The Tornadoes (AKA – ‘A Selfless Act’)
Hello Blues lovers! Just a note to say thank you to our loyal fans and blues jammers!

Allen Markel and I (Don Shultz) have been holding down the fort along with our special guest musicians while our fearless leader Kevin Selfe is away. We appreciate your continued support and patronage of this fine venue, The Blue Diamond. I am excited about July’s special guest line-up as we will have Kevin Selfe back on 7/2, then Ken Brewer on 7/9, AC Porter,on 7/16, Ben Rice on 7/23, and Doug Rowell on 7/30. We are looking forward to seeing you there on Sundays from 6 to 9 PM!

Lisa Mann
Hey blues peeps!  Lisa Mann here, letting you know what’s up for July.  I’m looking forward to playing in a bunch of showcases this Waterfront Blues Fest, including the Sail on Sister Cruise, with Sonny Hess and the incredible Claudette King.  She’s BB King’s youngest daughter, and she is keeping his musical talent alive and well into the future.  Be sure and get tickets to at least one of the Delta Music Experience cruises, you’ll appreciate the camaraderie AND the air conditioning.  Money raised on the Blues Cruises will go to the Oregon Food Bank, just the rest of the fest.

Of course there’s musical magic every year, however the Waterfront Blues Fest is also host to some important causes and services.  Visit the Health Net Pavilion for FREE health screenings blood pressure, visual sight, glaucoma, diabetes and hearing.  Caring Ambassadors does Hepatitis testing as part of these screenings, so if you’ve ever wondered if you might have contracted it in the past, get checked!  I have heard personal testimony from folks who have gotten treatment after getting screened at Waterfront.  So take a few minutes out of your fun day to gain some peace of mind.  Also, there will be 12 Step meetings every morning at 11am at the Health Pavilion too.  You can find the Pavilion on the map they hand out at the gate.

My band won’t be appearing at the fest, however we have gigs in Portland, Boise, Salem and more, and will be performing an important fundraiser on Sat July 29th.  Catfish Lou’s is hosting us for their “Play it Forward” campaign, we will be raising funds for Mercy Corps NW’s Reentry Transition Center.  This program helps people transitioning out of the prison system find jobs, housing, drug/alcohol treatment and so much more.  Help give folks a second chance at a new life by joining us!
Happy summer, everybody!

Lisa Mann

I hope everyone has a blast at this year’s Blues Fest! I’ll be working at the massage booth Fri. June 30th 3PM-6:30PM and Monday July 3rd 11AM-3:30PM. Half of your donations go to the Oregon Food Bank!

Also, thanks to all the folks that showed up for the 6th Anniversary of the Bolt Upright Jam at Montavilla Station this past month! Thanks go out to my co-hosts over the years and to all the fantastic jammers/dancers/and blues supporters that continue to show up and partake in our tribal stomp! Montavilla Station, 417 SE 80th, 9PM-1:30AM is the place. I hope we have another 6 years into the future there! Enjoy the summer!

Bottleneck Blues Band
July will be busy month for Bottleneck Blues Band. They are spending the entire month playing shows out of Portland. They start July with a three day run first stopping in Maupin at The Riverside playing in the desert, then journeying on to John’s Alley in Moscow, ID, then reaching their final destination The Wallace, ID Blues Festival where they are a featured act. The band will return to Hood River and perform at one of their favorite venues The River City Saloon which is always a great fun filled evening. Bottleneck is happy to be adding The Cowlitz County Fair to their show list this July 28th. The band has been working hard on the material for their upcoming album Storm Bringer. Currently, some of the new tunes have made it into their live set and have been well received from audiences. Please visit us on line at or come to a show and see Randy Monroe, Franklin Spicer, Nathan Powell and Noah Bell live. Thanks CBA!

Catfish Lous
Catfish Lou’s is celebrating it’s 6-month anniversary in July!  Time goes by quickly when an amazing journey is combined with a ton of fun!

We have met so many great people that I couldn’t begin to name half of them here, but we’d like to send a special thank you to a few people that have been at Catfish Lou’s since the beginning and set a musical foundation from which we have grown.

Robbie Laws & Jolie Clausen play their hearts out every Wednesday and Thursday for our jam sessions.  If you think that jam sessions are only for the artists, then you I recommend you check out the shows that they’ve each put together, and I promise you’ll think differently.  You’ll become a jam-fan like us!  Robbie has a heart of gold, he’s a “hoot”, and this cat can play! In fact, we have a video of him in the kitchen using a whisk as a guitar slide! (Did I mention we like to have fun?!) His weekly sets include everyone from Sheila Wilcoxson, Karen Lovely, and more. Jolie Clausen introduced many musicians to our venue when she, Whit Draper and Newell C. Briggs, began Jolie’s Wednesday Jam. When she picks up those sticks, all the musicians come out of the woodwork to play.  A big thank you to the both of you for bringing us quality music week-after-week and believing in the vision we have for Catfish Lou’s.

Likewise, Terry Robb & Ben Rice have brought a collage of collaborations to the stage every Monday since the beginning.  They sometimes play solo, but often bring a variety of duos and trio to kick the week off with intense, rootsy, bluesy, soulful, jazzy, sounds you won’t hear anywhere else on a Monday night!

Lloyd “Have Mercy” Jones, Norman “Boogie Cat” Sylvester, Andy Stokes, LaRhonda Steele – These are all names you’ll recognize from their decades of creating amazing music Portland metro area.  To borrow a word from Lloyd Jones, it’s SUPER groovy that they are now bringing their awesomeness to Catfish Lou’s.

Recently, Lloyd Jones came to us with the idea of doing a fundraiser for Curtis Salgado.  He’d donate his time and his tip jar (the “love bucket”) and ticket sales.  All we had to do was provide a place for people to gather, great tasting food, and a rocking sound system. No problem on our part. Brilliant, generous and thoughtful on Lloyd’s part. We donated a percentage of sales to the cause and were so impressed by the outpouring of support we thought, “we can do more”. As a result, “Catfish Lou’s Playing It Forward” monthly fundraiser events were launched.  Keep an eye on our website and Facebook page for your favorite artists and their charities of choice.

Looking forward to the next six months!

Michelle & Michael
Owners of Catfish Lous

Billy D & The Hoodoos
Hey Everyone.. it’s Billy D & The Hoodoos coming out of Winter Hibernation.. Lo & Behold we’ve got a busy Summer.. The Gorge Fest and Opening Day of The Safeway Waterfront Fest right here in Beautiful NW Oregon in June .. followed by a Trip to Cosmic Santa Fe in July, Walla Walla & Chicago in August &  finally California in Oct.. Pretty Awesome.. also after many years of being our go to guy for Bass & Vocal duties “Dapper” Joe Casimir.. the best I’ve ever worked with is retiring from “full time “ duty with us but will come back once in awhile to help out .. he and his  better 1/2  June Howell also a great singer(Actually two of the kindest and best peeps you can ever hope to meet) will be riding off into as many Sunsets as They Can & enjoying their retirements together.. Thank U Joey!!! His last official show with us will be Saturday Aug 19 @ O’Connors Vault.. so please come out and hang with Joe that night .. truly one of the finest anywhere!!!
Keep Rockin!!!
Billy D

Karen Lovely
I’m sitting here in a van heading north to Canada with 2x BMA Winner “Best Bass” Lisa Mann, her husband bassist Allen Markel, drummer Dave Melyan, and IBC “St Blues” Winner for Best Guitar is driving.

