by Mike Breen
The Cincy Blues Fest returns for its 21st annual event this weekend
This weekend, the Cincy Blues Fest — presented annually by
the Cincy Blues Society — returns for its 21st year, a remarkable
accomplishment for a music festival of any sort. The festival kicks off
tonight and continues tomorrow at Sawyer Point along the riverfront.
The weekend features two main stage acts with serious ties
to Cincinnati’s Blues past. Educator, author, DJ, singer and harmonica
player Steven Tracy returns to Cincy to play the main stage on tonight
at 7 p.m. with his band the Crawling Kingsnakes. A Walnut Hills High
School graduate, Tracy worked with local Blues icons like Pigmeat
Jarrett and Big Joe Duskin, becoming a part of the scene he’d later dig
deeper into in the 1993 book, Going to Cincinnati: A History of the Blues in the Queen City.
His writing career is extensive — Tracy has written dozens of album
liner notes and edited/wrote/intro-ed several other books on a variety
of subjects. Today, Tracy is a professor of Afro-American Studies at
University of Massachusetts Amherst.
Saturday at 6 p.m. on the fest’s main stage, Stacy
Mitchhart and his band are slated to perform. Mitchhart grew up in
Cincinnati and spent time playing music on the East and West Coasts
before returning to his hometown in the early 1990s and forming Stacy
Mitchhart and Blues-U-Can-Use, a staple on the local Blues scene for a
few years. After a move to Nashville, Tenn., in the mid-’90s,
Mitchhart’s musical career really took off. His albums have been widely
acclaimed and done well commercially — his 2011 release, Live from B.B. King’s, debuted at No. 6 on the Billboard
Blues charts — and he’s received high-praise for his showmanship and
remarkable Blues voice. In 2008, Mitchhart was the subject of the
well-received documentary NashVegas Blues.
Here is tonight's main stage schedule:
5:45-6:45 p.m. Dave Muskett
7:00-8:15 p.m. Steve Tracy & the Crawling Kingsnakes
8:30-10 p.m. Reba Russell Band
10:15-11:45 p.m. Watermelon Slim & the Workers
And here's the lineup for the Main Stage tomorrow:
4:15-4:45 p.m. Blues in the Schools (BITS) Band5-5:45 p.m. The Juice
6-7 p.m. Stacy Mitchhart Band
7:15-8:30 p.m. Nikki Hill
8:45-10:00 p.m. Honey Island Swamp Band
10:15-11:45 p.m. Ana Popovic (all the way from Serbia!)
Some of the coolest things at the Cincy Blues Fest can be
found on the “specialty” stages — a “specialty” of the fest — which this
year includes a “Women of the Blues” stage on Friday, headlined by
national act EG Knight and also featuring locals Rio & The Ramblers,
The Juice and Tempted Souls Band.
Here is the "Women of the Blues" stage ((aka the Arches stage) schedule for tonight :
5:45-7 p.m. Rio & the Ramblers
7:15-8:30 p.m. The Juice
8:45-10:00 p.m. Tempted Souls Band
10:15-11:45 p.m. EG Kight
Saturday sees the return of the “Boogie Woogie Hall of
Fame Piano Stage,” featuring an international cast of top-shelf Boogie
Woogie pianists, including local favorite Ricky Nye and former locals
(now Florida-based) Liz Pennock & Dr. Blues. The house band for the
Boogie Woogie stage is Johnny Vidacovich (drums), George Bedard (guitar)
and Chris Douglas (bass).
Saturday's Boogie Woogie Piano Hall of Fame stage (aka Arches stage) lineup:
4:30 p.m. Ben Levin
5 p.m. Ari Borger
5:40 p.m. Ricky Nye
6:20 p.m. Liz Pennock & Dr. Blues
7:10 p.m. Bruce Katz
7:50 p.m. Al Hill
8:30 p.m. Axel Zwingenberger & Lila Ammons
9:10 p.m. Joshua Paxton
10 p.m. David Vest
10:40 p.m. Bob Seeley
11:20 p.m. Chris Conz
The Blues Fest again presents the St. Vincent De Paul Local
Stage on both days of the event, always an excellent snapshot of the
current local Blues scene.
