Thank You To Holiday Party Volunteers

Thank You VolunteersOften the Cascade Blues Association holds events where we need extra hand on deck, and we greatly appreciated when our volunteers step forward to help us out. Thanks to the following individuals for their assistance for our Journey To Memphis competition in mid-May:

Working as judges for the event:Alan Spinrad, Chuk Barber and Jenny Jacobs.

Helping with the door, merchandise table and stage break-down: Bert Pagett, Cherie Robbins, Jon Pierce, and Richard LaChapelle

Anni Piper

Anni Piper“Anni Piper, fresh to the US from Australia, is a vixen, a vamp, a tease, and every woman scorned….Thing is, what strikes me most about Anni Piper is her incredibly fun sense of humor, a trait that shows itself from beginning to end of her latest release: More Guitars Than Friends.” Wolfmann’s Music

I first heard that sexy, sultry voice of Anni Piper on stage in the small town of Joseph, Oregon, and it can now be heard at local venues. Fans are blessed to have this Aussie blues sensation call Portland home.

Anni was born and raised in Sydney Australia, although she spent some time living in the USA as a child. “My father was a professor and taught at the University of Illinois and UC Davis during my elementary school years. I have been living in the USA continuously for about four years, and Portland has been home now since last fall,” she said.

Starting with the flute when she was eight and bass when she was fourteen, Anni always wanted to be a musician. “I had music lessons as a child and completed a Bachelor of Contemporary Music at 19 years of age.”

Stevie Ray Vaughan was a huge influence in terms of blues and she said she dearly loves that Texas style. “You have to keep in mind that, growing up in Australia in the ’90s, there was no internet so I still had to go to a local record store to buy CDs. Often their blues selection was limited. I enjoy Freddie King and Bobby Blue Bland, if I’m in a more retro mood. I also did a lot of study of Jaco Pastorius and Stanley Clarke in my early bass learning years.”

Her musical style may be attributed to her unique history. At 17 years of age she started performing professionally. “I moved to an area near the famous Byron Bay surf beaches that is known for its’ alternative lifestyle. I lived in a hippie commune with solar power, rain water, and kangaroos hopping around my front lawn….I’m serious. There were many students in the area, so there was a lot going on musically for such a small town,” she said.

Anni describes her music style as fluid and malleable. “I get different moods as a human being and as an artist. My life is shaped so much by my environment and varied stimuli can produce interesting compositional outcomes. Texas Blues is often how I am pigeonholed, but if you listen to my 2010 album, Chasin’ Tail, it is, without a shadow of a doubt, blues rock. Having said that, I adore jazz too and would like to explore more of that vocally in the future.”

Anni’s talent has won her numerous awards, including:

  • 2004 – ABC radio national Fresh Air contest winner
  • 2005 – Winner – Best New Talent at the Australian Blues Music Awards
  • 2005 – Finalist – best female vocal at the Australian Blues Music Awards
  • 2005 – Musicoz awards top 5 finalist
  • 2005 – Australian National songwriting contest 2nd place
  • 2009 – APRA professional development awards finalist; finalist best female vocal at Australian Blues Music Awards; Rudy Brandsma nominee at Australian National Song Contest
  • 2015 -Top 5 finalist UK songwriting contest

She currently has five recordings out: Jailbait – 2004,  Black Market Music; Texas Hold ‘Em – 2007, Black Market Music; Chasin’ Tail  – 2010, Black Market Music; Split Second – 2013, Blues Leaf Records (this was the label Janiva Magness first signed with); and More Guitars Than Friends – 2016,  Sugar Daddy Records. Anni says she hopes to record more in the future.

In the Portlasnd blues scene she has played with Karen Lovely, Ben Rice, Kris Deelane, and Dan Hess. “I’m currently looking for a guitarist based in Portland to do some shows with me.”

I think Jeremy Loome of The Edmondton Sun, Canada sums it up best, “Piper has the kind of voice that lulls men to their doom. It’s soft and sweet when it wants to be, scared and vulnerable a moment later, then ripping through you like a razor… Piper commands songs utterly.”

She’ll be touring around the USA part of this summer, but be sure and catch her when she makes it back to Portland. For more information about Anni and to find out where you can find her performing, check out her website at

10th Annual Blues Build Benefit

The thirty-ninth annual Blues Music Awards honoring blues musicians and recordings in 26 categories were held in Memphis, TN, last month. Portland’s own Curtis Salgado was once again awarded the BMA for Soul Vocalist, his ninth BMA award and seventeenth nomination overall. Other local musicians nominated this year were Karen Lovely, Jimi Bott, and The Paul deLay Band. Congratualtions to Curtis and to all the award recipients and nominees.

