4onthefloor - press photoThe 4onthefloor deliver stompin’ blues with an alarming intensity. 4onthefloor was born in the bottom of a bourbon bottle with the idea that it’s effing time to have some fun and make amazing music. Audiences immediately take to the infectious driving feel of not one, but four bass drums pulsing to the beat of the songs. The music is inspired by the gutsy stomp of the Delta Blues and the hoe-downs from America’s past and present. While 4onthefloor prides themselves on their original songs, they also love putting their signature stomp on covers from the likes of Wilco to Tom Jones. Their live show is known for keeping packed crowds intensely involved for an entire show with its call-and-response choruses and meaty guitar riffs. This makes 4onthefloor one of the most entertaining bands on the Midwest music scene today, and the world tomorrow.

In support of their third recording, All In, the band embarks on a West Coast tour that will be steaming through the Portland area on Tuesday, February 2, at Mississippi Studos, 3939 N Mississippi Avenue. This 9:00 pm show will be for those 21 & over only, with tickets available through TicketFly.com for $12.00 (advance and day of show).

Celebrate Mark Hummel’s twenty-fifth anniversary of presenting sensational Blues Harmonica Blowouts when he returns to The Aladdin Theater on Wednesday, February 3 with what just may be one of his best line-ups ever. Joining the Blues Music Award winning Hummel will be amazing harp masters Curtis Salgado, Lazy Lester, Jason Ricci, Aki Kumar, and Big Jon Atkinson. Tremendous blowers like these need to be backed up with a heavy-hitting band, too. So Hummel has gathered guitarists Anson Funderburgh and Little Charlie Baty and rhythm section RW Grigsby (bass) and Wes Starr (drums). This band is worth the admission alone, but throw in the harmonica stars and you have a showcase you shouldn’t miss!

The Aladdin Theater is located at 3017 SE Milwaukie Avenue. Tickets are $32.50 advance and $35.00 day of show, available at The Aladdin box office or through TicketFly.com. Show time is 8:00 pm and minors under 21 are welcome with a parent or legal guardian.

Fiona Boyes - press photo by Brandy Kayzakian-RoweAustralian blues artist and former Portland resident Fiona Boyes returns for a couple weeks to her second home for a long awaited visit that will include multiple shows and various band lineups. A five-time Blues Music Award nominee (including being up for the Koko Taylor Award for traditional female artist this year), the 2003 International Blues Challenge solo/duo winner and on the heels of a new recording, Box & Dice that is receiving rave reviews from around the world, she is surely going to be welcomed back with big crowds every night. Touted as a master at both acoustic and electric guitars, she is often compared with the talents of Memphis Minnie, and deservedly so.

Fiona Boyes first Portland area performance during her visit will take place on Friday, February 5 at Vie de Boheme (1530 SE 7th Ave.) for a 9:00 pm show with a band that will include Dave Kahl on bass, Lloyd Jones on guitar and Carlton Jackson on drums. Admission is $10.00. On Wednesday 10, Fiona will be the guest artist with Soul Cookin’ at Blackwell’s.  On Sunday 14, she will be joined by Jimi Bott on drums, Mitch Kashmar on harmonica and Dave Kahl on bass at Billy Blues (7115 NE Hazel Dell Ave., Vancouver, WA) from 7:00 – 10:00 pm. Then on Wednesday 17, Fiona will return to Blackwell’s where she will be filling in for Lloyd Jones to lead Soul Cookin’ for the night.

That’s four great chances to catch up with Fiona Boyes during her visit, but keep your eyes and ears open as there may be more yet to come!

When guitarist Jeff Jensen moved from Portland to Memphis he really had no clue what he would find there. Teaming up with harmonica player Brandon Santini shortly after his arrival was the right move at the time as it propelled his career into a steady path to success. After playing with Santini for a couple years, Jensen decided it was time to reform his band and to look at creating solo work again. Now, following two highly successful recordings, with his latest, Morose Elephant, receiving airplay on over 400 radio stations, a tour that took him to ten countries and 27 states, and two nominations for the Blues Blast Sean Costello Rising Star Award, Jensen’s move back East was surely the right one.

