Winthrop AD 5X8 b&wThis year’s 27th Anniversary of the Winthrop Rhythm & Blues Festival is shaping up to be the best rhythm & blues PARTY yet!  COME SEE WHY!  The Award-Winning Winthrop Music Association presents the Festival July 18-20, 2014 at the Blues Ranch in Winthrop, Washington, nestled in the beautiful Methow Valley in the heart of the North Cascades, surrounded by some of the most spectacular scenery in the Pacific Northwest.

This year’s feature entertainers are:
Charlie Musselwhite, 2014 Grammy Award Winner; Royal Southern Brotherhood (featuring Cyril Neville, Devon Allman & Mike Zito); Shemekia Copeland; Roy Rogers; Carolyn Wonderland; Too Slim & The Taildraggers ;The Soul of John Black with Jim Pugh on keys; The Holmes Brothers; Curley Taylor & Zydeco Trouble; Homemade Jamz; Chris O’Leary Band; Doctorfunk; David Vest, solo; Lady “A” & Stan Street, our Masters of Ceremonies.

Three days packed full of Rhythm & Blues!  Washington State’s largest and longest running blues festival kicks off 7:30 pm, Friday, July 18 with its early show, the “Lowdown Hoedown”, in the Big Top Tent Beer Garden at the Blues Ranch featuring Winthrop favorites Too Slim & the Taildraggers, The Soul of John Black, and the funky soul sounds of DoctorfunK in a special fundraising concert for The Cove Food Bank in Twisp, WA. Saturday and Sunday music starts at 11 am and runs until 2 am. On-site camping ($45 for the weekend), free showers, food and craft vendors, shade tents, and beer garden are all located on the Blues Ranch grounds on the beautiful Methow River. The Friday night Beer Garden Show is $10 or free with weekend pass. A weekend pass is $90 in advance, $100 at the gate. For complete schedule, tickets, and lodging information please visit our website You can also find us at

The Winthrop Rhythm & Blues Festival is brought to you by The Winthrop Music Association, a 501(c)3 non-profit corporation. Proceeds from the Festival help support a number of cultural and civic organizations in the Methow Valley and beyond, including The Cove Food Bank, Methow Valley School District Music Program, Little Star Montessori School, Heart of the Methow Pow Wow, Oregon Food Bank/Waterfront Blues Festival, and the Washington Blues Society Musician’s Relief Fund. WMA is a member/affiliate of The Blues Foundation, Inland Empire Blues Society, Cascade Blues Association, Washington Blues Society, Methow Valley Arts Alliance. We welcome back long time festival supporters Winthrop RED APPLE Market and Odom Distributing.

Laying It Down
Bohemian Records

Arthur Migliazza CD coverI have always been enchanted by modern American piano playing, especially when it comes to stride, boogie and just upbeat paced players. Artists like Art Tatum, James P. Johnson, Little Brother Montgomery, James Booker, Thelonius Monk, Wynton Kelly, Otis Spann, Fats Waller, Jellyroll Morton . . . the list is endless. There are still many pianists out there today, though most just do not seem to receive the same type of recognition as their predecessors. The Pacific Northwest has produced or seen a number of great keyboard masters, including the likes of D.K.Stewart, David Vest, Steve Kerin and Janice Scroggins amongst them. Throw into that mix Seattle’s Arthur Migliazza.

Migliazza recently competed in the International Blues Challenge in Memphis and found himself in the finals. His latest release, Laying It Down, is almost like a piano history lesson. He covers a wide range of classic piano styles with tasty runs and it is out of this world fantastic.

New Orleans R&B is captured with wild abandon when Migliazza takes on Fats Domino’s “I’m Ready” and Huey smith’s “Rockin’ Pneumonia & The Boogie Woogie Flu.” That city has historically been synonymous with piano players and he pays tribute to perhaps its best known artist Professor Longhair on the song “Professor Calling Me” as he combines his own arrangements intermixed with Longhair’s “Tipitina.” And it sounds great. He also tips his hat to Paul Barbaran, though not a piano player but a drummer, Barbaran wrote one of New Orleans’ finest Mardi Gras numbers with “Bourbon Street Parade. Migliazza throws a little Dixieland backing into the piece by adding banjo and fiddle to the mix. You can just picture the second line heading down the street.

You simply have to smile when listening to the combination of “Sing, Sing, Sing” done as a medley with “Bumble Boogie.” The former, a Louis Prima song, fits in perfectly with the early 60s track by the appropriately named B. Bumble & The Stingers. It just kicks up the fun, showcasing Migliazza’s love for all things on the 88s.