The night’s biggest winners were Taj Mahal & Keb’ Mo’ for individual awards and for their outstanding collaborative album TajMo, for a total of five awards. Among those Taj Mahal was presented with the prize award of the night, the BB King Entertainer of the Year. Rick Estrin also BMAs took home three himself, including with his band The Nightcats.

Benefit Performance & Fundraising Site For Curtis SalgadoAcoustic Album – Break The Chain, Doug MacLeod
Acoustic Artist – Taj Mahal
Album of the Year – TajMo, Taj Mahal & Keb’ Mo’
B.B. King Entertainer of the Year – Taj Mahal
Band of the Year – Rick Estrin & The Nightcats
Best Emerging Artist Album – Southern Avenue, Southern Avenue
Contemporary Blues Album – TajMo, Taj Mahal & Keb’ Mo’
Contemporary Blues Female Artist – Samantha Fish
Contemporary Blues Male Artist – Keb’ Mo’
Historical Album – Luther Allison – A Legend Never Dies, Essential Recordings 1976-1997 (Ruf Records)
Instrumentalist – Vocals – Beth Hart
Instrumentalist – Bass – Michael “Mudcat” Ward
Koko Taylor Award (Traditional Blues Female Artist) – Ruthie Foster
Instrumentalist – Drums – Tony Braunagel
Instrumentalist – Guitar – Ronnie Earl
Instrumentalist – Harmonica – Jason Ricci
Instrumentalist – Horn – Trombone Shorty
Pinetop Perkins Piano Player (Instrumentalist – Piano) – Victor Wainwright
Rock Blues Album – We’re All In This Together, Walter Trout
Traditional Blues Male Artist – Rick Estrin
Rock Blues Artist – Mike Zito
Song of the Year – “The Blues Ain’t Going Nowhere”, written by Rick Estrin
Soul Blues Album – Robert Cray & Hi Rhythm, Robert Cray & Hi Rhythm
Soul Blues Female Artist – Mavis Staples
Soul Blues Male Artist – Curtis Salgado
Traditional Blues Album – Right Place, Right Time, Monster Mike Welch and Mike Ledbetter

Cascade Blues Association, Many Opportunities for CBA Volunteers

Thanks to some of our wonderful volunteers these are the places where to find the printed Blues Notes.

Catfish Lou’s
delivered at the Monthly meeting
Ann Harcrow 
Music Millennium
Barley Mill Pub
Horse Brass
Spud Monkey
Carol Hamley
White Eagle
15th ave Hop House
Café Destino
Alberta Rose Theater
Cannon’s Rib Express
Spare Room
Clyde’s  Prime Rib
Blue Diamond
Gastro Pub
Muddy Rudder
Vinyl Tap
Kathy Rose 
Bagdad Theatre & Pub
Artichoke Music
Crossroads Music
12th Fret
Jackpot Records
Bishops Barbershop
Manley & Sons Barbershop
Dapper Barbershop
Jeanette Aglipay (new)
Trail’s End Saloon
Area 52
Montavilla Station
Dan Dalton
Trade Up Music
Everyday Music Sandy Blvd
Everyday Music Burnside
Goose Hollow Tavern
Guitar Center Tigard
Wendy Schumer
Mock Crest
Anne Purner 
Compass Coffee – Main St., Vanc.
Brickhouse Bar & Grill – Main St., Vanc
Niche Wine Bar- Main St., Vanc
Burnt Bridge Cellars-1500 Broadway, Vanc
Cellar 55 – 1812 Washington St., Vanc.
Old Ivory Brewery and Taproom- 108 W. Evergreen Blvd., Vanc.
Shanahan’s Bar & Grill – Columbia St., Vanc.
Brewed – Main St., Vanc  (coffee, wine & beer place)
Top Shelf – Main St.,Vanc.
Susan McCarthy,  acupuncturist  –   Main St., Vanc
Vinnie’s Pizza –  Main St., Vanc
Loowit Brewing, 507 Columbia St., Vanc.
Torque Coffee – Columbia St.,  Vanc.
Dirty Hands Brewing Co. – 114 Evergreen Blvd., Vanc
Dublin Down – Main St., Vanc
Everybody’s Music – Main St.,  Vanc.
Mt. Tabor Brewing – 113 W. 9th St.,  Vanc
Mint Tea -Main St.,  Vanc
J. Michael Salon – 1700 Broadway,  Vanc.
Liquid Gold – 11202 NE 4th Plain Rd.,  Vanc
Garage Bar & Grille – W. 4th Plain,  Vanc.
Billy Blues Bar & Grill –   Hazel Dell Ave.,  Vanc.
Jazzy Johns –  JM Plaza,  Hazel Dell
Country Store Bakery – 119th St.,  Vanc.
Latte Da –   39th St.,  Vanc
Confluence Winery –  19111 NW 65th Ave.,  Ridgefield
Rusty Grape Vineyard – 16712 NE 219th St.,  Battleground
Bethany Vineyard – 4115 NE 259th St.,  Ridgefield
3 Brothers Winery  – 2411 NE 244th St.,  Ridgefield
Gougher Cellars – 26505  10th Ave.,  Ridgefield
Old Town Battle Grounds Coffee & Deli,   Battleground
Music World – Battleground
Sportsman’s Restaurant – 121 N. Main St.,  Ridgefield
Blind Onion Pizza – Highway 99,  HazelDell
Blind Onion Pizza – 6115 NE114th Ave.,  Orchards
Low Bar
Sugar & Salt
Koi Pond Cellars
Rockys Pizza
The Sportin’ Lifers

