Jonny Lang press photoIt has been seven years since Jonny Lang has last released a studio album. Titled Fight For My Soul, it follows up where his 2006 Grammy Award winning disc Turn Around left off. And with the new recording a massive tour across the country has been lined up with Lang making a return appearance in Portland at The Roseland Theater on Sunday, January 19th. For the past sixteen years, since his debut album Lie To Me first brought attention onto the then 16-year-old musician, Lang has built a strong reputation as a dynamic performer and stellar guitarist that has taken him from his hometown of Fargo, North Dakota to Minneapolis and the world. He has appeared onstage with musical heavy weights including The Rolling Stones, Aerosmith, Sting, BB King and Buddy Guy.

Showtime for Jonny Lang is 8:00 pm. Tickets are available with prices from $26.50-$39.50. This is a 21 & older only show. The Roseland Theater is located at 8 NW Sixth Avenue.

Well, we do not typically anticipate having to make some small changes now and then, but sometimes we just cannot help it. Please make note that our monthly membership meetings in both January and February will not be taking place on the first Wednesday of the month.

The first Wednesday in January falls on the New Years Day holiday and, like most people, the staff at The Melody Ballroom would likely enjoy spending it with their families, so we will be holding our meeting the following week on Wednesday, January 8th.

In February, we will be holding the meeting on the first Thursday of the month, the 6th. This is to allow The Melody Ballroom to schedule a huge party with more than 450 people attending. We are donated the use of the room every month and this is the first time I can recall in the many years we’ve been at The Melody that they have asked us to make this exception, so it is only fair that we make the move to allow them to be able to host this paying event. It is only one night later, something we have done with the Muddy Awards every year.

One other date change of note for now, a great deal of the Board of Directors will be traveling to Memphis for the International Blues Challenge. So in order to still have a Board meeting for the month, and to have a quorum for voting purposes, we will be moving this meeting to January 14th. Board meetings are open for all to attend and we are currently seeking At Large members to help us out. Let us know in advance if you wish to attend as the office is in a secure building and we’d have to let you in. The office is located at 2020 SE 7th, just about four blocks south of Duff’s Garage.

Meeting times are still the same. 7:00 pm for the membership meetings and 6:30 for the board meetings. Thank you for understanding.

Matt Andersen - photo by Greg JohnsonMatt Andersen may not be the most recognized performer hailing from Canada, but he certainly belongs among those who deserve the attention. Hailing from Perth-Andover, New Brunswick, this will be Andersen’s first appearance in Portland when he takes the stage at Mississippi Studios on Friday, January 24th. His narrative-driven writing cuts through the soul, blending blues and folk, encompassed in total honesty. He takes listeners on a ride with his diverse musical styles, skilled guitar work and over-the-top showmanship. Matt’s intimate, high-energy performances have captivated audiences across the world, from Canada, to the US, to Australia and the UK, from small clubs to festivals. Andersen has been honored multiple times with the Canadian Maple Blues Awards, including receiving the Entertainer of the Year and Acoustic Artist of the Year in 2011, a British Blues Award nomination in 2012, and he was the overall winner of the International Blues Challenge in the Solo/Duo competition in 2010. He is currently on tour in the United States and Canada to promote his forth-coming CD Weightless, which will be released on February 4th.

Mississippi Studios is located at 3939 N Mississippi Ave, doors open at 8:00 pm with showtime starting at 8:30. Tickets are available through for $15.00, there will be a $2.00 increase on day of show. 21 and over only.

Mark Hummel - press photoMark Hummel, well known as one of the most amazing harmonica masters on the blues circuit today, has been presenting his acclaimed Harmonica Blowout showcases since 1991. Over that time he has brought with him a virtual who’s who of the finest harp players to be found and his most current West Coast tour is shaping up to be one of the best. His latest recording titled Remembering Little Walter that offers live tracks from a recent California Blowout tour has been nominated for two 2014 Blues Music Awards including Album of the Year. And as that last tour featured the music of Little Walter, the new tour is taking on the theme of the music of Sonny Boy Williamson.

The Mark Hummel Blowout will be taking stage in Portland on Sunday, January 19th at The Aladdin Theater, 3017 SE Milwaukie Avenue for an 8:00 pm show. The line-up is incredible, offering The Godfather of British Blues John Mayall, the Gentleman of the Blues James Harman, 2013 Blues Music Award Harmonica Player of the Year Rick Estrin and Mark Hummel himself all throwing down in the Mississippi saxophone. And if that was not a strong enough grouping, throw in the amazing Little Charlie Baty on guitar. This is a not to miss event. Tickets are $33.50 advance and $35.00 day of show and can be purchased at either the Aladdin box office or on-line at

2014 CBA Board bwYour 2014 Cascade Blues Association Board of Directors (left to right) Art Bullis, At Large Member; Greg Johnson, President; Wendy Schumer, Vice President; Jon Pierce, Secretary; Merry Larsen, Treasurer; KimberLee Deane, Membership Secretary

