Entries by Greg Johnson


Nico Wind Cordova Blends her Native Roots with her Blues Music

02 IMG_1742By Laurie Morrisey

Nico Wind Cordova is a Native American who honors her heritage through her music. “I have very thick Native American roots in Montana and I am considered a song carrier among my tribe. I also sing traditional and contemporary native songs.”

In addition to native music, Nico describes her music as founded in blues, folk, jazz, soul, funk, and rock–not necessarily in that order. “Today I would be considered Indy blues or adult contemporary. I’m pretty diverse since I worked in top 40 a lot. My original music could play alongside with anyone from Bonnie Raitt to …

Spirit Mountain Casino Welcomes Valerie June

Spirit Mountain Casino is proud to offer inspiring live entertainment, top-notch talent, and an unbeatable venue to experience it all! This summer, join us in welcoming Valerie June, the newest addition to the Songbook Series as she the takes the stage on August 29th.

Valerie June, the maker of ‘Organic Roots Moonshine Music,’ produces a rich sound that redefines stereotypical music genres. Her soulful voice merges the blues with gospel and folk, while her instrumentals are an experimental blend of Appalachian, country, and bluegrass. With a career beginning in Memphis, Tennessee, and has since created music that has garnered the …

Michigan Bluesman David Gerald Coming to Oregon

David Gerald grew up in Detroit, the son of Mississippi transplants who left the South to escape segregation and racial discrimination. Living near a neighbor who played guitar, David was given parts from scrap guitars that he would piece together in what he described as “Frankenstein Guitars.” With these makeshift instruments and a new-found love for the blues via artists like Albert King, ZZ Hill, BB King and Stevie Ray Vaughan, it led him to begin writing his own original blues material and working at performing. Now nearly thirty years later, David Gerald is considered one of Michigan’s most entertaining …

Three Opportunities To See The 44s in Northern Oregon

Late August is perfect chance to catch up with one of the area’s most favorite touring blues bands, The 44s. They will be heading up from Southern California to perform three consecutive nights over August 28th thru the 30th.

The 44’s are a Los Angeles-based band who play blues-roots-rock music and are definitely one of the brightest rising stars on the American blues roots scene. Make no mistake about it. The raw rough and tough sounds generated by these four expert musicians during live performances and on their recordings demands to be heard by Blues music fans …

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Best Self Produced CD Entries Now Being Accepted

If you would like to have your CD considered by the Cascade Blues Association for submission in The Blues Foundation’s Best Self Produced CD competition, please send your disc to BSPCD c/o Cascade Blues Association, PO Box 14493, Portland, Oregon 97293. You may also turn your submission in at the August, September or October Cascade Blues Association General Membership Meetings. No discs will be accepted later than October 1st.

All discs submitted must have been released after November 1, 2013. A committee set up by the Cascade Blues Association’s Board of Directors will listen to each submission and …

David Vest

Roadhouse Revelation

Cordova Bay Records


David Vest CD coverWith every left jab you better expect a right punch. And Vest counter-punches excellently with Roadhouse Revelation, the follow-up to his Maple Blues Award nominated East Meets Vest CD. Once again he has reunited that successful grouping from the previous release, with Fathead’s Teddy Leonard hitting the strings on his guitar precisely as the song necessitates, while Downchild’s rhythm section of bassist Gary Kendall and drum man Mike Fitzpatrick deliver the groove. Together they’re known as The Willing Victims.

Vest also works out his typical piano plan. Work all of the keys, leaving no …

Mary Flower

Mary Flower CD cover

When My Bluebird Sings

Bluesette Records

When you talk with Mary Flower, you have that first impression that she is a kindly, sweet, mild-mannered person who would never lead you astray by what she tells you. She recently came up to me and handed me a copy of her latest CD, When My Bluebird Sings, and told me that it was unlike anything she had ever done before. A completely new direction for her.

“You’re going to hate it,” she said. “It’s a reggae album.”

“Sounds interesting Mary,” I told her, thinking where is she going here, so tongue in …

Leo Welch

Leo Welch CD coverSabougla Voices

Big Legal Mess Records

Leo Welch is a former bluesman, who now devotes his music to gospel. Mississippi hill country style. Never ashamed of his blues background, Welch told writer Wiley Prewitt that he looks at the blues as not an evil art form, rather an extension of one’s life and experiences. Those who enjoy the blues music of this region of Mississippi will find themselves nodding their heads and dancing along with Welch here. Regardless of what or who he may be singing about. Imagine if RL Burnside or Junior Kimbrough sang about praise to the Lord …

The Birk To Host Guitarist Bill Magee’s Only Oregon Appearance

Bill Magee - promo photoReferring to himself as “The Lowdown Dirty Blues Guitarist,” Bill Magee (then going by the name Willie) met a young guitarist by the name of Jimmy James. The two became good friends and formed the band Jimmy James and The Flames. James eventually moved to England, where he became better known as Jimi Hendrix, while Magee continued the original band under the name the Kansas City Playboys and toured Europe himself. The rest is history.

After a brief hiatus, Bill Magee began to feel the pull of the blues once again and came out of retirement. Now working out of …

Rising Young Blues Star Benjamin Booker To Play Free Show At The Doug Fir

The Doug Fir Lounge presents a free patio show on Saturday, August 16th, starting at 6:00 pm, featuring New Orleans-based singer/songwriter Benjamin Booker. Booker’s sound has grown out of his old love of hardcore bands and his new life in the Big Easy. Embracing both Black Flag and the blues, he creates music with a fresh take on traditionally heavy genres. Audiences will be witness to a sound that’s urgent, emotional, and ball -breaking. It’s gritty like late 60s punk Detroit, but in the end, this is a young artist who’s a true blues man, whom The Independent newspaper has …