The Sportin’ LifersThe Sportin’ Lifers describe their music as a mixture of “jump blues,” “rhythm and blues,” “boogie woogie,” and “swing,” and the longer they perform as a unit the more their music fuses eras and bends genres. “As much as possible, we play what inspires us.”

Who are the band members and what part do they play in the band?

Erin Wallace – vocals
Whit Draper – guitar and vocals
Don Campbell – bass and vocals
Steve Cleveland – keys and vocals
Fred Ingram – drums and vocals

Were you all born and raised in the Portland area?

Erin: I grew up in Vancouver, BC. I moved to Portland originally to go to college. After I graduated, I moved to Boston to attend the Berklee College of Music for a few years, but Portland called me back.

Don: I was raised in southern Oregon, of redneck descent, and migrated north to Eugene where I fell in with Bill Rhoades, Curtis Salgado, D.K. Stewart and the blues community. In 1981, I got a gig with the Paul deLay Band and moved to Portland.

Fred: I was born in Portland and grew up in Eugene and Roseburg.

Steve: I was born and raised in Oregon, and I’ve lived in Portland most of my adult life.

Whit: I spent a big portion of my youth in Greece, where my parents were working.

How long have you been performing together professionally and individually?

Erin: Whit started the band about 8 years ago, then I joined about a year after that. He and I had previously met in another band and really enjoyed working together so we stayed in touch. He could not have picked a more talented, enjoyable group of people for this band. We have an absolute blast together.

Fred: I met Whit Draper thru the auspices of Steve Morelli. He got us a gig playing blues at a friend’s birthday party one scorching August day; it was so hot outside the balloons were popping. Whit introduced me to Johnny Ward and Steve Cleveland, then Brad Ulrich and Erin Wallace. When Morelli had to leave the band Whit brought in Don Campbell. It’s been clicking ever since and I’m having an absolute ball playing with these guys.

Steve: I met Whit and Fred over a decade ago, through Johnnie Ward. I’ve played with Erin and Don for quite a few years. It’s a privilege to play with all of them.

Don: I have known Whit Draper by association for many years, and played once in a while with Brad Ulrich. Brad called me four or five years ago to fill in for some Tuesday nights at the Blue Diamond with the Sportin’ Lifers. I was way out over my skis with those guys because they played frisky, arranged music that swung so hard and was way more than three-chord blues. It turned into a very groovy thing.

Did each of you always want to perform professionally or if not, what did you “want to be when you grew up”?

Don: I grew up around music. I saw Tennessee Ernie Ford do “16 Tons” on TV and that was it. I started playing in school bands in grade school, but fell prey to rock and roll in the ‘60s, and found my way to blues and jazz (even though I am by no means a jazz guy). I have never not played music.

I played professionally all through the ‘80s–meaning it was basically my sole means of income, though that income was, um, for the poverty-level kind. I have held various jobs over the years, most of them in the editorial field, another extremely lucrative profession.

Steve: I knew early on in life that I wanted to play music professionally on some level. I didn’t really know how to go about it though. So it took a while.

Who has influenced your music?

Erin: I have always been heavily influenced by female artists. Growing up my parents used to play a lot of Ella Fitzgerald, Sarah Vaughn, Edith Piaf, Joni Mitchell, Joan Baez. When I got a little older I discovered Aretha Franklin, Carol King, Bonnie Raitt, Dolly Parton, Nina Simone, Tina Turner, Etta James, Cassandra Wilson. And as a singer and a child of the ‘80s, I can’t go without mentioning Whitney Houston. I’m sure my bandmates will appreciate that. In my adult life, I listen to everything from Ruth Brown and Little Esther to Janelle Monáe, Lake Street Dive and Missy Elliott. And Sharon Jones all day long. I’m all over the map. Currently I have Meshell Ndegeocello’s latest album on repeat.

