Melody Ballroom, 615 SE Alder St., Portland
Wednesday, June 1, 7:00 pm
Members always Free – Non-members $3.00
Opening acoustic set – Froggy
Second electric set – JT Wise Band

Here comes the summer, and we’re all ready for lots of great music playing around town — both indoors and outside. There are always many choices in Portland when it comes to music and the blues are always right out there in front. The best way to kick off every month has long been the Cascade Blues Association’s monthly membership meeting. That has been true going on thirty years and we have no thoughts of letting up on that.

Froggy - photo by Greg JohnsonThis month we’re going to be bringing yet another out of town artist to the meeting: William “Froggy” Hyland. “Froggy” is a singer/songwriter and multi-instrumentalist from Albany, working on his fourth studio CD. He is the host of one of the longest running blues jams in Oregon and an innovative tour de force.

He recently took part in Bill Rhoades’ Harmonica Summit and is a past International Blues Challenge semi-finalist and runner-up of the Kings of Beale Street competition with the Vicki Stevens Band in Memphis. Froggy will also be taking part again in this year’s Journey To Memphis competition again and you’ll be able to witness a preview of his set at this month’s meeting.

It’ll be “Lappie Night” for “Lonesome Solo Froggy” at the meeting as he will be utilizing his steel guitar. And don’t be surprised if some of the friends from the Harmonica Summit drop by to pair up with Froggy. And he states, “It’ll never be just like this again!”

JT Wise Band - press photoThe second set of the night will feature another of this year’s Journey To Memphis contestants, the JT Wise Band. JT Wise is an electric guitarist and songwriter from Portland, Oregon with a  distinctive style and tone creating a signature sound. His musical influences read like a Clapton Crossroads Festival with the full spectrum of guitar from Clapton, Billy Gibbons, Vince Gill, Robben Ford, and a touch of Garcia and Betts.

JT along with his wife and the band’s bassist Margaret are the principle songwriters and their music is anchored in the blues, but also blend rock and Americana styles. The current line up has been together for three years, filled out with long-time veteran musicians Jim Stein on guitar and and Ken Woodside on drums. Together the band plays good time music and enjoy singing and harmonizing. They are tight, rhythmic and adventuresome and have been known to stretch out on a song in the tradition of the great jam bands taking the song where ever it may lead.

Remember, if you’re looking to volunteer at the Waterfront Blues Festival for either the Cascade Blues Association merchandise booth or the stage access for the Oregon Food Bank, this will be your last chance at a meeting before the festival to sign up.

Aside from the Waterfront, we’ll pass on information about other great happenings going on this month and will hold our popular free ticket drawings and the winner take all multi-CD package drawing, too. We’ll see you there!

Melody Ballroom, 615 SE Alder St., Portland
Wednesday, May 4, 7:00 pm
Members always Free – Non-members $3.00
Opening Acoustic Set – Adam Scramstad & Jerry Zybach
Second Electric Set – Thomas T. & The Blue Chips

The Cascade Blues Association always tries to bring you the best blues our region has to offer at our monthly membership meetings. It can be old friends or newer acts deserving our attention. But it is always going to be top notch blues music. This month, we’re stretching beyond the city limits of Portland and reaching to a little further into Oregon to bring you a taste of what lies outside. And since our part of the country has an enormous depth of talent when it comes to the blues, it’ll be yet another exciting night to start the musical month out right.

Jerry Zybach and Adam Scramstad - press photoNo strangers to performing in Portland are two good friends of the CBA traveling from down the Willamette River a bit to play for us this month. Adam Scramstad and Jerry Zybach are without doubt extraordinary guitarists working either as solo musicians or within bands, on acoustic or electric guitars, and are both known throughout the Northwest and abroad.

Adam Scramstad hails from the Corvallis area and is known for his exceptional finger-style guitar. He can often be found here in the Portland area working alongside his mentor Terry Robb as part of the Terry Robb Trio.

Jerry Zybach lives in Eugene, and having spent time on the road with the legendary Honeyboy Edwards, he is now currently the guitarist and band leader for the Joanne Broh Band. Jerry can also be heard every Friday morning broadcasting from the KRVM studios as host of Breakfast with the Blues (though broadcasting out of Eugene, the station is available online).

For this project, Adam and Jerry are working together as an acoustic dip, focusing on the style and feel of 1930’s era Delta Blues, while sharing an interpretation of the genre’s history through their playing.