Friday's St. Vincent De Paul Local Stage schedule:
5:45-6:45 p.m. Thomas Long & Blue Sacrifice
7-8 p.m. Noah Wotherspoon Band
8:15-9:15 p.m. Ralph & the Rhythm Hounds
9:30-10:30 p.m. Brad Hatfield Band
10:45 p.m.-12 a.m. G Miles & the HitmenSaturday's St. Vincent De Paul Local Stage lineup:
4:30-5:30 p.m. The Blue Birds Big Band
5:45-6:45 p.m. Jay Jesse Johnson Band
7-8 p.m. The SoulFixers
8:15-9:15 p.m. Doug Hart Band
9:30-10:30 p.m. Chuck Brisbin & the Tuna Project
10:45 p.m.-12 a.m. Leroy Ellington Blues Band
Here is a map of the Blues Fest grounds:
Tickets are $15 for Friday, $20 for Saturday or $25 for a
two-day pass (tickets can be purchased at the gates or here). Visit
cincybluesfest.org for everything else you need to know about the
Friday • Sawyer Point • Cincy Blues Fest Main Stage
0 Comments · Wednesday, July 31, 2013
Bill “Watermelon Slim” Homans has the
kind of Blues backstory that would never translate to the silver screen
because no one would believe it. As a singer, songwriter and guitarist,
Slim’s history stretches back to the early ’70s, when he released Merry Airbrakes, the only full-length Vietnam protest album recorded by an actual Vietnam veteran.
Plus, It's Commonly Jazz returns
0 Comments · Wednesday, July 31, 2013
This weekend, the Cincy Blues Fest —
presented annually by the Cincy Blues Society — returns for its 21st
year, a remarkable accomplishment for a music festival of any sort.
by Jac Kern
at 10:36 AM | Permalink
Cincy Blues Fest is back at Sawyer Point
this weekend celebrating its 20th anniversary. The volunteer-driven festival
showcases quality Blues entertainment on multiple stages year after year.
Performances run 5 p.m.-midnight Friday and 4 p.m.-midnight Saturday.
Adonis Nightclub opens the pool for Greater Cincinnati Human Rights Campaign’s dive-in movie night Friday. Doors open at 7 p.m.
and Bridesmaids will be shown on the
big screen at 9:30. Come early to hang out poolside and enjoy a men’s swimwear
fashion show by Knickers XY at 8:30 p.m. After the show, there will be a silent
auction for those very sexy suits! When else can you take the knickers right
off a model? A photo booth and plenty of grub will be on hand all night. Tickets
are $20 at the door.
Find your polo, iron your pleated skirt and lather on the sunscreen —
it’s time for the Western & Southern Open! One of tennis’ oldest and largest tournaments kicks off Saturday at the Lindner Family Tennis
Center in Mason. Matches continue through Aug. 19, featuring Maria Sharapova, recent
Olympic gold medalist Andy Murray and Serena Williams. There
will even be live music from noon-2 and 5-7 p.m. Aug.12-18. Get tickets,
schedules and directions here.
Saturday is Community Art Centers Day, presented by ArtsWave. Cincinnati is lucky to have a community center where
children and adults can express themselves creatively in almost every major
neighborhood. On Saturday, these participating centers will host open houses
and present parades, demos, performances and more. Kennedy Heights Arts Center,
Sharonville Fine Arts Center and Clifton Cultural Arts Center are just a few
locations celebrating and showing off their stuff this weekend.
