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2019 Waterfront Blues Festival Preview.

By all accounts, last year’s Waterfront Blues Festival was a smash – another beautiful Fourth of July weekend run along the Willamette River. What many don’t know is the underlying turmoil that nearly closed the gates for good. Festival ownership changes, management shakeups, and new sponsors and beneficiaries – all late in the game – put the fest on the brink...

The good news is the 2019 version, set for July 4-7 at Tom McCall Waterfront Park, is on firm footing and firing on all cylinders. Even as operating costs skyrocket and shifting demographics continue to alter the music landscape in general, the fest’s heartbeat is strong and, per its long history, remains rooted in and deeply committed to the music.

Unlike other major festivals, the backbone of the WBF has always been a strong inclusion of top-flight local and regional acts, many of whom have built strong careers here and gone on to greater heights. This year is no exception.

Familiar names include Alligator Records artist Curtis Salgado, Portland’s own MarchFourth marching band, guitarist and producer Terry Robb, former Portlander and now Nashville resident Big Monti Amundson, the mighty Andy Stokes (who recently landed on the Billboard charts), Arietta Ward (daughter of the late, legendary Janice Scroggins) debuting with her own band, Farnell Newton and his Othership Connection James Brown tribute show, soul and worldbeat vocalist Lilla, acclaimed guitarist and vocalist Mary Flower, saxman and New Orleans expat Reggie Houston, the young and talented Samuel E-M (Eisen-Meyer) and his boundary-pushing band Joyful Noise, the legendary Ural Thomas, the mesmerizing Saeeda Wright (Prince’s former backup vocalist) debuting her own project, Washington’s Tim “Too Slim” Langford and his Tail Draggers, Seattle’s Birch Pereira and the Gin Joints, LaRhonda & the Steele Family Band, Ty Curtis and Karen Lovely.

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Curtis Salgdo

MarchFourth marching band

2 Days Events

  • June 15, 2019 5:00 pm
    Terry Robb
    Trinity Vineyards
  • June 15, 2019 6:00 pm
    Solo Acoustic Lloyd Jones
    Ilani/Line & Lure Restaurant
  • June 15, 2019 6:45 pm
    Brady Goss
    Northwood Public House
  • June 15, 2019 7:00 pm
    Billy D. & the Hoodoos
    The Vault at Gastro Mania (was O'Connors)
  • June 15, 2019 7:00 pm
    Johnny Wheels & the Swamp Donkeys
    Kathken Vineyards
  • June 15, 2019 8:00 pm
    Bottleneck Blues Band
    Fort Hill Public House
  • June 15, 2019 8:00 pm
    James Clem "CD Release"
    Corkscrew Wine Bar
  • June 15, 2019 8:00 pm
    Soul Vaccination
    Trail's End Saloon
  • June 15, 2019 9:00 pm
    Bob Shoemaker
    Skyway Bar & Grill
  • June 15, 2019 9:00 pm
    The Joanne Broh Band featuring Garry Meziere
    Blue Diamond
  • June 15, 2019 9:00 pm
    The Norman Sylvester Band
    Mac's Restaurant & Lounge
  • June 15, 2019 9:30 pm
    Kevin Selfe and The Tornadoes
    Double Mountain Brewery
  • June 16, 2019 4:00 pm
    Steve Cheseborough
    Upright Brewing
  • June 16, 2019 5:00 pm
    Bayou Boyz with Dan Berkery
    Spirits Pub
  • June 16, 2019 6:00 pm
    Kevin Selfe Blues Jam
    Blue Diamond
  • June 16, 2019 6:00 pm
    Robbie Laws Jam
    Trail's End Saloon
  • June 16, 2019 7:00 pm
    Billy D.
    McMenamins Edgefield
  • June 16, 2019 9:00 pm
    Bolt Upright Sunday Jam
    Montavilla Station
  • June 16, 2019 9:30 pm
    Bayou Boyz w/surprise guests
    Hotel Rose

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