Jeff Jensen will be returning to Portland for a night at Duff’s Garage, 2530 NE 82nd Avenue on Friday, February 12 for a 9:00 pm show. Tickets are $10.00 and Cascade Blues Association members can receive a $1.00 discount at the door with their current membership card. Come out and welcome Jeff back to town, even if it is only for one night.

This Valentine’s Day, consider the Trails End Saloon as your holiday destination for an incredible evening with the NW Women Rhythm & Blues Valentine’s Day Extravaganza. This celebration includes many of Portland’s finest vocalists and musicians, featuring an all-star collection of talent with Sonny Hess, Lisa Mann, Vicki Stevens, Rae Gordon, Lady True Blue, Saeeda Wright, and Sarah Clarke. If this amazing group of ladies is not enough, they’re throwing into the mix drummer and vocalist Brian Foxworth. Definitely a winning combination for what will certainly be a highly enjoyable night.

It all happens on Sunday, February 14 starting at 6:00 pm at the Trails End Saloon, 1320 Main Street, Oregon City. Admission is only $12.00, but make your reservations now at 503-656-3031 as this is one event expected to fill the house!

Two of Portland’s hottest rising blues stars have been tag-teaming their way across the country in a number of shows to the excitement of many new fans. So it’s only fitting that they bring that excitement home to give their local fans a little taste.

Lisa Mann Blues Music Awards - photo by Greg JohnsonBlues Music Award winner and the recipient of the Blues Blast Sean Costello Rising Star Award Lisa Mann is paired with two-time International Blues Challenge finalist and the St Blues Guitar Award winner for best guitarist in the 2015 IBC solo/duo competition Ben Rice. That’s a killer combination and between the two of them would need a Ben Rice - photo by Scott Allenwheelbarrow to lug all of the Cascade Blues Association Muddy Awards between them. Backing the two will be Lisa’s Really Good Band Michael Ballash on drums, Jason “JT” Thomas on guitar and Brian Harris on keys, with Dave Melyan handling a bit of drums as well. This will be a night filled with blues and soulful grooves.

Lisa Mann and Ben Rice will be making it all happen at Jimmy Mak’s, 221 NW 10th Avenue, on Friday, Fenruary 12 at 8:00 pm. Tickets will be $12.00 at the door and Cascade Blues Association members will receive a $2.00 discount when showing their current membership card for this co-sponsored event.

TommyCastro - press photo by Lewis MacDonaldOne of the West Coast’s most beloved bluesmen, Tommy Castro, has garnered a great deal of acclaim over his four decade career. With fourteen albums and numerous Blues Music Awards nominations and wins, including the coveted Band of the Year and BB King Entertainer of the Year, he has definitely sealed his name in blues history. His shows are exciting, and feature a crack outfit that has worked with him for a number of years, including bassist Randy McDonald, keyboardist Michael Emerson and drummer Bowen Brown making up The Painkillers. His latest album, Method To My Madness, continues his impressive string of high caliber recordings.

Tommy Castro & The Painkillers will return to Portland for a show at the Alberta Rose Theatre, 3000 NE Alberta Street, on Thursday, February 18 at 8:00 pm.  This show is open to all ages, with minors okay when accompanied by a parent or guardian. Tickets are $20.00 in advance through the venue’s website, AlbertaRoseTheatre.com or $25.00 at the door day of show.

It wasn’t too long ago that Ward Stroud helmed a jam at the Trails End Saloon every Sunday night. But not too long ago his career focus turned more towards his work in hair design and as an artist. That doesn’t mean that he won’t show up at a venue every now and then and throw down some feisty guitar licks, a little Native American flute, and maybe even a bit of the didjerido, too. Well, Ward will be coming out for a special occasion back at the Trails End for a night of music to help raise needed funds to defray medical expenses he has occurred during a recent health issue — and he’ll be bringing along some old friends to help out.