Don: My influences are numerous: anybody who ever played bass with B.B. King, Leroy Vinegar, Ray Brown, Christian McBride, Ron Carter, Jaco (mostly for inspiration for what a bass could do), Scott LaFaro, Paul Chambers, Carol Kaye, James Jamerson, Jerry Jemmott, Mingus (again, mostly for butt-kicking inspiration), Rocco Prestia, George Porter, Jr., a whole ton of African bass players whose names I don’t know, and hundreds of others, and those are just the bass guys. I met Victor Bailey in the Cape Town airport one time, and that was oddly and cooly inspirational. I love anything with soul.

Fred: I come from a musical family. My Grampa Joe would entertain us kids with vaudeville songs, accompanying himself on a tenor banjo. Dad was a professional musician and played trumpet and vibes in his own trio. He brought us up on Dixieland and swing music… Louie Armstrong, Benny Goodman, Ray Charles, Oscar Peterson, Milt Jackson, Shelly Manne, Clark Terry, Stan Getz, Jimmy Smith, Wes Montgomery. He brought home an old Slingerland drum set when I was in 5th grade and had his drummer, Stan Rhees, give me drum lessons. A few years later, my older siblings introduced me to Miles’ Filles de Kilamanjaro, Gary Burton’s Duster with Roy Haynes, John Coltrane‘s Africa Brass with Elvin Jones, then Horace Silver’s 27th Man with Mickey Roker and the world of CTI thru Freddie Hubbard’s album First Light. Even though I was immersed in rock n’ roll music with my friends, the exposure to jazz stretched my idea of possibilities. The summer before my senior year in high school I got a gig playing drums in an organ trio–my first professional job. I’ve been playing ever since, everything from country to funk, zydeco to jump, cumbia, samba, second line, hillbilly, bebop, polka… find that groove.

Steve: I’m influenced by any soulful music of any genre. I like roots music. Music with deep roots. When I play in this band, I draw specifically on Ray Charles, Otis Spann, Duke Ellington, Count Basie, Jimmy Rowles, Nat Cole, Bud Powell, Horace Silver, Thelonious Monk, Teddy Wilson, Jimmy Smith.

How would you describe your music?

Steve: I think this music we play is swingin’, danceable, and drenched in the blues.

Erin: My personal musical endeavors are pretty broad. Right around the time I joined The Sportin’ Lifers, I also started with a band called The Sentiments–a big, fun, energetic 9-piece soulful ska and rocksteady band. It is a complete blast to play with those folks as well and a whole different world than my other projects. The connections I made in that band led to me having the opportunity to do a couple of tours singing with the amazing Ernest Ranglin – Jamaican jazz guitar legend. More recently, I started a solo project called Wallace. That band plays almost all my own original material and influences range from soul to funk to rock to pop with a little bit of hip hop mixed in. It is a much more personal endeavor for me. I definitely take what I have learned from the Sportin’ Lifers with me into that project.

Don: My music? Anything roots based played with soul and inspiration. I love authentic country, blues, jazz, reggae, rock, soul, world beat, and anything that draws or melds or pushes the envelopes of those. I hate music with no lineage, no historical sensibility, and no soul.

Did you have any formal training or self-taught?

Erin: I started singing lessons at age 11. After years studying classical, jazz and musical theatre, I attended the Berklee College of music and started focusing on soul, blues, jazz and rhythm and blues. Honestly, I loved being at music school and wouldn’t trade it for the world. But I have learned so much more from my real-world experiences – particularly with a group as challenging, fun and supportive as The Sportin’ Lifers. They are such bad-ass musicians, they push and inspire me to learn more and do better every time.

Don: I had minor formal training, but mostly curiosity about how to make cool sounds and find grooves on an instrument. Playing with the Sportin’ Lifers is constantly inspirational and educational. These nutballs bring a lot to the party.

Steve: I had some good piano teachers as a kid, and I’ve had some wonderful mentors, such as the late Kent Glenn, a brilliant post-bop pianist, composer, and arranger. And I continually learn from everyone I play with. Music is a lifelong endeavor and we are all self-taught at some fundamental level, even as we continue to learn from others.

What CD’s do you have out?

We have one album out: Cigars, Billiards, Lunches. It was released about 4 years ago. Available on CD Baby, Amazon, iTunes, etc.

Any more CD’s in the works.

Don has an amazing studio space out in the Gorge. We keep threatening to lock ourselves up there for a while and write and record until we have another finished album. Hopefully soon!!

Who have you played with?

We usually play shows on our own but we have, on occasion had the pleasure to share the stage with amazing local bands/musicians like The Jumptown Aces, The Pepper Grinders, Jim Wallace, Suburban Slim and others.

Are there any former band members you want to mention?