Lisa, Ben, Dave, and I have been talking about what a great time we had at our recent sold out shows in Basel, Switzerland, and how excited we are to be performing together again this weekend.  We are all really stoked to be playing again on the main stage at the Waterfront Blues Festival, Opening Day, 6/30.

Playing with Lisa, Ben, Dave, and guitar player Mark Bowden is a musical experience like no other…

For the past year, we’ve been fortunate to have done a number of shows together…in Arizona, California, Florida, Washington, Switzerland, and best of all, our hometown of Portland, OR.

The collective joy, creative energy, and connectedness of the band, shows. The Cascade Blues Association membership honored us with a “Performance of the Year” award for last year’s Waterfront Festival set.

It was a killer set…and with Special Guest Jim Pugh sitting in on B3 for the last half of the set, it was simply over the top good.

I can’t wait to play with this band again at the 2017 Waterfront Festival.  Joining us this year, will be Joe McCarthy on trumpet, Robert “Lefty” Head on fiddle, and the Lowrider Band’s percussionist Chuk Barber.

What’s especially exciting for me, and songwriting partner, Mark Bowden, is that we’ll be playing some of original material we wrote for my new album Fish Outta Water– which just debuted at #13 on the Billboard Blues Album chart.

See you, June 30th!

You can also catch my band 7/10 at Holliday Park for a free concert, courtesy the City of Portland, and at Catfish Lou’s, the city’s hip new blues club, on July 14th.

Dave Fleschner
Hello Blues Fans,

I’ve played the Blues Festival as a sideman for years with a number of different bands.  I think I first played a noon show with Gary Burford in the late 90’s, then went on to work with Chris Mayther, Kathy Walker, Karen Lovely, Curtis Salgado and Duffy Bishop. I proudly display my Muddy Award in my studio for the year that the Curtis Salgado Band won the Muddy for Best Performance.  I got to back up Phillip Walker, Andrew ‘Junior Boy Jones’ And Sherman Robertson for a Freddie King Tribute (Jimmy Bott and Willie Barber were killing as the rhythm section – Renato Caranto was amazing on Tenor sax). I have to thank the Waterfront Blues Fest for giving me so many great and memorable opportunities to play music over the years.

This year I’m extremely honored to be leading a tribute to Paul Delay.  I played with Paul just a handful of times, but his influence on me and the Portland music world is immeasurable.  His creativity within the genre has been an inspiration for me, and countless other musicians – not only from Portland, but around the world.  We’re going to have a who’s who of killer musicians paying tribute to Paul’s legacy: Andy Stokes, LaRhonda Steele, Saeeda Wright, Lisa Mann, Hank Shreve, Carlton Jackson, Ben Rice, Freddy Trujillo and myself.  Special guest Duffy Bishop will be revisiting a duet that she did with Paul – just a few years ago.  I can’t thank the WBF and Peter Dammann enough for all the work they do to put this amazing festival on – and for inviting me to be a part of it.

I’m excited to be playing a variety of other shows at the blues fest this year as well.  First off, I’ll be playing the DME Blues Brunches with United By Music North America every morning at the Hotel Rose from 11:00 to 1:00.  We have a brand new set of music, made up largely of the music of our guest mentors (from Marcia ball to Keb Mo’), that will showcase styles from the gutter to the swamp, somehow also maintaining a really positive vibe.  Expect some seriously heavy hitters to be showing up as guests at these Delta Music Experience “blues brunches.”

On the 3rd, look out for a special guest appearance from me on a secret stage to be named later.  I played with this band somewhere in Washington a few years ago, and I think they are building a super secret tunnel to the stage from somewhere under a volcano.

On the 4th of July, United by Music will take the stage at Noon, then I’ll do the Paul Delay Tribute at 2:00.  There will be an interview Q&A Session about Paul at 5:00 on the Crossroads stage, and then I finish out the evening with the Duffy Bishop Band.  This band has been playing around the Northwest this month, and I think we’re playing really genuine music.  Duffy sings from her heart, and that inspires all of us to play with the same zeal for life.

I’m grateful to be able to keep company with all these amazing artists, and what better way to celebrate the 4th of July than with a big helping of American music.

Thank you all for supporting me and all the great artists in this town.  This American music is what makes America great.

Dave Fleschner


Lloyd “Have Mercy” Jones

Bringing out the “LOVE BUCKET” for our friend and yours… Curtis Salgado.

Curtis had to cut his east coast tour short for an emergency triple bypass heart surgery recently! Due to the fact that he has incurred massive medical bills and can’t work right now to even pay his normal bills, I’d like to invite ya’ll to show your love by coming out to Catfish Lou’s (2460 NW 24th Ave., Portland) Thursday June 8 and putting whatever funds you can afford into the “LOVE BUCKET” for our pal Curtis Salgado. 100% of what you contribute will go directly to him.

Curtis is healing nicely and hoping to be back at work in July. If we can help even a little let’s do it. After all he has made us feel good for a mighty long time.

BTW – I’ve been diggin’ on the new acoustic recording Curt & Alan Hagar just finished…over, and over, and over again. It’s fantastic!

Also, “The All Star Band” playing for you on June 8 will record June 11 as the brainchild of Boyd Small & Willy Barber. Such guests as Louis Pain, Peter Dammann, Big Monti and myself. Others are welcome join in on Thursday night as well.

Hope you can help.


Lloyd “Have Mercy” Jones


Lady True Blue & Sonny Hess

“Lady True Blue” Lady Kat and Sonny Hess announce the CD release of Soul Barin’ Blues with a special celebration to be held on Saturday, July 1 at the Safeway Albertsons Waterfront Blues Festival

Lady True Blue – Lady Kat – Low, Rich, Full Bodied Voice’ that carries the likes of Etta James, with a little of Wynonna’s twang, and the depth of Della Reese! Born and raised in the Northwest she was surrounded by the sounds of Blues and Country music.

Although starting out her music career at a later age in life Lady Kat has the style performance and sound of a well-seasoned artist. Spreading her wings to venture forth to pursue her dream as a national, even global blues artist, Lady Kat “Lady True Blue” has been showcased in phenomenal groups like the Northwest Women Rhythm & Blues, Celebration of BB King Show, playing with Portland’s finest musicians and was a favorite at Jimmy Mak’s Club. The past eight years Lady Kat has been performing at the Safeway Waterfront Blues Festival. She has shared the stage with Fiona Boyes, Linda Hornbuckle, Janice Scroggins, Duffy Bishop, Lady A, & Ellen Whyte, Sonny Hess, Lisa Mann to mention a few. This year at the Safeway Albertsons Blues Festival “Lady True Blue” brings her own show to the main stage debuting the release of her first CD.