The second set of the meeting will bring for the first time at a CBA meeting Thomas T. and The Blue Chips. Thomas T. started playing the blues in Chicago where he got to see blues legends like Muddy Waters,Willie Dixon and Lightnin’ Hopkins. After moving to Oregon in 1991 he has been keeping the blues alive in various bands, finally getting together some of Central Oregon’s finest blues musicians.

Thomas T and The Blue Chips - press photoThe band started to come together after bassist and lead vocalist, Thomas T (Tsuneta) had left his traveling sales job and decided he wanted to form a blues band. “I had been in a cover band for 6 or 7 years with guitarist  Jeff Leslie and we both had added blues songs we liked to the set list. When I asked if he could play blues all night, he said ‘Sure!’’  They were quickly joined by Steve Beaudry , who Thomas calls “ a World Class harmonica player” who had exactly the tone and feel that fits so well with the Chicago and Texas style blues the band loves.” Joining most recently is drummer Jeff Ingraham, who has toured with and recorded several albums for Country music legend Merle Haggard.

The band have been pleasantly surprised by the warm reception in the live music scene in Bend and Central Oregon to a real blues band.  Local club gigs have steadily built since March 2015 through the year, finally culminating in appearances at the Bend Roots Fest and Fall Festival. While they couldn’t be happier with the reception, Thomas T. and The Blue Chips are looking forward to playing in Portland and on the Oregon Coast and are currently working on their debut CDfor a potential summer release.

And the band would like to add,“We are all looking forward to meeting the CBA members and playing our blues for people who know what the blues are about!”

Between sets, we’ll hold our free ticket prize drawing and let you know about what’s coming up in our area during May. And don’t forget, you can sign up at the May and June meetings to volunteer for both the CBA merchandise booth and for backstage positions at the Waterfront Blues Festival.

Remember to please respect the musicians while they are playing. If you must talk to your friends, kindly step out to the lobby/bar area of the Melody Ballroom. Thank you.

Melody Ballroom, 615 SE Alder St., Portland
Wednesday, April 6, 7:00 pm
Members always Free – Non-members $3.00
Opening Acoustic Set – Thad Beckman
Second Electric Set – Kenny Lee & The Sundowners

Hard to believe that we’re already rolling into April. Seems like just yesterday that we started the new year. Maybe it’s because of so much great blues happening in our area that the months just seem to be running into one another quickly. And, lucky for us, there’s no end to it in sight. Of course, we all know that the Cascade Blues Association is going to do its part in helping to provide at least one date every month you can count on for bringing exciting blues your way. That happens again this month in The Melody Ballroom at our General Membership Meeting where the Association always brings in the acts you love or should be aware of. And that’s not going to change in April as we have a spectacular couple of acts in line for everybody.

thadOpening the evening will be an artist that recently returned to the Portland area after a short hiatus living in Colorado. Thad Beckman is without question one of the finest acoustic guitarists around, but his career has spread far beyond just working as a solo artist. Beckman has worked for a number of years partnered with singer/songwriter Tom Russell touring throughout the country, Canada, and Europe as well as performing on television. He has also performed with a number of R&B bands including work with Bo Diddley and Earl Thomas, and has opened for such renowned artists as BB King, Albert Collins, Emmylou Harris, The Band, James Cotton, and many others. A creative songwriter himself, he has eight solo albums to his credit including his most recent, Streets Of Disaster, and an instructional book on playing guitar, as he also teaches guitar and does producing for others when not performing.

Perhaps Jim Beal of The San Antonio Express News best describes Thad Beckman when he writes that “Beckman plays an engaging blend of folk, singer-songwriter and blues music. Not everyone can pull off such a combination, but Beckman has chops, writing talent,  and a bag full of true stories which all dovetail for a cool show.”

Joining Thad Beckman for this set will be harmonica ace Kurtis Piltz. These two often work together and have a connection that is right on target every time they work as a tandem.