Bass player, Steve Morelli was one of our founding members. He put a lot of love into this project. You can see the restaurant name is “Morelli’s” in the photo on our album cover. That was our loving shout out to him.

Brad Ulrich was also a big part of the band from the beginning. You can hear him on the album on sax and clarinet. We have been really lucky to have such talent come through our ranks.

Closing comments:

We can be found playing Happy Hour at the Secret Society on the third Friday of every month. The Sportin’ Lifers Trio (that’s Whit, Don and Steve) plays the fourth Friday of every month at The Muddy Rudder. You can find some version of the band at Catfish Lou’s and The Blue Diamond on a fairly regular basis.

Chad Rupp

Chad Rupp“Raw and authentic Portland style blues,” is the way Portland native, Chad Rupp describes his music. He has been in and out of the Portland Blues scene for almost 25 years. Semi-professionally for about the last ten years. But he says he has been a bluesman from the very start. “From the first time I heard Muddy do ‘Mannish Boy’, I was hooked.”

“When I was a young teenager, my brother, Greg, hipped me to SRV and I burned through tapes like crazy from that. I was introduced to Portland’s greats in the late 80’s and fell in love with what was, in my humble opinion, THE blues scene in the country at that time. I feel so very thankful for those wonderful musicians who carved out that niche and who still work the scene today.”

Chad plays a variety of instruments. “Over the years I have picked up some skill on guitar, piano, harmonica, bass and ukulele, though I’m always ready to pick up another instrument. I think sax might be the next.”

His training has been semi-formal and he says it is continuously evolving. “I have learned some things myself and I have taken lessons for certain aspects of instruments and performance.” He credits Robbie Laws and Jim Mesi with help on the guitar, and DK Stewart on piano. And he is self-taught on harmonica and ukulele.

Currently he teaches a few different instruments and for the moment, that’s keeping his head above water, along with a weekly gig at The Lair on Thursday nights in Milwaukie. “The 1-4-5 Blues Jam Party is bringing a lot of talent together and giving some local musicians a chance to craft. The band and I are providing a proving ground for up and comers. It’s very rewarding and a lot of fun!”


“I have a lot of influences, as I play several instruments. All the classic blues greats have played a part in what I play, however, my most revered influences are my Portland professors. The classroom has always been their live performances in local venues. Jim Mesi, Paul deLay, Lloyd Jones, Norman Sylvester, DK Stewart, Curtis Salgado, Duffy Bishop and their supporting bands were the faculty and remain so. There are many others who have given me a supplemental education over the years. I have the deepest respect for our local musicians and hope to carry on the tradition.”


Chad says he has made recordings, but hasn’t released any albums as of yet. For the moment, catch him live. “I have a fun little EP I’m putting together called Murderville: The Service Industry Blues. Should be out mid-summer 2018.”

When it comes to performing line-up, Chad says his shows and jam sessions have featured many of Portland’s most loved musicians from past to present and continue to do so. “I feel so fortunate to have been on stage with those who I consider to be the best Portland’s scene has to offer, however, there are still a few left to keep me motivated. If you are reading this article, you’re likely hip to Portland’s blues scene. I am honored to have played with almost everybody based here, including Curtis Salgado, Lloyd Jones, Norman Sylvester, Jim Mesi, DK Stewart, Duffy Bishop, Robbie Laws, Big Monti, Ben Rice, Lisa Mann, Rae Gordon, Karen Lovely, and their supporting band members. There is an endless cast of jammers sitting in, being featured, or others featured as part of my own band or session.”

He says he feels fortunate to have access to an amazing pool of talent. Whatever position needs filled in a band, he can count on quality, so depending on the size of the show, he adds the musicians needed. “When I create an event, I grab the best musicians I can. I’ve had some magical combos in the rhythm section with members like Brian Foxworth, Reinhardt Melz, John Mazzocco, David Kahl, Mike Klobas, Ashbolt Stewart, Calen Uhlig, Marty Henninger, Gene Ermel, Chandler Bowerman and others. Musicians like Doug Rowell and Josh Makosky have sided up with me numerous times. David Gofreed has been a go to call for me as well.”

The current band mates for the 1-4-5 Blues Jam Party every Thursday at The Lair are bassist David Kahl and alternating on drums, Gene Ermel and Chandler Bowerman. Chad mans the guitar, keys, harmonica, and vocals.

Closing Comments

“When it comes down to it, I am about service to our scene. I want to find us new venues to play in, I want to re-introduce live music to our neighborhoods and remind them what groove is. I want our legendary players to be heard and I want Portland to know what a great gift it has in talent and entertainment. These are my simple goals.”