Second weekends = extra fun in Northside and OTR. Head to Northside
Saturday to check out extended hours and
specials at the neighborhood’s great galleries, restaurants, bars and
businesses, 6-10 p.m. Second Sundays on Main keep
the party going through the weekend. This month’s theme is Growth &
Wellness, so come harness your chi or just recover from your hangover with
food vendors, street performers, yoga demos, food and wine pairings, shopping
and live music. The street fest takes over Main Street between Thirteenth and
Liberty, noon-5 p.m.
Hamilton County Fair and Great Inland Seafood Festival
continue through Sunday. And be sure to swing by Fountain Square Friday for the
Indie Craft Market, coinciding with
MidPoint Indie Summer featuring A Place to Bury Strangers, The
Kansas Bible Company and Sidewalk Chalk.
by Mike Breen
Popular Blues showcase returns to Sawyer Point for weekend of Blues you can use
By all accounts (from people who actually attended or performed), last month’s huge Bunbury Music Festival was one of the best-run fests of its kind this area has ever seen. Organizer Bill Donabedian no doubt scored some tips from the operators of the big annual Blues celebration, the volunteer-driven Cincy Blues Fest, which has been doing the “well-run music festival” thing at Sawyer Point Park along the riverfront for many years now. This weekend, the Cincy Blues Fest — one of the finest Blues events in the Midwest — returns to Sawyer Point to celebrate its 20th anniversary. That's a remarkable two decades of providing Greater Cincinnati live music lovers with some of the
finest Blues being made locally, regionally and nationally, a rare and impressive achievement for any music festival. This year’s main stage national headliners are especially strong — Webb Wilder on Friday and Duke Robillard on Saturday — but the Cincy Blues Fest always has a ton of interesting and engaging artists performing throughout the fest’s multiple stages.
Aside from the lineup featuring a few
higher quality headliners than the past couple of years (like Robillard, Wilder, Trampled Under Foot, Super Chikan, Sista Monica, etc.),
this year’s 20th anniversary celebration isn’t really being overblown,
likely because the Cincy Blues Society and the army of volunteers that
work the fest always do such an amazing job running the event; it’s
already quite special, no matter what birthday the fest is celebrating.
One of my favorite elements of the Blues
Fest is its undying support for our local players and singers. This
year, Cincy Blues Challenge winners Chris Yakopcic and the Noah
Wotherspoon Band have main-stage slots (they’ll also go to Memphis this
winter to compete for Cincinnati in the International Blues Challenge).
Yakopcic performs at 5:45 p.m. Friday, while Wotherspoon and Co. play at
the same time Saturday (following a band of students associated with
the Blues in the Schools program, for which the fest raises money).
The three side stages — always creatively
programmed — have a heavy local presence. Friday, visit the “Blues: The
Next Generation” stage for sets by younger area acts like the Wade
Baker Trio, Brian Keith Wallen Band, Scotty Bratcher and (again!) Noah
Wotherspoon and his band. The “Next Gen” stage starts at 5:15 p.m.
Saturday. Friday "The Next Generation of Blues" stage lineup5:15 p.m. Wade Baker Trio6:20 p.m. Jellico Motel7:05 p.m. Brian Keith Wallen Band8:10 p.m. Carson Diersing Band9:25 p.m. Scotty Bratcher10:40 p.m. Noah Wotherspoon Band
As the name suggests, the St. Vincent
DePaul Local Stage is chock full of local talent. Friday, the stage
features Bad Men on a Mission, Them Bones, the Doug Hart Band, Leroy
Ellington’s Blues Band and Blue Sacrifice.