And you know that his education on modern piano is truly complete as he includes a couple tracks by one of the absolute best of all time, Albert Ammons. Migliazza does the master true justice with his interpretations of “Boogie Woogie Stomp” and “The Boogie Rocks.”

For anybody who just cannot get enough boogie in your lives, Arthur Migliazza answers your wishes. Incredible, this man knows his way around a set of keys. Get prepared to have your heart start racing trying to keep up with his fingers as he takes you on a trip up one side and back down the other. You know this is piano candy and you’re sitting in that candy shop taking it all in.

Total Time: 50:06

Overture / I’m Ready / Rockin’ Pneumonia & The Boogie Woogie Flu / Boogie Woogie Stomp / Love You Mama / Sing Sing Sing – Bumble Boogie / Bourbon Street Parade / Thank You Blues/ Honky Tonk Train Blues / Suitcase Blues / St Louis Blues / Professor Calling Me / The Boogie Rocks

by Karen Lovely

In 1964, my grandmother brought out an old phonograph, selected a record from her collection of 78s and handed it to me. I removed the record from its

Karen Lovely CD coverpaper sleeve and holding it only by the edges, carefully placed it on the velvet turntable. I cranked the handle on the side of the machine until the record started spinning then gently lowered the heavy needle onto the outside rim of the shellac disc. Scratchy music sounded from the external horn and my Nana said “Let’s foxtrot!”  This was the beginning of my lifelong love affair with Prohibition era music.

Prohibition was a nationwide Constitutional ban on the sale, production, importation, and transportation of alcoholic beverages in effect from 1920 to 1933. In ways completely unintended by proponents of the 18th Amendment, Prohibition forever changed our cultural, societal and musical landscapes.

That change may have begun with the “Speakeasy” – a place where people from many different backgrounds, races, genders, sexual orientation, and socioeconomic statuses could drink and socialize together. Gangsters rubbed elbows with highbrows, men and women could smoke, drink (get splifficated) and dance to the new hot jazz and blues. From Delta fields and Storyville bordellos via the back rooms of countless speakeasies to the big city cabarets and night clubs, blues and jazz became the music that defined the Prohibition era.

Instrumental in popularizing the genre were the classic female blues singers of the 1920s and 30s – singers like Ma Rainey, Bessie Smith, Ethel Waters, Alberta Hunter, Lucille Hegamin, Ida Cox, Victoria Spivey and Sippie Wallace.  Female blues artists traveled up and down the east coast riding the rails and performing at the 100+ venues of the T.O.B.A. circuit (TOBA/Theater Owners Booking Association or as Ma Rainey liked to call it “Tough On Black Asses”).

In the 1920s black artists were recorded for the first time in history and black music was embraced by both black and white audiences.

Mamie Smith recorded “Crazy Blues” on August 10th, 1920.  The record sold over 75,000 copies in its first month – a staggering amount at the time considering the price of both the record and the phonograph machine needed to play it.

Bessie Smith saved Columbia Records from bankruptcy with sales from her records.  “There’s two kinds of people in this town, bootleggers and customers.” While “Empress of the Blues,” Bessie Smith was blazing musical trails across the north, south and midwest, in Rose City “Prohibition Rose” reigned Queen over bootlegging activities in Stumptown.  Shanghai City was infamous during prohibition times for its wild night life, underground city, and smuggling: booze, dope, gold and sometimes people. During Prohibition being “wet” in Portland had nothing to do with the rain.

I don’t know how many Portlanders listened to blues and jazz in the 1920s – probably not many given the popularity of the Ku Klux Klan in the early part of the decade.  But today in Portland, we have one of the biggest blues communities in the country and I’m honored to be part of it.

There’s a tattoo on my right arm of Ma Rainey, Bessie Smith, Billie Holiday – some of my favorite Prohibition era blues artists. My grandmother’s favorite song was “Pennies from Heaven” recorded by Billie Holiday, and my sisters and I sang it to her as she died. If there is a heaven, I hope my grandmother is there dancing the Charleston, listening to Billie, singing with Alberta and joking with Ma Rainey (they had a lot in common).