“In closing, I’d like to say to you, the reader, take a few hours a week to go out and appreciate some live music. Dance, sing, play with us and if you can, don’t forget to tip the band. We need gas money! See you out there!”

The Arrogant Bastards

The “Arrogant Bastards” is a Blues, Funk, and Rock-n-Roll band based in Portland Oregon.

The Arrogant BastardsFounded in early 2017 from a desire to create and perform music that is raw, exciting, and entertaining, the Bastards’ music is primarily blues based intertwined with elements of Funk and Rock-n-Roll. But they’re not your typical local Blues band — they like their music heavy and dynamic! They write their original songs with plenty of catchy hooks and a splash of innuendo. They also perform renditions of various songs from artists such as Tab Benoit, Johnny Winter, Stevie Ray Vaughn, Albert Collins, Albert King, Hound Dog Taylor, Govt. Mule, and Jimi Hendrix. The self-proclaimed “Bad Boys of Portland Blues” are an aggressive group of musicians with backgrounds as diverse as the songs they play.

It started with Paul moving to Portland a few years ago and wanting to start performing live again. James had been playing a couple of years with a group after a long hiatus and had come across Paul’s contact info. The first collaboration was a bit too removed from the blues than Paul wanted. A year later though, Paul contacted a bass player whom James had giving his info to, and she gave Paul James’s contact info.  They soon started rehearsals. Two lead guitar players and three bass players later, they connected with John and Mike and everything clicked. They played at a local showcase two weeks later. The audience response was outstanding! They recently added Brad’s keyboard talents to the mix. It’s been full steam ahead ever since.

Paul (Rhythm Guitar and Lead Vocals) is originally from the San Francisco Bay area. He has lived in all four corners of the U.S. While living in North Carolina and working at radio station WCOM, Paul interviewed the great blues player Tab Benoit. Tab told him “It is a blessing to be an artist, performances are for the people. It’s their show, they paid for it, and I want to give them a way to connect.” Paul shares and understand that vision and gives everything he has in his performances. He brings that gritty, swampy, soulful sound of the Gulf Coast to the band.

Mike (Lead Guitar) is a lifelong guitar aficionado. He developed his talents in the hardened music scene of New York’s Long Island. After moving to Portland, he made his mark and name known locally. He’s recorded several albums and performed with various groups. A tenacious player and savvy genius who plays every song like it was his last. He doesn’t hold back, but rips it in a precise and fitting manner. He perfectly combines the hard driving blues of Texas with New York styled Rock-n-Roll.

John (Bass Guitar) developed his silky style in Detroit. His passion was the underground sounds of Hendrix, Zappa, Deep Purple, Pink Floyd, and Zeppelin on FM radio WABX. This path led him to San Francisco. He cut his teeth on countless jams, no-name bands, open-mics, and music festivals. After moving to Portland, he returned to his roots of Blues, Funk, and Soul. He holds down the bottom end with a flash of Motown Rhythm and Blues and a splash of West Coast free spirit.

Brad (Keyboards) long ago discovered the simple fact that he was happiest when he is creative. His creativity has expressed itself in many styles and media, but music has always been at its core. Founded in Blues and Rock, his musical expressions have traveled deep in Jazz exploration and finally to a return to Blues. He believes that true inspiration is rare; it requires consistent creative and experimental practice to make its appearance. The talent-filled Arrogant Bastards is a perfect vehicle for his creativity and an easy target for inspiration to find.

James (Drums) was born on a bluff overlooking the Mississippi River (not kidding!) and grew up where that famous river first crosses Hwy. 61. He had a front row seat to the Minneapolis sound explosion during the 80’s. He was involved in several Blues, Rock, and Funk projects that never fully materialized. He stepped away from music performance for almost two decades. Eventually he moved to Portland. He started playing with a few local projects, which led to him and Paul forming Arrogant Bastards. He brings that no-frills solid driving beat forward with funkiness and soul.

The Arrogant Bastards are huge supporters of the great work done by the Cascade Blues Association. Most gigs are set up so All CBA Members are on the Guest List. They are always adding new performances to the schedule. Please check out the event calendar on the CBA website or visit the Arrogant Bastard Facebook page to see where you can catch them gettin’ down and dirty with the Blues. You’ll have a blast!

Thank You To Holiday Party Volunteers

Thank YouWhenever the Cascade Blues Association holds a special event it takes a few extra hands to make things run smoothly. The Board of Directors truly appreciates those who volunteer to help us as we could not do it without you. We would like to note those individuals who gave their time to help us at December’s Holiday Party. Thank you all so much!!