Log Cabin Blues
Self Produced


Micah Kesselring CD coverMicah Kesselring started playing guitar when he was nine years old and decided that the blues was his music of choice at fourteen. Now at the ripe old age of twenty, he has firmly ensconced himself into the Ohio blues scene, and has made an impression on many across the  country with his performances. Kesselring has competed in the International Blues Challenge three times and made the semi-finals with each appearance. He will be returning once again in 2014. Other highlights of his young career have seen him share the stage with Otis Taylor at the 2009 Blues Music Awards and Keb’ Mo’ at Columbus’ Project Blues Review, touring Florida with the Sean Carney Band, performing as a featured youth act at Tacoma, Washington’s Gray Skies Blues Festival and as a repeat artist at the Centrum Blues Festival & Workshops.

Recently Kesselring has released his debut album, Log Cabin Blues. Recorded in his own home studio, he plays every instrument on the disc and penned seven of the ten tracks offered. As an acoustic artist, he finds himself influenced by many of the legendary figures of Piedmont and Delta blues, as well as many modern day players like Alvin Youngbood-Hart, Mary Flower, Phil Wiggins and Rich Del Grosso. The blues offers him an outlet to play music that is heartfelt and can cover any emotion he may be feeling. Unlike other young musicians who may play blues music at a young age that are drawn away as they age, Kesselring has found his niche and should be an artist that will carry on the tradition set forth by those elder influences.

Selections on Log Cabin Blues are all outstanding. Be they the covers of Charlie Patton like “Pony Blues,” Howlin’ Wolf on “Forty-Four” or Son House’s “Preachin’ The  Blues,” he places his own flavoring into each, making these well-covered numbers have new life. He is an accomplished songwriter already as displayed on tracks like the opening “Damned Soul Blues” or “Riverbend Blues.” He is also quite adept at multiple instruments and Americana readings. His song “Kit’s Tune” stems from the Appalachian music of his background in Southern Ohio and his work on the banjo on this track fits the region’s sound to a tee. “Mean Uptown Mama” has the Piedmont feel of John Cephas and the closing track “CGGB” is a blistering slide performance on cigar-box guitar. The title track “Log Cabin Blues” is reminiscent of songs like Robert Johnson’s “Red Hot” or Lil Johnson “Peanut Man.” Quite impressive with its good time feel and masterful playing.

Micah Kesselring is still young in years, but his musicianship belies a player many times older. This is an artist that should grasp the next generation of blues players and if that is in fact the case they’re in capable hands.


Total Time: 34:59

Damned Soul Blues / Preachin’ The Blues / Kit’s Tune / Liquor Man Blues / Riverbend Blues / Mean Uptown Mama / Forty-Four / Pony Blues / Log Cabin Blues / CBGB


Soul Changes
Tastee Tone

Dave Keller CD coverFollowing up on his sensational 2011 release Where I‘m Coming From that garnered recognition with being named the Best Self-Produced CD of the year by The Blues Foundation, Dave Keller wasted no time in putting together another stellar recording with Soul Changes. Recorded in both Memphis and in Brooklyn, this disc places Keller amongst the top in the business when it comes to oh so perfect soulful singing.

     For his sessions in Memphis, he went to the best. Recorded at Royal Studios, whose output included all the greats from folk like Al Green, Ann Peebles, Syl Johnson and Otis Clay, he also teamed up with the studio’s legendary Hi Rhythm Section of Teenie Hodges on guitar, Leroy Hodges on bass, and Charles Hodges on organ, along with recruiting the great Bobby Manuel on guitar. The talent rubbed off in the right way for Keller as his original tracks here come across every bit as soulful and tasteful as those recorded by the masters back in the ‘60s and ‘70s.

Special note for original songs like “17 Years” that describe the pain of a failed marriage, the tenderness of the ballad “One More Time,” the catchy chorus of “I Wish We’d Kissed” and The Royal Horns on “Searchin’ For A Sign” make it easy to imagine Al Green doing this song, but Keller is simply amazing on all these self-penned tracks.

      In Brooklyn, Keller employed the New York-based band The Revelations to provide his backing. The five numbers offered from these sessions are all covers of songs that are personal favorites of Keller’s. Numbers by The O’Jays, Otis Clay and Bobby Womack are included. And though they may be recognized numbers in their original incarnation, Keller takes them a step further marking them as his own. Take a song as well-known as Smokey Robinson’s composition for The Temptations, “Don’t Look Back,” it retains all of the original feel, but Keller’s presentation comes off just as strong in its own right. To take songs that are so well recognized and bringing yet new life to them is a masterful feat in itself. Keller does that kind of justice to all of these covers.

      In a year that saw brilliant releases in the soul-blues genre, Dave Keller has accomplished a spot right near the very top alongside Otis Clay and Johnny Rawls. Not only one of the finest soul recordings of the year, Soul Changes is one of the absolute best releases of any genre. Hands down a winner!