Karen Lovely is a CBA member and 2009 “Journey to Memphis” Winner. She was the 2nd Place Band Winner at the 2010 International Blues Challenge representing the Cascade Blues Association.  She has won 7 Muddy Awards including “Performance of the Year” and “Best Female Vocalist”.  Her sophomore release “Still the Rain” was nominated for (3) Blues Music Awards including “Best Contemporary Album”, “Best Contemporary Blues Female Artist” and “Best Song”.  She has just released a new album of Prohibition era blues called “PROHIBITION” and will be performing songs from the new release with her Prohibition Orchestra at the Safeway Waterfront Blues Festival on July 4th. For more information visit her website at

An annual tradition in Portland every summer is a series of free concerts held in neighborhood parks throughout the city. Here is a list of several events taking place in July and August featuring acts that will appeal to blues lovers. All shows are at 6:30 pm, except for those held in the Washington Park Rose Garden Amphitheater which begin at 6:00 pm. For park locations, visit

July 9 – Karen Lovely – Dawson Park

July 15 – The Strange Tones – Mt Tabor Park

July 16 – Linda Hornbuckle Band – Willamette Park

July 28 – Robert Moore & The Wildcats – Sellwood Riverfront Park

August 5 – Norman Sylvester Band – Kenton Park

August 11 – Ural Thomas & The Pain – Washington Park Rose Garden Amphitheater

August 12 – Jerry Joseph & The Jack Mormons with Ashleigh Flynn – Washington Park Rose Garden Amphitheater

August 20 – The David Gerald Band (from Detroit) – Parklane Park

August 28 – Woodbrain – Berrydale Park

Time to pack up the blanket, pull out the camp chair, put on your parka and get ready to attend our 11th season of summer music in the park. Relax next to a bon fire while you sip wine, eat some food from local eateries and listen to live music.

All concerts are at our park unless noted otherwise. Cover charge of $7 per person or $5 per person for 4 or more person carloads unless noted otherwise. Food & beverages, including our awesome wines, are available for purchase at each event. Dress casually & bring a jacket as this is an outdoor event. No outside food or beverage of any kind allowed on premises! No children, dogs or ice chests please!

Saturday, June 21: Lloyd Jones
7:00-10:00pm / $10/person or $8/person 4+ in car

Saturday, June 28: Ty Curtis Band
7:00-10:00pm / $10/person or $8/person 4+ in one car

Saturday, July 5: Jake Blair

Saturday, July 12: Blue Evolution

Saturday, July 19: Tommy Hogan Band

Saturday, July 26: Ellen Whyte with Garry Meziere & Orvil Ivie
2:00-10:00pm / $10/person

Friday, August 1: Ty Curtis Band
7:00pm – 10:00pm / $10/person or $8/person 4+ in one car

Saturday, August 2: The Boomers

Friday, August 8: Ben Rice Band
7:00pm – 10:00pm

Saturday, August 9: Hank Shreve Band

**Friday, August 15: Brothers, Bror
7:00pm – 10:00pm @ Skyroom Yurt

**Sat, August 16: Ellen Whyte Trio
7:00-10:00pm @ Skyroom Yurt / *$10/person

Saturday, August 23: Kevin Selfe & Tornadoes

**Friday, Aug. 29:Jake Blair/Melody Guy
7:00pm – 10:00pm @ Skyroom Yurt

Saturday, August 30: Billy D & the Hoodoos
7:00pm – 10:00pm

Saturday, September 6: Ty Curtis Band
7:00-10:00pm / *$10/person or $8/person 4+ in one car)

**SHOWS will be held on the yurt deck, Bella Vista Skyroom, located at the top of the vineyard. Limited to the first 100 people. Entrance and parking will be at the upper gate and parking areas.

General Information
Advance ticket purchase highly recommended, especially for Ty Curtis and yurt shows. Call 503-316-3911 to purchase tickets. Tickets can be mailed or you can schedule a time to pick up at the winery.  All table reservations (seating 6-8 persons) to be paid for in advance of the show.  No minors or dogs allowed. ID required.  All wines available in the tasting room are sold by the glass or bottle at the music events, as well as Bud/Corona/or premier beers, bottled water and sodas.  At each music event, food is available at a very reasonable rate from different vendors. We encourage you to support and try the delicious food prepared by various local vendors.  No beverages or food may be brought in the vineyard/park (no ice chests).  Tables for six or eight can be reserved in advance. Smaller groups will share tables or utilize individual seating.  There is plenty of free parking on site. For wine purchased on site, we accept Cash, Checks, Visa or Mastercard. If purchasing wine online, we accept

The Oregon Zoo, 4001 SW Canyon Road, has long held their popular summer concert series featuring a variety of musical choices. This July, the Zoo will offer two shows that may draw notice from blues audiences. Both shows are slated for 7:00 pm start times, are open to all ages, and have tickets available through ranging from $25.00 – $45.00.