Bonita Davis
Bryan Olson
Carol Hamley
Coila Ash
Jon Pierce
Lucia Michaud
Priscilla Ditter
Rebecca Erickson
Richard LaChapelle
Ron Beed
Ron Johnson
Sandie Wilkins
Tom Rich

Gary Burford

Gary BurfordGary Burford was born in Austin, Texas. The right town to fall in love with music. He lived there before moving to Albany, Oregon, in the early 1970’s, where he lived until joining the U.S. Army in 1978.

Having three older brothers who played and listened to a lot of music was the key to Gary following in their footsteps. “In grade school there were bands that practiced in the back room of our house. My oldest brother, who was 15 years older, took joy in having me hang out there. His friends would ask, ‘What’s he doing here?’ He’d say ‘Hey, that’s my little brother. He’s cool. He can play.’ And so it went. He taught me to play open chords and songs of the day,” Gary said.

“He would smack me when I didn’t bar the B & E string when playing an F chord. Sometimes when we were playing he would have me continue playing while he made out with a girl.” They played in parks, at sock hops, and other places. Later they played in bars but Gary was underage, so he would have to go outside during breaks.

During high school he made his first guitar in woodshop. Later he got a Silvertone.

While he was serving in the Army he started performing in Officer/NCO Clubs. But he really started performing music as a career after his discharge in 1994.

Gary is a well-known name in the Salem area. In the mid 90’s he became active in the Salem music scene. He worked at Ranch Records and gave lessons at Guitar Castle. He booked shows at venues in Salem, Silverton, McMinnville and Stayton. During this time, he also played in the Boyd Small Big Blues Band, the Bob Beck Band, The Terraplanes and in the Gary Burford Trio.

Gary’s music comes from his soul. He’s had his struggles and has hit his lows. Drugs, alcohol, lost jobs, failed relationships, and time in jail. He can perform the blues, because he has lived the blues. A cancer diagnosis in 2012 was his wake up call. He’s battled back and is now living clean and playing blues music to tell his story.

He cites his older brother as one of his musical influences. “He was my first teacher, took me to concerts, and let me play at his gigs sometimes.”

He also lists The 3 Kings, Magic Sam, Muddy Waters, Howlin’ Wolf, Boyd Small, Terry Robb, Jim Wallace, Marco Salvo, Lloyd Jones, Monty Amundsen and the list goes on. “I’ve played with and know most of, if not all, of the musicians in the area. I hate to leave any of them out,” he said.

Gary says his musical style come from a lifetime of listening and also from playing with those gracious enough to let him in.

He credits his guitar skills through association with great musicians and private lessons. He also minored in music at University of Texas El Paso.

He has been recognized by the Statesman Journal as best musician two times and best band four times. He was also nominated as Best Regional Act by the CBA.

In 1998 the Gary Burford Trio put out the CD, Youre Gonna See, produced by Terry Robb. Guest musicians on the recording included Paul Delay, Jim Wallace and Terry Robb.

In 2015 he joined with Randy Flook and they put out a CD called Redemption. Dave Fleschner was a guest musician on that CD.

He’s also working on a CD called Low Down Shack. It’s a compilation of rock n’ roll of songs he wrote when he was a teenager.

Musicians and Bandmates
Over the years, Gary has performed with musicians such as Terry Robb, Curtis Salgado, Boyd Small, Warren Haynes, Allen Woody, Paulette Davis, Sonny Hess, Garry Meziere, John Fahey, Mark Lemhouse, Lloyd Jones, and others. He says he has worked in support of many regional and national blues acts—too many to list.

His bandmates, past and present, include: Bob Beck on bass; Dennis Ayers on drums; George Edmonston on bass; Boyd Small and Beth Poore on sax; and Dave Fleschner on keyboards.

“I want to emphasize how much Terry Robb has helped me by performing with me at my gigs and having me perform at high profile gigs that he was doing. Also, Boyd Small has been a great friend and band mate. Dennis Ayers, Bob Beck, George Edmonson and Dave Fleschner have put up with me, supported and performed hundreds of gigs and most certainly are the best part of anything I am,” Gary said.

Gary and Terry are working on a theatre-type acoustic tour throughout the NW in 2018. He’ll also be working with Boyd doing the band thing throughout the in 2018. And of course the Burford Trio will be playing, as well.

In Closing
“I have been blessed to have been able to perform, book, produce and promote many shows. I’ve worked with hero’s who have influenced, mentored me, and become lifelong friends,” Gary said.

“It should be a busy 2018. You can keep up with me through: my website,; my Facebook page at or at ReverbNation.”

Mick Schafer

Mick SchaferGuitarist and vocalist Mick Schafer has been singing since childhood, but ventured to Europe when he was 20 to perform for tips and meals. He spent the early 70’s playing music around Europe. He always wanted to perform professionally but when he moved back to the states, he was beset with depression and couldn’t manage it.