The second set of the meeting will see the return of a band that has not performed for us for a while and has been totally revamped kenny leeinto an even better outfit than before — Kenny Lee & The Sundowners.  Its ReverbNation biography describes Kenny Lee as “an Outlaw of Consciousness. Armed with his guitar, the simplicity of his song and the integrity of his soul, he is an outlaw runnin’ against the winds of inhumanity,  injustice and the crimes against Mother Earth and her inhabitants. True to his roots, his music captures the human condition in down home words. Kenny Lee also has a very special relationship with the lap steel. He doesn’t play the lap steel, he makes love to the music in the soul of the instrument. For those present in the magic of those moments, it is a beauty beyond description. Backing him up is the rythym section of Marcos Ferraz on Bass, Alan Wicks on Drums and Ken M (Mortellaro) on guitar. “

The band has been together in one form or another since 1992, with their most recent recording titled Outlaw which has received airplay throughout the area. When you come to a Sundowners show, you’ll hear blues standards that have been stamped with the band’s imprint, some classic rock tunes, and many original songs. You may notice a Hank Jr. sound along with some funk and a lot of Jimi Hendrix, that adds a psychedelic element to the music. There is a lot of influences behind the musicians in the band, so expect a high energy performance, great for dancing or just rockin’ out!

In between sets we’ll hold our regular free ticket drawing and alert you to the happenings in the area for the month. Don’t forget your ticket at the door when you enter for your chance to win great prizes.

Don’t forget, if you’re planning on participating in this year’s Journey To Memphis competition to earn the right to represent the CBA in Memphis at the International Blues Challenge, you must turn in your application no later than this meeting.

Special Note: Please respect the artists performing. Many of them wait for up to a year to have the chance to play for you. It is a great time to catch up with friends who you may only see once a month, but if you do want to talk, please step out to the foyer so others may enjoy the talent of the musicians playing for us. Thank you and we’ll see you at the meeting!

Melody Ballroom, 615 SE Alder St., Portland
Wednesday, March 2, 7:00 pm
Members always Free – Non-members $3.00
Opening Acoustic Set – Tim Connor
Second Electric Set – Eric “Sugar” Larsen Group

Looking at the number of events happening in March it appears that this will be a very busy month on trying to keep up with all that is going on. But as always, the best way to start the month is by coming to the Cascade Blues Association’s membership meeting. It’s a great way to hear fantastic performances by local musicians and we’ll let you know on what’s happening out there in our area when it comes to blues music you should not miss out on.

Tim ConnorOpening the month we will see the return of acoustic guitarist and songwriter Tim Connor. His incisive, emotionally telling, often witty observations on life and relationships have evoked comparisons to Lyle Lovett, Randy Newman, John Prine, and Elvis Costello, while his fingerpicked guitar playing is rooted in blues, ragtime, and country styles, blends in African influences absorbed during childhood years in Zambia, along with county, rock, soul, jazz, and Latin and Caribbean music.

“Songwriting is about telling stories,” Tim says, “and I’ve always thought of myself as a songwriter. I’m not a traditional musician really, but American songwriting is a tradition in its own right that has a symbiotic relationship with traditional folk music, going all the way back to Stephen Foster. I just want to be part of that tradition and add a few threads to the tapestry.”

Tim has released one CD titled Blues Between The Lines, with a second, Blues Period, in the works. He has performed throughout the region at farmers markets, taverns and coffee houses and folk festivals including the Northwest Folklife Festival. Tim enjoys playing his music pretty much anywhere he can find an audience.

The second set of the night will feature the Eric Sugar Larsen Group, a contemporary soul/blues band that invariably leaves every audience wanting more. Contemporary in their application yet extremely pop sensible, they weave masterfully their original music with that of the classic Chicago groove sound. For the past several years, the Eric Sugar Larsen Group has been considered one of the freshest sounds on the thriving Portland music scene.

eric sugar larsenBand leader Eric Larsen has been a part of the Portland music community since forming The Groove Authority back in 1984. With influences early on from Eric Clapton, Jeff Beck, and Freddie King, he is also the son of saxophonist Don Larsen of the legendary jazz maseter Stan Kenton’s band. Over his career Eric has traveled and performed in twenty-two countries.

Larsen is joined by the steady rhythm section of David Franklin Stump on bass and John Garcia on drums. This is a trio to be reckoned with and certain to bring a crowd to their feet heading for the dance floor.

And don’t forget to pick up your free drawing ticket when you enter the Melody for your chance to win great CDs or other great prizes. Can it get any better? Good music and good friends — the perfect way to start out every month.

Melody Ballroom, 615 SE Alder St., Portland
Wednesday, February 3, 7:00 pm
Members always Free – Non-members $3.00
Opening Acoustic Set – Diggin’ In The Well Trio
Second Electric Set – Blues Battalion

February is here, and the Cascade Blues Association has yet another outstanding showcase lined up for our members for this month’s General Membership Meeting. This is always a great way to begin your blues month and judging from the responses and the size of the crowds we have been seeing, it looks like many of you are in agreement.