Carolina Chocolate Drops – July 12th
The Grammy winning band, the Carolina Chocolate Drops will be playing at the Oregon Zoo on Saturday, July 12th. Featuring the multi-instrumental quarter of Rhiannon Giddes, Hubby Jenkins, Malcolm Parson and Rowan Corbett, the group has been described by Rolling Stone magazine as “Dirt-Floor Dance Electricity.” Their music works in the stylings of early American formats such as string-band, jug-band, early jazz and drum & fife outfits. Or as The Guardian states, “An appealing grab-bag of antique country, blues, jug-band hits and gospel hollers.” For anybody who loves the sound of authentic roots music, this is a must see show. Opening the night will be Portland indie rocker Sallie Ford.

Charles Bradley & His Extraordinaires – Friday, July 25th
Vocalist Charles Bradley has been compared to the legendary Otis Redding with his soulful singing. A one-time James Brown impersonator, Bradley has been conquering stages around the country with appearances at events like SXSW, Bonnaroo, Newport folk Festival and Austin City Limits. His latest release, 2013’s Victim Of Love received substantive airplay and acclaim. Seattle’s Pickwick opens.

ramblings201306BNGreg Johnson / CBA President

The City of Portland shed a collective tear on Tuesday, May 27th when the word spread that one of our most beloved musicians, pianist Janice Scroggins, had moved on to Heaven’s gate after suffering a heart attack. Things just seemed to come to a sudden halt within the music community in disbelief. Janice Scroggins? How can this be? Her playing had touched us all. It did not matter what genre of music you preferred, she had graced her magical presence on it all. Her passing has left a tremendous void that can never be replaced and the early weeks of June found us all paying tribute to the legacy she had left us. Though she may have seemed so quiet sitting behind her keys on stage, it was her playing that was the glue that bound every performance she was a part of. She had a natural ease that came from years of practice beginning when she was still yet a toddler, begging to be placed on the piano bench. She was determined to be the best. And she was. Local musicians from the time word spread that she had passed began dedicating their shows to her. Everybody came out, musicians and fans alike to share their sorrow. Her memorial at Vancouver Avenue 1st Baptist Church was attended by a standing room only crowd that the Fire Marshall had to request the service find room to keep the aisles clear. That hours long service was an emotional gathering with memories, tears and joy for the gift that she had brought us. It was followed the next Monday with a tribute concert that sold out quickly to help her family make ends meet and had so many artists from the world of jazz, blues, gospel, funk and African rhythms that each was only allowed to perform one song. And still it was not enough time to feature all those who wished to be there. If everyone who wanted to be a part of the event had been permitted to take the stage that night, it would have lasted days. Janice Scroggins was the ultimate artist that everybody wanted to work with. She had that rare quality that made everybody sound better. You never had to question what she was doing, even if she had not rehearsed with the band, it just came across perfectly the first time. Every time. Inducted into the Cascade Blues Association’s Hall of Fame and the Oregon Music Hall of Fame, she was nominated for a Grammy for her recording of Scott Joplin rags. She knew that she was talented. But she did not come across as a prima donna. Her faith, family and music came first. That was the same story that was said over and over from everybody who paid her tribute. Stories were told how she would come into a studio to record and if she heard something that she felt would improve the music, she would just offer her thoughts and give an example of how she felt it would sound better. And it always was. She could do it the first time from the top of her head leaving everybody in awe, leaving no questions as to whether it was right or not. Janice Scroggins did not request or seek praise. Education and the continuation of music was what she sought most, especially with younger musicians looking to learn. It is evident in her daughters Arietta and Nafisaria, and the many others she help guide to the musical world she loved. She worked with many of the best in the city and beyond. And she made them all better yet. We were all blessed for having Janice amongst us. And in her music and the legacy of those she touched it will live on and she will forever be loved by those who knew her and had the pleasure of hearing her piano. Thank you Janice Scroggins for making all of our lives richer and more enjoyable with your presence.

Reverend Peytons Big Damn Band - photo by Birch MillerRoaring out of the southern Indiana foothills comes Reverend Peyton’s Big Damn Band playing a brand of Americana and Blues that stands alone – Delta blues and hillbilly fervor combine with musical acuity sharp as razor wire – best know, this trio is a force to be reckoned with. The growl of a good truck engine, the fiercest passion for his country home and family and an uncanny ability to breathe new life into old forms of music give them a pedigree many Americana acts would kill for and an ironclad work ethic keeps them on the road 250 dates a year, playing for the people with hurricane force.