Her first CD offers a lyrically powerful original “Soul Barin’ Blues” the title cut. “True Blue”, a song written by Sonny Hess as a gift to Lady Kat, Lady True Blue and in return a bluesy rendition of “Drift Away” dedicated to Sonny, to mention a few. There are several top-notch Portland musicians featured on various songs.

“The Gift of Song truly is a gift of power. A singer should cherish and respect it! For you never know who’s out there watching and listening and taking away a memory of your gift. It is my mission to respect and represent the art of music.”  – “Lady True Blue”


Lloyd “Have Mercy” Jones

Winter is OVER. Everything is new again!

Before I get started though, I must continue to think good thoughts and send all our love to Curtis Salgado! After all he has given us, we gladly cheer him on to a quick and strong recovery on his triple bypass surgery. With all those new belts & hoses, he’ll be good for another 300,000 miles easy!

Returning from a fantastic (and productive) trip to Nashville, I’m excited and honored to be a guest at Cal Scott’s “Songwriters Showcase” Monday, April 3, at O’Connor’s in Multnomah Village, 7pm.

These are truly creative and inspiring events that are not to be missed. Bringing some new notes for this one. Great shows this month: April 15, at Hwy 99 in Seattle with LaRhonda Steele; and a wonderful fundraiser here in Portland on April 22 that Norman Sylvester does every year at the NoPo Eagles. Gotta love the “Boogie Cat”!

Saving the best for last… on Saturday April 29…I’ve got three reasons for ya’ll to come out to “Catfish Lou’s”!

1) Catfish Lou’s is a fantastic new club here in Portland that you should see (2460 NW 24th Ave. PDX)
2) It’s a “Birthday Party”
3) Lots of special guests and crazy fun!

Happy Spring,
Lloyd “Have Mercy”


Norman Sylvester Band

Besides our nightclub performances, Norman would like Portland’s blues lovers to know about two upcoming bigger shows. The Inner City Blues Festival was a popular, annual event sponsored by the Portland Rainbow Coalition that began with the “Jam for Jesse” Jackson presidential campaign in 1988, in the old Royal Esquire Club on NE Alberta Street. The Rainbow Coalition continued the festival series through 2003. True to the spirit of the Rainbow Coalition, in 2012 Health Care For All Oregon revived the Inner City Blues Festival with the goal of making known HCAO’s mission to vote-in a universal, affordable, single-payer healthcare system for all Oregonians, and ultimately, all Americans.

This year’s Inner City Blues Festival, the 6th Annual Healing the Healthcare Blues, will return to the North Portland Eagles Lodge April 22, 6:00 pm till 12:00 am, doors open 5:30. The 2017 lineup features two stages of entertainment with the Lloyd “Have Mercy” Jones Band, Steve Cheseborough, Mary Flower, Tevis Hodge Jr., the Strange Tones with the Volcano Vixens, Bloco Alegria, Obo Addy Legacy Drummers, Shoehorn the tap-dancing sax player, the Doo Doo Funk All Stars, rapper Mic Crenshaw, the Mad as Hell Doctors and the Norman Sylvester Band with Lenanne Sylvester Miller, and the Boogie Cat Horns, Peter Moss and Shoehorn Conley. The festival will be simulcast live on KBOO radio, on the airwaves at 90.7fm, and streaming worldwide at

The address of the North Portland Eagles Lodge is 7611 N. Exeter, one block west of Portsmouth on Lombard Street, Portland OR 97203. Cost of admission is $20 in advance, or $25 at the door. All proceeds go to support Health Care For All Oregon. Food and drinks including adult beverages are available, must be 21. Advance ticket sales at Music Millennium, Musician’s Union Local 99, Geneva’s Shear Perfection, Peninsula Station, Cascade Blues Association meetings, or online at This show has always sold out, plan accordingly.

Friday June 2, Boogie Cat Productions presents the Phenomenal Concert at the Alberta Rose. This unique night of music traces the journey of American music from Africa to the Mississippi Delta and beyond. The art forms of blues and gospel music have been used for communication and inspiration since the days of slavery. Performances by Portland artists will illustrate music from the cradle of birth in Africa, the cotton fields of the Mississippi Delta, and our urban cities. Join us for this healing music celebration.


  • The blues history journey
  • Chata Addy “African drumming and dance”
  • Norman Sylvester, LaRhonda Steele and Lenanne Sylvester “Down home gospel”
  • Tevis Hodge Jr. “Back porch delta blues and ragtime”
  • Norman Sylvester quartet with Bill Rhoades “Chicago blues”
  • Video  A sneak preview of Jeff Dodge Visual Service’s project “Tales from Old Portland”
  • Rhythm and blues, funk and soul concert
  • The Norman Sylvester Revue featuring LaRhonda Steele, Lenanne Sylvester Miller, and the Boogie Cat horns, Renato Caranto & Peter Moss.
  • Finale Chata Addy, Tevis Hodge Jr. & Bill Rhoades jam with the big band

The address of the Alberta Rose Theater is 3000 NE Alberta Street, Portland OR 97211. Showtime is 8:00 pm till 11:00, doors open at 7:00. Food and drinks including adult beverages are available, minors must be accompanied by a parent. Admission price is $20. Advance tickets recommended, online at, by phone (503) 764-4131 or at the box office. Box office is open one hour before any Alberta Rose show.


Steve Cheseborough

All right! There is finally going to be a grave marker for the great Bo Carter, one of the best guitarists and lyricists in blues history — make that in American music history of any genre.

Carter was one of the stars of the 1930s blues scene, selling records like crazy and recording hit after hit during the depths of the Great Depression, and doing it without moving out of his home in rural Mississippi. He also managed, and often played with, the Mississippi Sheiks, featuring his brother Lonnie Chatmon on violin.

I became enthralled with Mr. Carter’s music many years ago, after picking up a Yazoo collection of his just because I liked the look of his National guitar on the cover photo. Little did I know I would get to play that guitar someday, as I worked on my master’s thesis on Carter and his music as a Southern Studies student at the University of Mississippi in the late 1990s.

And soon I’ll get to talk, sing and play at the dedication of a marker on Bo Carter’s grave, sometime this summer. The Mount Zion Foundation, which has cleaned up many abandoned rural graveyards and placed many stones, has raised the funds to do that for Bo Carter’s grave in Nitta Yuma, Mississippi. (I know there are many worthy charities vying for your donation budget, but if you want to chip in to help with this and other blues-headstone projects, look up the Mount Zion Foundation and send them a few bucks.) And they have invited me to be part of the ceremony, to my honor and delight.