For February, we have a very special opening set with a unique group of musicians you’re not going to see just every day. Three of not only the city’s finest artists, but amongst the best you’ll find anywhere on this big old planet. Calling themselves the Diggin’ In The Well Trio and they’re planning on going deep for this meeting! The group is led by one of Portland’s most beloved musicians, Lloyd Jones, on acoustic guitar and vocals. A member of the Oregon Music Hall of Fame as well as the Cascade Blues Association’s Hall of Fame and a CBA Lifetime Achievement recipient, Jones is the ultimate representation of the blues artists in our area. Always engaging and entertaining, with a smile on his face and delivering the best of shows whenever he is on stage, you know that you’re always in for a treat when Jones is on the marquee.

Deep In The Well - photo courtesy of Lloyd Jones The band’s designated hitter is regarded by many as maybe the very best blues drummer to be found, Jimi Bott. That title has definitely been earned with his many years playing with top acts like Rod Piazza & The Mighty Flyers, The Fabulous Thunderbirds, The Mannish Boys and our own local heroes Kevin Selfe & The Tornadoes. Throw into the mix his recent recognition as the drummer of the year in The Blues Foundation’s Blues Music Awards and it pretty much sums that title up effectively.

Completing the trio is a recent transplant to Portland, but certainly another musician with credentials that cannot be ignored. Mark “Shark” Schatzkamer. A master of open tunings on guitar, mandolin, resonator guitar and “slide” mandolin, he has a rich history having played with Jackson Browne, Jessie Ed Davis, Taj Mahal, John Trudell, Terry Evans, Teresa James, and even Bob Dylan. Without doubt, another welcome newcomer to our ever-growing tremendous music community.

This opening set may be one for the memories, but it certainly is not going to be the only great music happening at the meeting. The second set of the night will feature Blues Battalion. A blues, classic rock and some jazz band that has been playing throughout the Portland Metro area for quite a while.

Blues Battalion is fronted by guitarist and vocalist Fred Riedel, an award winning Blues Battalion - press photosongwriter, who was recently been given the “Best Blues Song of the Month” award twice by Akademia Music Awards out of Los Angeles. Joining Riedel is drummer Tony Leitch, harmonica man Mike Amen, bassist Tyler McDowell and keyboardist David Lee Bassett. The band also features a pair of outstanding vocalists in Leanne Cruz and Fred’s daughter Kristi Riedel. The band has been working throughout the region including gigs at The Gemini Lounge, Spinella’s Off The Wall, The Hoppy Brewery, The Gateway Elks, the Troutdale Summer Fair and were the house band for Billy Bob’s in Gresham for a while. Each of the musicians in the band have extensive backgrounds performing and together will have the Melody Ballroom jumping to some exciting music for certain!

As always, we’ll bring you up to date with the goings-on around town for the upcoming month of blues. And we’ll have our free ticket drawings and winner-take-all raffle happening, too. If you attend these meetings monthly, you already know how much fun we have with great music and good friends. If you have not been before, what’s holding you up? Come on out and join in on the good times, and you’ll soon find yourself showing up every month. See you all there!

What’s on Tap for General Membership Meeting

Melody Ballroom, 615 SE Alder St., Portland
Wednesday, January 6, 7:00 pm
Members always Free – Non-members $3.00
Opening Acoustic Set – Dave Mullany with Nayibe Rojas & Kevin Selfe
Second Electric Set – The Tablerockers

It’s a new year and we’ll be starting a whole new line-up of great blues performances for our monthly meetings, guaranteed to bring exciting good times for all in attendance. Always the best way to start each month to wet your blues appetite while hanging out with friends and fellow blues appreciators.

Opening the night will be Dave Mullany, a guitar player with roots that extend across the United States. His early days of playing Dave Mullany with Nayibe Rojas & Kevin Selfeconsisted of covering rock and blues styles in upstate New York starting in 1968, with local Woodstock musicians like Paul Butterfield and Levon Helm serving as inspirations  After moving to New York City in 1977, he had the opportunity to play with Bo Diddley for all of his NY dates and opened shows for artists like Muddy Waters, Jerry Garcia, Jorma Kaukonen, and Sonny Terry & Brownie McGee. His recording experience includes work with Rolling Stones producer Jimmy Miller, session work with Shawn Colvin, radio and TV work as well as a national film, Hells Angels Forever, that featured music from Jerry Garcia, Bo Diddley, and Willie Nelson, and he performed shows at The Palladium, Roseland Ballroom, CBGBs, The Lone Star Café, and Studio 54.