The Rev. J. Peyton, his wife Breezy and Ben “Bird Dog” Bussell are known for their incendiary shows and celebrating their most recent release, Between The Ditches, they’ll be heading to Portland with just the right place to put forth their music at Dante’s on Saturday, July 26th. Tickets are $10.00 and available in advance at Dante’s is located at 350 W Burnside St. Showtime is 8:00 pm. 21 and over only.

Shoe Shoppin’ Woman
Blue BeetRichard Ray Farrell CD cover

There are a number of musicians that have spent a lifetime playing their blues that seem to be overlooked by the mass market. Alas, that is the life of a musician after all. Not everybody is recognized for their contributions and it is the luck of the draw when somebody does break out on the big time. To me, Richard Ray Farrell is one that is sorely under recognized. With an armful of recordings that have garnered substantial critical acclaim and working alongside many highly renowned players, he just seems to be that one step from becoming one of those artists everybody knows and loves.

Based nowadays between Pennsylvania and Spain, Farrell spent a good many years busking the streets of Europe. He gained a bit of notoriety on that side of the Atlantic, working with a Spanish gypsy band and being a choice touring member of acts like Big Jack Johnson, Lazy Lester, RL Burnside, Louisiana Red and Frank Frost when those artists crossed the ocean. He also paired up with former Mothers of Invention drummer Jimmy Carl Black leading their own band. It does not matter what approach he takes in the blues, he continuously releases stellar material, whether it is a rocking direction as with Spanish guitar great Raimundo Amador on the album Camino de Sanlucar, or teaming with harp players like Steve Guyger or Marco Pandolfi. Acoustic, electric, slide guitar, harmonica, Farrell can handle them all and is an exceptional vocalist and songwriter as well.

His last recording, I Sing The Body Electric, found a good deal of airplay on radio stations across the United States and Europe. It was a nice mix of various blues feelings in both acoustic and electric formats. His latest, Shoe Shoppin’ Woman, also follows that direction and is yet another outstanding release.

The disc opens with the title track, telling the humorous tale of a man whose lady is a collector of shoes who goes overboard, having to have the right shoes for every occasion even if worn only once. She’s got more shoes than sense Farrell exclaims. And he doesn’t have the money to keep up with her habit.

There is a lot to enjoy on Shoe Shoppin’ Woman. Great guitar and harmonica interplay on “Just Like Sonny Liston.” A slow, burning blues on “Johnnie’s In Jail” with Farrell sizzling out guitar lines. The tale of long distance romances that just never work as he sings about being “Stuck In Philly” while his girl’s in Tennessee. Great instrumentals again showcasing his guitar playing on “Road Trippin’” and “Shake It!” and on “She’s My Girl” he just has to shout about her he is so happy and so much in love.

I have to note the great selections of the three cover tracks he includes on the album. The guitar phrasing on “Blue Shadows Falling” is piercing and tasteful. He tears it up on slide on Elmore James’ “Wild About You Baby.” But for me, it is the inclusion of Snooks Eaglin’s “If I Could” that really makes this a special album. Those Imperial years for Eaglin produced some of his best work, but sadly not too much of it is covered these days. Farrell is spot on with the song’s delivery, capturing that easy going New Orleans R&B feel that Eaglin mastered at that time.

Richard Ray Farrell has created yet another outstanding album with Shoe Shoppin’ Woman. If you have never given his music a listen before, pick it up. You just may be compelled to explore more of this superb bluesman.

Total Time: 40:41

Shoe Shoppin’ Woman / Stuck In Philly / Just Like Sonny Liston / Blue Shadows Falling / Road Trippin’ / If I Could / Wild About You Baby / Johnnie’s In Jail / Shake It! / Stir Crazy / She’s My Girl

Matt Schofield - photo by Greg JohnsonConsidered one of the greatest modern blues guitarists from England today, Matt Schofield has collected numerous awards for his recordings and performances in his home country. With a style that can be compared to contemporary guitarists like Robben Ford and Buddy Guy, Schofield has the prowess to command a stage and draw guitar enthusiasts to watch his playing closely. With each new tour of the United States he builds his fan base even more and with good cause as the accolades he has received are well founded as demonstrated on his latest recording Far As I Can See.

Schofield started his United States touring with a performance in Portland just a few years ago. The small crowd on hand that night have been making a point to return every time he comes back to town and the audiences have been growing larger with each successive appearance. Matt Schofield brings back his outstanding guitar showcase to Portland on Friday, July 25th to the Star Theater, 13 NW 6th Avenue. Tickets are available in advance through at $22.50. This is a 21 & over event, showtime is 9:00 pm.