Come hear me at any of my Portland appearances and I’ll be happy to play you a Bo Carter tune or three or four, anytime! And if you want to learn how to play his beautiful music yourself, ask about my Blues & Beer Class!

Steve Cheseborough


Harvey Brindell & The Tablerockers

A Band Taking Shape

It’s about a shared vision. And that obviously goes well beyond the genre of music you want to play. For a band to become a cohesive unit there’s all sorts of other issues to consider. How often do you want to play? How many days of the week are you available to play? How far are you willing to travel to play? How important is the amount of money you make playing? Will one person make the decisions for the band or will it be a democracy? Are you willing to put this band’s schedule ahead of other gigs you may be offered? And finding the right people to answer those and other questions in a way that fits your own vision is a difficult task at best.

I arrived in Portland about a year and a half ago with the intent of putting a band together, booking gigs, and playing. I had been playing in Lincoln, NE, with essentially the same players for the past twenty five years and knew that part of our success was our like-mindedness about what we wanted to do and our ability to get along with and support each other in pursuit of doing that. I figured if I could find players in Portland with similar interests I could recreate what I had in Lincoln. It became clear quickly that wasn’t going to happen. I realized that if I wanted to play, out of necessity, Harvey Brindell and The Tablerockers would need to be an ever-changing line-up of available players. I really didn’t see a permanent line-up happening any time soon.

Enter Ray Beltran on harmonica and Ashbolt Stewart on drums. Ray and Ashbolt were a couple of the guys that I had been hiring to play gigs with me. Somewhere along the line we became friends and it became clear after much discussion that we are like-minded about what we want to do, that we share a vision.

Now those of you that have been following my ramblings might recall that a couple of months ago I wrote a piece about a bass playing friend and longtime bandmate from Lincoln NE, Dave “Shakey” Wagner coming to Portland and doing some gigs with me. Well that happened in October and Dave’s experience in Portland was so positive that he has decided to move here. Dave plans to get here in February. So suddenly, and much to my amazement, Harvey Brindell & The Tablerockers has taken shape. Harvey Brindell-guitar/vocals, Ray Beltran-Harmonica/vocals, Dave “Shakey” Wagner-Bass/vocals, and Ashbolt Stewart-drums/vocals. You can read the bios on each of these players on the BIO page of our website at:

We’re Harvey Brindell & The Tablerockers. We play Chicago Blues. Come out and give us a listen.


Lloyd Jones

After surviving the wild and “chilly” holidays, We’re going south “where the weather suits our clothes”… Jamaica!! That’s right baby, as a guest on Delbert McClinton’s “Sandy Beach’s Cruise” we plan to find plenty of trouble to get in. Already planning to butt-in with Teresa James, Anson Funderberg, Jimmy Hall, Marcia Ball, and untold new friends. As Delbert say’s himself… “we’re just here to have a good time and play some good music.” Excellent idea!

Lloyd Jones
Groove Merchant


Lloyd Jones

Yes, it’s holiday season and I’m delighted to spend it with special friends (like you) at Jimmy Mak’s  Saturday, December, 17. Santa may drop in for a minute to sing with his sweet angels: Teresa James, LaRhonda Steele, and Lisa Mann. Don’t miss this one!

After the New Year Teresa and I will head south to Join Delbert McClinton’s “Sandy Beaches” cruise January 5-13. Then up to Canada in February. Yippes, it’s gonna be a crazy year already!!

 Lloyd Jones

Groove Merchant


The Thunder Brothers

Hey Thunderheads,

We would like to thank the Cascade Blues Association for awarding the Muddy Waters Award for “Best New Act” to The Thunder Brothers this year. The CBA provides a central hub for this amazing music community that we have here in Portland. Thank you CBA board and members for all that you do to keep this music that we all love thriving. It takes a village to raise an idiot, or something like that, and we, The Thunder Brothers, have our own amazing village. Thank you Thunderheads for your endless and enthusiastic support, and thank you Andree and Walt for all that you do to keep this storm raging. Congratulations to our fellow nominees and all of the Muddy Award winners this year.

We want to send a big Thunderthanks out to Dr Jane Manning KBOO (Portland OR), Squrl Music KMSW (Hood River and The Dalles OR), and The Mighty Mouth Blues show NWCZ (Tacoma WA) for spinning The Thunder Brothers EP. Send us an email or facebook message if you hear us playing on another station.

Greg Johnson has written a deluge of a review of The Thunder Brothers EP that was published in the November edition of the BluesNotes. You can read that review here… Thank you Greg for your kind words.

There is a winter storm warning for The Trails End Saloon in Oregon City OR on December 9th. The Thunder Brothers will bring on a holiday storm with Jr. Thunder Ben Rice opening the set with his lightning fast acoustic riffs. This is a CBA sponsored event so CBA members will receive a discount at the door. Just present your membership card. Reservations are highly recommended for this event. The show starts at 8:30. The Trails End Saloon, 1320 Main St, Oregon City, (503)656 3031.

As always, you can check for Thunder storms in your area, order Thunderwear, and get the latest storm news on our web site And if you haven’t done it already, drop by The Thunder Brothers facebook page and give us a like. Http://


Billy D & The Hoodoos

Hello bluz lovers It’s finally here, our first CD, Somethin’s Wrong, came out almost six years ago and has done very well for us. Our New CD, Overnight Success, will be released on New Year’s Eve at The Trails End Saloon in Oregon City and we’re thinking it will be every bit as good as its predecessor. An actual old school straight blues song on this one, a handful of bluzrockers, a sweet ballad, and a bunch of slide guitar rave-ups. Music and dancing to commence about 8:30pm. Please c’mon out and dance into 2017 with us and our new CD. We so appreciate all the support over the last few years since we’ve been in PDX…best damn blues town anywhere!!!

See you soon and keep rockin’ my friends!!!

Billy D


Strange Tones

Season’s Greetings Music Lovers!

We’re very excited to announce that we’re continuing the Crime-A-Billy Christmas tradition this year with two shows, and we’ll be featuring a brand new Strange Tones vintage holiday TV special, “A Mysterious Encounter on Crime-A-Billy Mountain”. This short film kicks off a festive evening of live music, multimedia entertainment, original video backdrops, and unbridled merriment!

Joining us in the festivities will be our partners, the lovely Volcano Snow Vixens and a large cast of top-notch musicians, along with a variety of Crime-A-Billy Christmas characters. Yes, yes, keep your eyes and ears tuned in for the likes of Fiddlin’ Jim Toussaint, Randy Yearout, Tracey Fordice, Jim Wallace, Elvin Alfred Priestly, giant gingerbread men and nutcrackers, a jolly fellow who likes to wear red, and more.