Saturday, catch the Blue
Birds Big Band, the Gradual Taylor Band, the Leo Clarke Band, The Juice,
Chuck Brisbin & the Tuna Project and Balderdash. Friday St. Vincent De Paul Local Stage lineup5:45-6:45 p.m. Bad Men on a Mission7:00-8:00 p.m. Them Bones8:15-9:15 p.m. Doug Hart Band9:30-10:30 p.m. Leroy Ellington’s Blues Band10:45pm-12:00 a.m. Blue SacrificeSaturday St. Vincent De Paul Local Stage lineup 4:30-5:30 p.m. Blue Birds Big Band5:45-6:45 p.m. The Gradual Taylor Band7:00-8:00 p.m. The Leo Clarke Band8:15-9:15 p.m. The Juice9:30-10:30 p.m. Chuck Brisbin & the Tuna Project10:45-11:45 p.m. Balderdash
And perhaps the fest’s most notable and
renowned side stage, the unique Boogie Woogie Piano Hall of Fame Stage,
on Saturday will feature appearances by Jimmy Rogers, Todd Hepburn, Liz
Pennock & Dr. Blues and Ricky Nye, plus players from across the
planet. The Boogie Woogie stage closes out with a “grand finale jam”
just before midnight. Saturday Boogie Woogie Piano Hall of Fame Stage lineup4:30 p.m. Jimmy Rogers5:10 p.m. Todd Hepburn5:50 p.m. Liz Pennock & Dr. Blues6:50 p.m. Ricky Nye7:40 p.m. Mark Braun8:30 p.m. Rob Rio9:20 p.m. Cynthia Girtley10:10 p.m. Bob Seeley11:00 p.m. Fabrice Eulry11:50 p.m. Grand Finale JamHere are the lineups for the Budweiser Main Stage this weekend:Friday Budweiser Main Stage lineup 5:45-6:45 p.m. Chris Yakopcic7:00-8:15 p.m. Super Chikan8:30-10:00 p.m. Sista Monica10:15-11:45 p.m. Webb WilderSaturday Budweiser Main Stage lineup5:00-5:30 p.m. Blues in the School (BITS) Band5:45-6:45 p.m. Noah Wotherspoon Band7:00-8:15 p.m. Southern Hospitality8:30-10:00 p.m. Trampled Under Foot10:15-11:45 p.m. Duke RobillardTickets are $20 each day (two-day passes are
available Friday at the gates for $30), or grab yours early through
brownpapertickets.com for a $5 discount. Or you can join the Cincy Blues
Society (cincyblues.org), the creators and managers of Cincy Blues
Fest, to receive an even deeper discount.
Be sure to pick up a copy of this week's CityBeat, which includes a pull-out guide for the Cincy Blues Fest, with artist bios, schedules and more. For further ticket info, updates, details on the new Cincy Blues Fest mobile app and much more, visit cincybluesfest.org.
1 Comment · Wednesday, August 8, 2012
The Cincy Blues Fest, widely considered
one of the best of its kind in the region, celebrates a remarkable 20
years of providing Greater Cincinnati live music lovers with some of the
finest Blues being made locally, regionally and nationally. Plus, new releases due this week from The Blues Merchants,
Gorges, Damn It To
Hell, Kissing Daylight and Jody Stapleton and the Generals
Plus, Browngrass 2012, New Noise Showcase and Stanley's Blues & BBQ offer variety of local performers
0 Comments · Wednesday, July 18, 2012
Cincy Punk Pop quintet Loudmouth has played
well-attended gigs regularly around town for the past half decade or so,
eventually becoming headliners of self-booked multi-band shows at
places like Madison Theater in Covington. This Friday, the group returns
to the club for its farewell show and the release party for its final
album, the eight-song Future Boredom.
Nineteen reasons you should attend Cincy Blues Fest’s 19th annual event
0 Comments · Wednesday, August 3, 2011
2012’s Cincy Blues Fest is sure to have many unique features and surprises, but you could say that every year. But there are tons of reasons to attend the 2011 event Friday and Saturday at Sawyer Point. In honor of its 19th anniversary, we give you the Top 19 in easy-to-digest list form.
August 6 • Sawyer Point
0 Comments · Friday, August 6, 2010
The Cincy Blues Fest returns to Sawyer Point Friday and Saturday. Along with quality headliners, organizers from the Cincy Blues Society will once again present some cool side-stage offerings and loads of local performers. Friday night's highlights include the New Orleans-flavored "Pardi Gras" stage and singer Candye Kane.