In the early 2000’s he started getting paid gigs fronting Blackberry Jam (later known as Tree Top Tribe.) They started in such venues as Spring Creek Coffee House in Milwaukie and Pizza Schmizza in Raleigh Hills, working up to the White Eagle, Buffalo Gap, O’Conners, Laurelthirst Tavern, Alberta Street Pub, the Melody Ballroom and the Brickhouse.

“We also played larger outdoor venues during the summer, including corporate engagements, and some fundraising jobs for regional nonprofits. Now I have the distinct pleasure of playing shows with an array of stellar local musicians as The Mick Schafer Band in support of my new record, One Silken Scarf,” according to Mick.


“My first relationship with music must have been in utero. Way before I was born, my mother loved playing the piano, especially Mozart and Boogie Woogie. Later, she would play me to sleep at night with that beautiful piano,” Mick said.

“After we moved to California, Dad started a company that manufactured automated radio station equipment. He brought home this amazing jukebox and loaded it up with 45’s. I couldn’t get enough of Sam Cooke and Elvis Presley. Then the avalanche: Dave Clark 5, Kinks, Stones, Beatles, Doors, Ray Charles, Van Morrison, Santana, Richie Havens and Bob Dylan.”

“More recently, Tom Waits, Sting, Neville Brothers, Elvis Costello, Lyle Lovett, Los Lobos, Donna the Buffalo, Stevie Ray Vaughn, Buddy Guy and all the other blues musicians from Antone’s: Home of the Blues. Local blues artists that inspire me are Jody Carroll, Karen Lovely and the Thunder Brothers.”

Mick’s work has been compared to a mash up of Los Lobos, Lyle Lovett, and Elvis Costello. “They say I have a gravelly soulful voice. I know from my earlier years that I mix roots music with love and loss, in what I hope delivers an inspired connection with my audience and their life experience.”

Musical Training

Mick says his musical training includes a course at PSU (Lisa Marsh on Body Mapping for musicians) and at PCC (Music 101 so he could begin to read charts). He also took a guitar lesson from Joe McMurrian (now Jody Carroll). “And more recently the inimitable Mel Kubik has supported my vocal growth. I’m always learning from musicians around me, otherwise I’m self-taught.”

CD’s in the Works

In addition to his release One Silken Scarf, Mick is getting ready to release a digital 45 EP called Gypsy Blues that Timmer Blakely produced and Dennis Carter engineered at Falcon Studios.

Musicians and Bandmates

In his musical adventures, Mick has played with several musicians, including Dave Captein, Ken “Willie” Scandlyn, John Moore, Timmer Blakely, Jason JT Thomas, Jesse Samsel, Ken Brewer, Edward Coleman III, John Nastos, Thomas Barber, and Duncan Branom.

The Mick Schafer Band hosts many talented local artists at each of their shows. “We are a little different, in that we have a veritable stable of musicians who come play with us. Bob Stark put an outstanding band together for One Silken Scarf: Dave Captein (Oregon Music Hall of Fame) on standup and P bass; Jason JT Thomas (from Lisa Mann’s Band) on electric guitars; Michael Elson (from Excellent Gentlemen) on keyboards; and Jeramy Burchett (world class session drummer) on drums. Except for Jeramy, this group played the Rose Festival with The Mick Schafer Band this summer.

The bandmembers who go back several years with Mick are: Tom Esch on fiddle, bass, banjo, tele; and The Colin Trio, which is made up of Colin Hogin on keyboards and vocals, Brian Link on bass and Matt Ramsdell on drums. When The Colin Trio isn’t available, it opens up the possibility of different and amazing combinations anchored by Timmer Blakely on bass and JT Thomas on strat.

Keyboard players Ken Brewer and Paul Paresa have done some recent shows. Horns are now a part of the Mick Schafer Band equation. John Nastos wrote the horn parts for One Silken Scarf and played alto sax on the record with Dave Evans on tenor sax, Thomas Barber on trumpet and John Moak on trombone. At recent shows other horn players have effectively sat in: Marc Hutchinson or Nathan Carver Smith on sax; Dick Titterington, John Dover, or Kristian Woods on trumpet.

Band members who have moved on to other successful projects are: drummer Alex Yore to the March Fourth Marching Band; cello player Aubrey Webber to the Double Clicks; and harmonica player Garrett Pessin who played with Michael Quinby before heading back to Hawaii.

In Closing

Upcoming shows for The Mick Schafer Band can be found at You can find them Saturday, Dec. 16 at the Brickhouse Bar and Grill in Vancouver, WA. Then on Thursday, Dec. 21 at Clark’s Bistro and Pub in Hillsboro. Take time out of the busy holiday schedule to enjoy some great music at one of these shows.