Along with our many guests, this multimedia show is sprinkled with treats and surprises that just might give you a refreshing, warm and fuzzy feeling inside. At least, that’s what has been reported to us by previous Crime-A-Billy Christmas show attendees! We especially like this quote that we found on the website Evensi: “Incredible show…song, dance, choreography…should play to 5,000 people at $50/each…it’s that good! Reliving it now with Christmas CD.”

At any rate, we like playing more intimate venues for this particular event and are happy to have a show at Duff’s Garage on Dec. 9 and another show at the Skyway in Zigzag on Dec. 17. The Duff’s show will have advance tickets available at ticket, and we’d like folks to consider bringing two cans of food for Oregon Food Bank. This is a CBA co-sponsored event, and there will be a $2 discount for card carrying CBA members.

Sending a very Happy Holidays to everyone!

Guitar Julie, Andy Strange, Suburban Slim, & Andy Gauthier


David Kahl

I’d like to thank you all for honoring me with Muddy Awards for Bass and Lifetime Achievement. It’s been nearly 50 years since I first publicly performed and there are times when I can definitely feel it. I’d like to think that you aren’t recognizing what I do, so much as what I’ve tried to do and why. For this, I thank you, but I’d rather have your help than to have your praise.

During the course of my career, I’ve seen a lot of changes in both the music business and in society, the vast majority not good. In the face of adversity, the response of this community, musicians and fans, alike, has been affirming. We have pulled together to help others in need; you’ve even done so for me and my wife, Lynn, but the question remains — what can we do to help others, especially struggling, but talented musicians, even as we help ourselves? How do we relieve their daily burden, allowing them to focus their attention and talents to the gifts that they offer to rest of us? For artists, it’s getting tougher to make a living here in Portland, let alone to try and get by. I personally know of too many who have had to rely on not only benefits and crowdfunding, but on social services and second jobs, who have had to drastically change their living situations, verging on homelessness, who are several paychecks away from losing it all, or who have just given up and chucked it all in. Portland now stands the real chance of losing the creative forces, the community that has traditionally defined its character and a key reason for its livability.

It takes more than just wanting things to change for the better. It takes creative thinking, hard work, and, where resources are limited, resourcefulness. Every problem implies a solution. The more complex the problems, the more creative the solution must be. With this in mind, I’ve put together a plan, the Creative Cooperative Program, which holistically addresses a wide range of issues, from housing, to education, food insecurity, health and wellness, work spaces, business development and operations, and a whole slew of others. Modeled on a variation of food pods, these cultural pods would have high impact in a small footprint, set up on sites in several neighborhoods, plug their educational expertise into local schools, and create after school, weekend, and summer programs for area youth. Musicians and their families may have needs, but they are not needy; they’re a resource.

This is what I’m asking of you – help to make this a reality. Then I can feel like I’ve actually earned my award.

And, while I’m asking, please help support venues and bands. A couple gigs that happen to be pretty important to me are at Blackwell’s, on Wednesdays, 8:30-11:30pm, with Soul Cookin’ – Lloyd Jones, Brian Foxworth, and special guests – and on Sundays, 5:00-8:00pm,  with the Bayou Boyz – Mark Shark Schatzkamer, Steve Kerin, and Brian Foxworth. Of course, I’m playing bass.

David Kahl



Harvey Brindell & The Tablerockers

Booking Your Band Part 1 “The Following”

Booking a band is an area that I have considerable experience and expertise in. I often get questions from other musicians about the best way to get a band booked. One of the biggest frustrations I hear is what to tell club owners when they ask “how big is your following.” As we all know, that’s unpredictable. You can consistently pull in a great crowd in one place and go to another place and have few people show up. And you certainly don’t want to lie to club owners about what they might expect if they hire you. So how can you handle this?

When I initiate a contact with a new venue that I’m trying to book my band into I always tell them who we are, what we do, and provide a link to my website, Facebook page, ReverbNation page, and You Tube page.

And of course, one of the first things that some club owners often ask when they respond is “how big is your following”? That immediately makes me think, “this person didn’t follow up on the information I sent them about my band.” A brief visit to my website provides everything you need to know about my band. Beyond what kind of music do we play and are we any good at it, which our recorded live videos will tell you, our schedule should provide some hint at what our following may be. If we’re playing every weekend, if we’re playing twice on most weekends, if most venues have us back in, over and over again, doesn’t that tell you what you need to know about my band.

The information on my website also answers the question about whether or not my band is a good fit for any given venue. I make it absolutely clear that we play Chicago Blues. We don’t play blues rock, or classic rock, or rock and roll and then throw in a few blues songs. We bring exactly what we say we’re gonna bring, Chicago Blues. So the question then becomes, does this club provide an atmosphere and support a crowd that will dig a night of Chicago Blues?

When I was living in Lincoln, NE I got booked into a club in town that had just started doing live music and seemed to be looking for their identity. It was a cozy room with a nice stage and a great sound system. Because it was a local venue, a lot of friends that came to our shows at other local venues came out to hear us in the new place. First set went great but as soon as we took a break the guy running the sound system turned into a DJ and cranked up the hip hop/ dance music at a volume that made small talk difficult at best. Most of the people that were there to hear the blues left during that break. And on each subsequent break, the same thing happened. We played that club one more time and it was the same story.

So when a club owner asks “how big is your following? “ I usually direct them to my website and ask them to look at my schedule, watch some of my video, look at the pictures of my band and then consider whether their club can provide the right atmosphere for people who would likely come out to hear what the information on my website portrays my band to be.

Up next: “Website vs Social Media”


Lloyd Jones

Looky Here Everyone,

As summer comes to a close and the holiday season begins, we look forward to “hangin’ with friends and family back home.

This was the best summer ever (got to play at a Castle in Denmark, take the subway to a gigs in Manhatten NY, and play some wild California fests too) but let’s look ahead — way ahead!

Just confirmed Saturday December 17 at Jimmy Mak’s to put on a Special Holiday Show with the “Sweet Angels”. The magnificent Teresa James is coming in from Los Angeles to join me along with LaRhonda Steele, and Lisa Mann!!

With Louis Pain on organ and Brian Foxworth on drums, this will officially be a ..”Supergroup”.

The show will include Angelic Feature songs and Sweet Duets to make a unique one of a kind event. Get your tickets now either show!

Here’s are direct links to purchase tickets for Dec. 17th Jimmy Mak’s show(s):

7:30-9:30 pm show: (doors open at 5pm)

10 pm show: (doors open at 9:30pm


Lloyd Jones

Looky Here Everyone,

As summer comes to a close and the holiday season begins, we look forward to “hangin’ with friends and family back home.  This was the best summer ever (got to play at a Castle in Denmark, take the subway to a gigs in Manhatten NY, and play some wild California fests too) but let’s look ahead. way ahead!

Just confirmed Saturday December 17 at Jimmy Mak’s to put on a Special Holiday Show with the “Sweet Angels”. The magnificent Teresa James is coming in from Los Angeles to join me along with LaRhonda Steele, and Lisa Mann!! With Louis Pain on organ and Brian Foxworth on drums, this will officially be a ..”Supergroup’.