It’ll all take place on Friday, February 19 at 8:00 pm. Joining Ward will be his jam band mates Vince Adame, Gregg Earl, and Lynn Axtel. It won’t stop there as the night will feature cameo appearances by friends like Ellen Whyte, Garry Meziere, Rae Gordon, and there’s even a rumor going around that The Bar Pilots just may show up as well. And there may be other surprise luminaries dropping by, too.

Aside from the music and dancing, there will also be a raffle, including a Ward Stoud original painting, along with other super prizes. There’s going to be a lot of fun going on as we’re helping out a “big, big heart!” Playing the blues …. And maybe some didjeridos!

The Trails End Saloon is located at 1320 Main Street in Oregon City. Suggested donation is $10.00.

Ward Stroud would like to say “Thanks to everyone at the Trails End and his extended family that is the musical community in the Northwest. A big shout out to the talent showing up and doing what they do. And mostly to the good souls that come out to listen. Without you our ol’ lives would be very small indeed.”

Ayron Jones and The Way - press photoSeattle guitarist Ayron Jones’ playing style has often been compared to that of Jimi Hendrix and Stevie Ray Vaughan with perhaps with a hint of Nirvana and a touch of hip-hop. In other words, it’s old school and modern combined with an edge of attitude. His blues-rock guitar is filled with raw energy as he leads his three-piece outfit The Way and has been drawing a lot of attention throughout the Northwest and beyond, opening shows for artists like BB King, Robert Cray and Robin Trower, to being a feature performer at festivals like Sasquatch, Bumbershoot, and the Waterfront Blues Festival.

On Friday, February 19, Atron Jones & The Way will be performing in a twin-billed performance at The Star Theater with Portland soul band Dirty Revival. This is a 21 & over only concert, with show time beginning at 9:00. Tickets are $12.00 and available through TicketWeb.com. The Star Theater is located at 13 NW 6th Avenue.

The Cascade Blues Association presents its fourteenth annual Valentine’s Day celebration with the Red, White, & Blues Dance (formerly the Sweethearts Dance). This year’s event will be happening at the Milwaukie Elks Lodge 13121 SE McLoughlin Blvd, Portland, OR 97222, on Sunday, February 14, at 5:00 pm (doors open at 4PM).

We will have entertainment from three terrific acts this year.  Opening the night will be a performance from Robbie Laws, one of the most beloved guitarists in the Portland area. He is the recipient of 21 Muddy Awards, including nine for best electric guitar player. Throughout his tenure on the blues scene he has performed alongside virtually every local artist as well as legends such as Ronnie Earl, Albert Collins, and Kenny Neal. As a true guitar master — if it has strings, Robbie can play it!

The next act performing is Sister Mercy.   Sister Mercy has been taking the city’s blues community by storm over the past year. With a huge CD release party at The Star Theater, a Muddy nomination for best new act, and winning the CBA’s Journey To Memphis competition while representing our region at the Memphis International Blues Challenge, this band is showing true merit as an act to keep an eye on!

Is there any one artist more on fire the past few years in Portland than Ben Rice? Closing the dance is a two-time recipient of the “Curtis Salgado” Muddy Award for male vocalist of the year. Ben opened for BB King’s final appearance in Oregon and has lately been performing with Lisa Mann and Karen Lovely at various venues around the country. Ben competed in the International Blues Challenge three times, making the finals twice, where he won the St Blues Guitar Award for most promising guitarist in the solo/duo category this past year.

Milwaukie Elks Lodge will have a variety of yummy menu options of food available as well as drinks for great prices.

We will also be having a raffle for amazing CD’s and a silent auction with lots of great items.

Admission for the Red & White Blues Dance is only $10.00 person, or come as a couple and get a bargain rate of $15.00 for the two of you.  Are you an Elks members? You’ll get $2.00 off of the admission fee. The Milwaukie Elks Lodge is located at 13121 SE McLoughlin Blvd, Portland. Hope to see you there.