Total Time: 44:11

Searchin’ For A Sign / 17 Years / Old Man’s Lullabye / I Wish We’d Kissed / Lonely And I / One More Time / It’s Too Strong / Back In Love Again / Don’t Look Back / Heart On A String / Is It Over?

The Dusty 45s press photoSeattle’s Dusty 45s have a reputation for firing up the crowd. They deliver their rockin’, high-energy music at just the right throttle to keep fans on their feet, begging for more. Over the years, the group has devoured styles ranging from twang country, jump blues, surf, and pure rock & roll, mixed-in elements from influences such as Dixieland and Jazz, and now serve-it-up as a sizzling sound all their own. With two wailing electric guitars, a slappin’ upright bass and some guaranteed knock-down drumming, they take it to 11 with a blazing trumpet.

Singer/songwriter and front man Billy Joe Huels leads the band with an engaging, charismatic stage presence, a rippin’ guitar, and a trumpet which serves as an extension of himself. By the end of the show, the trumpet ends up on fire, literally. His original songs are delivered with panache by Seattle’s finest roots-rock wrecking crew: Jerry Battista on lead guitar, Kelly Van Camp on drums, and Jeff Gray on upright bass.

The Dusty 45s have long been a favorite act of Portland audiences. They will be returning to town for a show at the Doug Fir Lounge on Friday, January 31st. show time is 9:00 pm. Tickets are $10.00 – $12.00 and available through This is a 21 & over show.


 hamilton loomis bw photo by Greg JohnsonHamilton Loomis offers original blues with a nice flavoring of soul and funk. He met one of his heroes, Bo Diddley, at an early age, and the two became good friends. The elder bluesman mentored Loomis, remarking about the youngster’s music, “You got to put some seasonin’ in what you’re doin’, and this boy’s got the whole salt shaker!” Hamilton Loomis hailing from Texas also had the fortunate opportunity to learn first-hand from many of the state’s renowned musicians, such as Johnny Copeland, Gatemouth Brown, Joe Hughes and Albert Collins. He is one of the young artists at the forefront of bringing blues based American music into the 21st century and redefining it for a contemporary audience. Spanning youth and tradition, he bridges the gap between generations of music-lovers both in the U.S. and around the world.

Loomis returns to Portland on Saturday, January 25th, for a 9:00 pm show at the Starday Tavern, 6517 SE Foster Rd. Admission is $10.00 and this is a Cascade Blues Association co-sponsored event, so bring your membership card to receive $1.00 discount on entry. Hamilton Loomis brings a dynamic, energetic show every time out. This is one show that is sure to bring a great deal of excitement to all in attendance.

Juke Joint Chapel
Henrietta Records

Charlie Musselwhite CD coverThe Juke Joint Chapel is located at the Shack Up Inn in Clarksdale, Mississippi and it is exactly the type of church that any blues aficionado would feel right at home partaking in its services. Especially when the sermon is being presented by blues harp legend Charlie Musselwhite. This live recording offers a dozen nuggets of Musselwhite’s repertoire, including all phases of his career. Backed by a stellar band that offers young guitar ace Matthew Stubbs, bassist Mike Phillips and June Core laying down his ever steady drum patterns. This grouping compliments Musselwhite with Stubbs delivering outright sensational guitar, but none of the players overshadow their leader. You know from beginning to end just who the star of this show is.

Juke Joint Chapel opens with a handful of cover tracks that all have been imprinted with that classic Musselwhite sound. His harmonica work and vocals are instantly recognized as he starts out with Eddie Taylor’s “Bad Boy,” and he even finds a way of throwing a little “CC Rider” into the opening harp run during the song. He follows with terrific covers by Shaky Jake, Tony Joe White, Billy Boy Arnold and Little Walter before breaking out with a run of five of his most loved originals. Autobiographical pieces like “Strange Land” and “Blues Overtook Me” are always welcome favorites during his shows. And the Brazilian flavored “Feel It In Your Heart” from the Rough News album showcases a nice diversion in this exciting set. “I’m Going Home” again is highlighted by Stubbs’ string work and it leads into the closing track “Christo Redentor.” Written by Duke Pearson “Christo Redentor” is perhaps Musselwhite’s signature song. The instrumental was featured on his first album released more than forty-five years ago and to this day is the one number everybody anticipates in his performances. There is no disappointing with this take of the song, the perfect way to end a brilliant show.

There is a reason why Charlie Musselwhite has been one of the most favored blues artists for more than four decades. It is because his music is consistently over the top without being overstated and his concerts are always riveting. That is depicted rightfully so with Juke Joint Chapel. For anybody who is a fan of Musselwhite, harmonica or traditional blues, this is what you’re looking for.


Total Time: 70:31

Bad Boy / Roll Your Money Maker / As The Crow Flies / Gone Too Long / It Ain’t Right / Strange Land / Blues Overtook Me / River Hip Mama / Blues Why Do You Worry Me? / Feel It In Your Heart / I’m Going Home / Christo Redentor