The show will include Angelic Features and Sweet Duets to make this a unique and magical event. Get your tickets now at for the early (7pm) or late (9:30) show!

Lloyd Jones

Harvey Brindell &The Tablerockers

THOSE LOCAL BLUES LEGENDS–Every part of the country has local blues legends, known to everyone in town for decades, whose fame lasts through several generations, but because of a personal choice to stay close to home rather than go out and stay on the road, their name remains unknown to the wider national blues audience. The guys who started playing in bands in junior high and continue throughout their entire lives. Dave Wagner is one of those guys.

When a national act comes through the Zoo Bar in Lincoln NE and for one reason or another needs to find a bass player to fill in for a night or two, or sometimes longer, the locals tell them “call Wags”.  And whether you know him as Wags, or Shakey, or simply as David, if you’ve ever been to the Zoo Bar, you’re likely to have seen him either up on stage subbing on bass with a national act or playing bass and singing in one of the many local bands he’s been part of.

When Magic Slim’s brother, Nick Holt, first got sick, Slim called Dave and asked him to fill in for an extended period of time. When Sherman Robertson came into town and needed a bass player, he called Dave. The list of players that Dave has either helped out locally or gone on the road to play with also includes Jumpin’ Johnny Sansone,   Chris Duarte, Jon Lawton (The Headhunters), Rockin’ Johnny Burgin, Taildragger and others.

I had the chance to play with Dave on and off for twenty five years in several iterations of   The Honeyboy Turner Band (Honeyboy Turner & Cryin’ Heart, The Blues Orchestra featuring Honeyboy Turner, The Honeyboy Turner Band.)  I also had the opportunity to record two studio albums with Dave.

Dave Wagner is the standard by which I judge bass players. The bar is set high and if you’d like to see and hear for yourself, Dave will be in Portland playing with my band, Harvey Brindell & The Tablerockers, at Jo Bar on NW 23rd Street on Friday Oct 28th.

So here’s an opportunity to see, hear and meet one of those “local blues legends” right here in Portland.

Harvey Brindell & The Tablerockers


The Ellen Whyte Plus Sized Band

Hey Everyone!

I want to extend an invite to you all to come out to The Trails End Saloon, 1320 Main St, Oregon City, OR, Saturday night, October 15 for a one-of-a-kind celebration, featuring The Ellen Whyte Plus Sized Band! We’re calling it the “BIG 5!” Showtime 8:30pm.

Why is it called “The Big 5?” Here’s the run down:

  1. It’s the 20th anniversary of our first release, “Different Point Of Blue.”
  2. The 25th wedding anniversary of John Mullin and me.
  3. John’s pending retirement after 42 years of dedicated advocacy work in Human Services work.
  4. 20 years of friendship, songwriting and making great music with Garry Meziere
  5. My birthday

The 10 piece band will be there with our great friend and special guest, Renato Caranto! Put it on the calendar and circle it in red! See you soon!


The Thunder Brothers

Hello “Thunderheads”,

We just returned from the Sunbanks Blues Festival.  We can’t say enough about the great work Billy Stoops does. A big “Thunderthanks” to Billy and the Sunbanks staff for a job well done and a “Thunderful” time.

Then on to The Spar in Tacoma for a “Thunder packed” evening of music and friends, old and new.

The Festival coincided with the release of our EP of original songs, as well as our new line of “Thunderwear”, which includes men’s and woman’s t-shirts, tank tops, and decals.  Hats and more are on the way.

Our EP and all of our “Thunderwear” will soon be available for order on our now up and running “Thundersite” at

This is where to find out our schedule and keep up on The Thunder Brothers projects, as well as on our Facebook page.

On Friday, October 14th, we will be storming the historic Trails End Saloon in Oregon City with a special opening acoustic solo set by Ben Rice.  And if you can’t make it to the show, please be sure to stop by and visit our Facebook page or check out the website  and leave  your email address there if you would like to be on our mailing list.

Thank you for your support.

The Thunder Brothers


David Kahl – Soul Cookin’, Bayou Boyz, and More

There have been some major changes and a bit more than usual in my life since March 20th when so many came together for “A Life For Lynn” at the Rose Room. 71 musicians performed that day and at least another 35 offered their services! We could have put on a festival with such an outpouring. As it stands, I find myself grateful for the efforts of all the volunteers, contributors, and the venue, but, in particular, for Ty Curtis and Tracy Turner-Pain, who spearheaded such an overwhelming labor of love. It made the transition to a less active career a lot easier, at least for now. I do miss playing with Ty and, most certainly, hanging with him, Jerry Jacques, and Louis Pain, but, as they say, life moves on – and, boy, has it moved.

I’ve had a few gigs with Terry Robb, Fiona Boyes, Mitch Kashmar, Too Loose, Karen Lovely, and others that help ease things. Then there are Wednesday nights at Blackwell’s with Soul Cookin’ – Lloyd Jones, Brian Foxworth, Dover Weinberg, and, when they’re out, some incredibly talented special guests. It’s hard to single them out, but I have to, considering the announcement of a new group that has grown out of these Wednesday night socials and celebratory get-togethers.

Steve Kerin is well known and loved, as person and performer, by most of you. This guy’s infectious energy and deep Louisiana roots are more than enough to bring out a crowd that’s ready to party. What a lot of people don’t know is how incredibly diverse his musical taste and talent ranges. This is a plus that we’re going to put to good use.   Shark Schatzkamer has worked and recorded with some of the biggest names in music, among them Bonnie Raitt, Jackson Browne, John Trudell, and Bob Dylan. He is an acknowledged master of stringed instruments and tunings. His reputation is strong and well respected enough to have garnered a commission by Taj Mahal to transcribe his work. As varied as his work is, Mark has a strong love for Louisiana-based music. Pairing him with Steve Kerin was something that just happened and the result was good enough to revisit a couple more times on Wednesdays.

Response was overwhelming, from both the audience – who suggested that it should be a band – and the owner of Blackwell’s, Jan DeLorme, who offered us another regular night of work. With Brian Foxworth and me holding down the rhythm section duties, we are excited about this project. On Sundays, from 5:00-8:00pm, we’ll be bringing some good times, good music, and good vibes to Blackwell’s, 1815 N.E. 41st Avenue, in the heart of the Hollywood District. Although there was a lot of good-natured clamor to call it “The Dave Kahl Band”, we settled on a name that we think is more properly descriptive, The Bayou Boyz is going to set itself deep in swampified, funky, hot and humid Louisiana roots, while exploring new realms and discovering new voices. This is looking to become quite the adventure for all involved. We’d love to have your company.


James Clem

Hi friends, I just got back from playing a lot of dates in Europe. In fact the whole trip lasted five weeks. I started off playing a two-day festival in Ireland and then several gigs in SW England. From there I had a nice welcome playing a sold out SRO show at a studio in London. The next day I did a slide demo for Diamond Bottlenecks at the huge London Acoustic Show in central London.

