of the day, Southern Komfort Brass Band, performed I had to sit through a marathon sound check. When you've got nine musicians there's a lot of sound to balance. But once they got the sound down the band delivered the goods. Here they are doing some Rick James.

Sunday was about twenty degrees cooler and some folks were even wearing sweaters but the music was still hot. Here we present veteran bluesman Donald Kinsey & The Kinsey Report doing Bob Marley's "Were Jammin'". Donald was for a time in the 70's a guitarist for both Marley & Peter Tosh. Both pit stops on a musical journey that started in the late 1960's. 

Hmm three days of highlights all non blues songs. Just goes to show you that blues music has roots that spread way beyond it's origins. See you next year.

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