As I write this I am getting ready to play a show in Antwerp, Belgium and another here in two days. From Belgium we are off to play a cool jazz club in Paris, France (with a gypsy jazz group opening) and then two workshops in Amsterdam, Holland. Except for the Irish festival these are all small venues so no one will get rich playing these places but the experience of meeting people, seeing new places and getting such a great audience response you cannot put a price on. I have had lots of days off for sightseeing as well.

In other news, I got word from Pandora radio that both of my new CD’s Sugar Moon and Road’s Gettin’ Muddy are now on their playlist so submit my name on their site and give a listen. You can also pick those CD’s up at Music Millennium and on iTunes. Hope to see some of you out there at my gigs and keep me in mind for any events you have planned and guitar (and ukulele) lessons.

James Clem


Ashbolt Stewart

Hello fellow Blues Lovers~

October is my birthday month! I’ll be showcasing tunes from my CD Beats Workin’ on Saturday, October 15 with an all-star band at The Montavilla Station, then going coastal to Lincoln City on my actual 67th birthday at Snug Harbor on Saturday, October 22. Then throwing my Portland party at Montavilla Station at the Sunday Bolt Upright JAM on Oct. 23. All shows free from 9pm-1am. I hope to be swinging the drums with both hands and singing some new originals. Hope to see my blues family at these shows!

Also, I want to give a very heartfelt thank you to my Portland community, especially my blues family for all the emotional encouragement that I’ve received since my shoulder injury July 1. My whole world has been turned upside-down this summer and you’ve given me SO much encouragement I know there will be a brighter day ahead very soon. Thanks to each and all of you from my heart.



The Ellen Whyte Plus Sized Band

Hey Everyone!

I want to extend an invite to you all to come out to The Trails End Saloon, 1320 Main St, Oregon City, OR, Saturday night, October 15 for a one-of-a-kind celebration, featuring The Ellen Whyte Plus Sized Band! We’re calling it the “BIG 5!” Showtime 8:30pm.

Why is it called “The Big 5?” Here’s the run down:

 1. It’s the 20th anniversary of our first release, “Different Point Of Blue.”
2. The 25th wedding anniversary of John Mullin and me.
3. John’s pending retirement after 42 years of dedicated advocacy work in Human Services work.
4. 20 years of friendship, songwriting and making great music with Garry Meziere
5. My birthday

 The 10 piece band will be there with our great friend and special guest, Renato Caranto! Put it on the calendar and circle it in red! See you soon!


The Tracey Fordice Band

Hi CBA members and all of you Blues Lovers out there!

We have had a wonderful summer so far, and look forward to a beautiful Fall. The Tracey Fordice Band has been performing a lot of summer concerts recently, and hope to see you out at one of them soon!

Our tour to Montana included shows at Kalispell’s Picnic in the Park concert series, a night at The Great Northern in Whitefish, a fun show at Symes Hot Spring Hotel and Resort in Hot Springs, and to top it off, we had a small house concert in Great Falls.

We are looking forward to a special show at The Birk on September 3, along The North Coast Blues Band to promote the up and coming Ilwaco Blues and Seafood Festival which takes place September 23 and 24. We’ll be headlining on Friday the 23, and the other performers are Nutty Bone, Ilwaco High School Jazz Band, The Bottleneck Blues Band, and The North Coast Blues Band with the Cadillac Horns. The Cadillac Horns will also be joining us for a couple songs, as well as a some other special guests! Saturday night will be spectacular as well with the headliner, Jimmy Thackery. Other great acts that night will be Billy D and the HooDoos  and the Norman Sylvester Band! It’s going to be a fun weekend in Ilwaco, so we hope to see you there!

The Muddy awards are coming up and we hope to be nominated again this year for the Contemporary Blues Act and for our CD “Out Of The Blues”. Look for us promoting the CD at all of the upcoming events which includes the Ilwaco Blues Festival on September 23, BlueStreak Live with Dr. Jane Manning and Dave Johnson at Music Millennium on September 26, and the CBA Membership Meeting on October 5 at the Melody Ballroom!

Blues to you!

Tracey Fordice and the Tracey Fordice Band

Patrick Haley

Hi Blues Fans,

We all enjoy seeing our favorite blues acts in the Portland Metro area. So much talent, so many venues. Truly a hotbed of the blues. But y’all need to know that there’s a great blues and roots music scene out in the Columbia River Gorge, too.

A lot of local musicians out there are keeping the flame burning, and performing at small local venues playing original blues and inspired interpretations of our favorites.  Hood River, White Salmon, Bingen and The Dalles have embraced the truth and basic simplicity of roots and blues music.

I just completed a performance at Cathedral Ridge Winery in Hood River with a side project band called Bluesbridge.  Next I’ll be performing at Growlerz Pub in Bingen and at the White Salmon Farmers’ Market.  Come on out to the Gorge and sample our style of blues music. Look for other great artists out there like Eddie Corduroy, Ben Bonham, Mark Daly, Polly Norris, Kerry Williams, and Willy and Nelson.  And listen to Squrl’s Blues Review on Friday nights on 92.7 KMSW.   Hope to see you soon.

Patrick Haley


Randy Oxford’s All-Star Slam

Since I started my own Band back in 2003 I have always enjoyed featuring a variety of singers and instrumentalists at each and every show. Having no less than a 6 piece Band with at least 3 vocalists at all times has been a successful formula for the Randy Oxford Band.

Knowing so many fantastic Musicians here in the pacific NW and all around north America has inspired me to present a series of All-Star shows in 2016. I started testing this concept last December at shows in Alberta, Canada and Montana, then more recently at the Walla Walla Guitar Festival in April. Festival director Robin Barrett suggested I call this show “Randy Oxford’s All-Star Slam” and the name stuck for the 2016 Festival season.

In July we are bringing in Legendary Soul/Blues singer (from Minneapolis) Wee Willie Walker for shows at the Highway 99 Club on July 15, Jazzbones on July 16 and the Winthrop Rhythm & Blues festival on July 17. Wee Willie was nominated this year for 3 Blues music awards through the Blues foundation out of Memphis, TN. His latest release “If nothing ever changes” is highly acclaimed and we’ll be featuring songs from this CD and much more.

The All-Star Slam Band for these shows will be bursting with talent with the likes of CD Woodbury, Willy Straub, Eddie Mendoza, Patrick McDanel, and a 3 piece horn section reunited from my days with Little Bill & the Blue Notes with Brian Kent and Hadi Al-Saadoon. Joining this ensemble for the Winthrop show will be Peter Dammann, Jim Pugh and Angelo Ortiz making it a 10 piece All-Star Slam Band! OH THE HUMANITY!

More All-Star Slam shows can be seen at The Rockcut Blues festival, Jazz in the Valley, the Seattle waterfront concert series, the Rendezvous festival, the Everett Waterfront concert series, the Flathead Valley Blues festival, the Poverty Bay Blues festival, Pig out in the Park and many more dates TBA. In addition to the above lineup we will add even more Musicians for these shows that include Aury Moore, Lissa Ramaglia, Geoffrey Castle, Robin Barrett, Tiphony Dames and several surprise guests too.

As a Band leader I am in heaven having this opportunity to feature so much talent. I have future plans to feature a variety of more Musicians from around the country and from my past Randy Oxford Band lineups as well. More information on all of these shows at and


Bottleneck Blues Band

The summer has be moving fast for the Bottleneck Blues Band!  Ben Rougeou, the bass player, developed an illness and had to leave the group, he is going to be fine.  Seth Zowader, keyboards, obtained a new job that would not allow him enough time to fulfill our dates so the band decided it was time for a big change.

Randy Monroe from the Linda Hornbuckle Band was recruited for the bass.  Franklin Spicer from Return Flight was added to play keys and Pete Moss, on sax who has been jamming with the band since Spring, was made a full time member.

The new lineup of veteran performers is ready for a summer full of shows in the Northwest.  The band has a long list of festivals they will be appearing at The Taste of Tacoma, The Waterfront Blues Festival, The Wallace, ID Blues Fest, Cathedral Park Jazz Fest, Illwaco Seafood and Blues Fest, The Crawdad Festival on Mt. Hood, and The White Salmon Concert Series. The Bottleneck boys have also added several new clubs to their rotation in the area.

They are hoping to get into the studio soon to begin working on their 2nd album.  The songs are written, now it’s time to arrange them and get them ready to record.  Bottleneck is also working on a new website to be released this summer so keep a look out for that!

You can always find us at  Come out and dance and hear us again for the first time.  Thank you CBA!


Ashbolt Stewart

Hello Portland Bluesters! I just returned from a successful mini-tour of the Bay Area where I headlined the Club Fox Blues Jam. I had the same fellows from Greaseland Studios that played on my latest CD, Beats Workin’, which included Kid Andersenm, Steve Ehrmann, Terry Hiatt and Aki Kumar, with additional drummer Dennis Dove. I was upfront as the lead vocalist, doing the same show we did at last year’s Waterfront Blues Fest. Local diva Rae Gordon was in the crowd and came up and lit the place on fire during the jam part of the evening. I also headlined at Lil Lou’s BBQ. It’s great to be back in my home town Portland, Oregon. You can catch me doing massage at the massage booth at this year’s WFBF, noon-3:30pm on July 1, and 11am-3pm on July 4. Also, Kid, Aki and Steve will be playing at this year’s WFBF. Check ’em out and please continue to support live Portland blues. You can purchase my CD’s at CD Baby and Music Millennium and at my local gigs. Keep the Peace!

Ashbolt Stewart


Michael Hawkeye Herman

I’m happy to report that the Samuel French Publishing Co. has licensed for publishing and production the play “El Paso Blue,” by Octavio Solis/with music by Michael “Hawkeye” Herman. The play, with music, is now offered in the Samuel French Publishing catalog for both sales of scripts for classroom use, as well as for productions.

The first offering of the play via the Samuel French Publishing agreement is currently running at the Gala Hispanic Theatre in Wash. D.C.  The play premiered in San Francisco at The Intersection Theater in 1994, and has seen successful runs in major theaters around the United States over the past 22 years, including in Chicago, Seattle, Portland, San Diego, Pittsburgh, Philadelphia, New York City/off-Broadway, Washington, DC, the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, and the University of Northern Arizona.

Solis’ riff on the Oedipus Rex classic is a wild and comic tale of lust, revenge, identity and the Blues.  Al leaves his wife Sylvie in the care of his father before serving a prison sentence. Upon release, he discovers that his beloved and the old man have fallen in-love and run away.  The epic chase that ensues across El Paso pits together the funniest cast of characters ever assembled on a sprawling manhunt.

For more information about “El Paso Blue” check out the following links:

Cheers and Best,


Ben Rice

Hey Everyone! It is finally Blues Fest time again! It is definitely my favorite part of the summer A GIANT BLUES FESTIVAL with great music all day in our backyard! This year has been a bombardment of fun and exciting musical adventures! Traveling all over the world to play music and meet new people. Rather than talk about all that, I want to talk briefly about a couple sets I am excited for! On Sunday I’ll be on stage with vocal powerhouse Karen Lovely and the crazy band she’ll have with her which consists of Lisa Mann (2x Blues Music Award for Bassist of the Year), Mark Bowden, and Dave Melyan. We’ve all played together in other festivals around the US but we have never had the opportunity to perform together in Portland, it will be awesome!

I am really excited that on July 4 I’ll be performing with my band for the Cascade Blues Association Journey To Memphis at 1:30pm. This band will consist of my normal trio that I play with around town and out on the road, Calen Uhlig on bass and Dave Melyan on drums. In addition to my usual lineup I asked my friends Mac Potts to join us on keys and Jim Vermilya to join us on Saxophone. We have a lot of fun and are sounding killer, these guys seriously bring it! The Journey to Memphis is a contest put on by the Cascade Blues Association to select who will represent them in the International Blues Challenge a blues festival held in Beale Street in February. This year four bands will be bringing their all to the competition and every year it is a great chance to see what new acts are coming up in the Portland Blues scene.  Shout out to my friends in the other bands Rae Gordon, The Thunder Brothers, and Beacon Street Titans, Good luck ya’ll!

I also HIGHLY recommend stopping by the Hotel Rose either before the fest for their brunch sessions with United By Music, they’ve got Happy Hour Music going too 4-6pm with sets by the very funky Lloyd Jones, in town from Austin Ty Curtis, and Leo “Bud” Welch. Hotel Rose is my favorite after hours spot too with some epic late night jams going!

Anyways, Bandstand, I guess I should talk about more than just the festival. Portland has music every night of the week and I am lucky to host Tuesday nights out in Gresham at a place called Spud Monkeys (1716 NW Fairview Dr.)… It’s a potato place! There on Tuesdays you can catch me with a house band tearing it up from 8pm to Midnight. The first set is a house band with a rotating special guest then we open it up to jamming. Towards the end of July we’ll have my blues buddy from SoCal Mike Hammer as a guest! On Wednesdays out in Newberg OR there’s a weekly jam session I host at a funky bar called Voodoo Martini which is pretty fun and relaxed! The first and fourth Thursdays of every month you can catch me with some friends in the Roy Rice Band. Melanie Roy and I decided to get together to play some funky up-tempo dance music at Clyde’s a couple times a month. It has been really fun and a great way to play songs I normally wouldn’t get to play!

Thanks for supporting live music and checking out Blues Notes! This is a great way to keep track of who’s playing where and where because we are blessed to live in a city where music is everywhere all the time! For more info on myself and my musical endeavors visit, if you send me an email I’ll send you a song or two! Thanks!