Mullany moved to Portland in 1991 and has spent the past twenty-four years honing his love of the blues. He’s played clubs and shows with local heroes Ellen Whyte, Terry Robb, Mary Flower, and Kevin Selfe and currently gigs with the Angel Bouchet Blues Band as well as performing solo. Mullany has also been teaching music for over twenty-five years with a resume that includes work alongside masters like John Renbourn, Jorma Kaukonen, Woody Mann, Mary Flower, and John Cephas.

For his CBA performance, Mullany will be joined by a couple good friends. First, an artist who needs no introduction to our members, Kevin Selfe, a Muddy Award Hall of Fame member who constantly works the Pacific Northwest and beyond. Selfe recently released his latest recording, Buy My Soul Back on the VizzTone Records label to high acclaim and he has appeared at many major festivals around the country as well as performing onstage at the Blues Music Awards in Memphis.

Also joining Mullany will be Nayibe “Geebs” Rojas. As the lead vocalist for the funky Portland band Ma Fondue, she is known for delivering high energy performances. She has also performed with Sonny Hess’ NW Women Rhythm & Blues at the Waterfront Blues Festival as well as their Annual Christmas Show last year. Geebs met Dave Mullany over 15 years ago when she enrolled in 1 of his Beginning Guitar classes and has often joined him onstage as a guest vocalist.

As our second act for the night, we will be entertained by a true Chicago style blues band, The Tablerockers. As their website declares: “this is the real thing, post-war blues of the ’40s through ’60s. No rock blues, no funk blues, no disco blues, or any other watered down or hyped up blues hybrids.” With a songlist heavy with blues standards from the likes of Muddy Waters, Howlin’ Wolf, Little Walter, Junior Wells, Magic Sam, Buddy Guy, Otis Rush, Hound Dog Taylor, T-Bone Walker, and others. We may even be treated to a few of The Tablerockers’ original songs.

The Tablerockers - press photoThe Tablerockers were formed after guitarist Harvey Brindell moved to Portland from Lincoln, Nebraska this past year. For more than twenty-five years Brindell had been performing with a variety of bands that toured throughout the Midwest and Midsouth and recorded with the Honeyboy Turner Band on a couple of albums. He has played regularly at Lincoln’s famed Zoo Bar and has many shows for touring blues acts including the likes of Magic Slim & The Teardrops, Mike Zito, JW Jones, Jimmy Thackery, Smokin’ Joe Kubek, and even Portlanders Kevin Selfe & The Tornadoes, and Mitch Kashmar.

Also featured in The Tablerockers are well-known Portland blues musicians Walter Guy on bass who has led his own popular band for a number of years, harmonica man Marty Presler who has been a part of a number of bands in Southern Oregon and is a regular part of Arthur Moore’s Harmonica Parties, and rounding out the band is Sean Scheewe, a drummer who has toured the West Coast consistently with rock and country bands and part of the spot-on rhythm section known as The Dirty Lowdown.

Two great acts set to kick off 2016 just the right way for our monthly meetings. Don’t forget to pick up your ticket for the break time drawing, and perhaps buy a ticket or a few for the multi-CD winner-take-all raffle. You know that the meetings are always a good time, so what’s keeping you away? Come on out and join your friends in a good time filled with fantastic blues!

This coming December, the Cascade Blues Association will reach its 30th anniversary. I began my role on the board of directors during the tenth anniversary celebration and have been holding the role of president for the past fourteen years. Over that time I have chaired and participated in numerous programs, with leadership behind events such as the Journey To Memphis since its inception and the Muddy Awards. I have also been the primary writer and staff photographer for the BluesNotes, spending endless hours each month in its preparation. I have also started to bring CBA merchandise to various venues and festivals this past year, something that had been done quite a bit in past years, but had fallen out of practice the past few.

Outside of the CBA I have been a strong piece of The Blues Foundation’s teams for the International Blues Challenge and the Blues Music Awards, both of which I work as part of the stage management team for these world-renowned events. During this past year I also released my first book that I co-authored with a friend from Baton Rouge titled Blues On Beale Street, Memoirs of the International Blues Challenge.

No matter what my role or where my travels may take me, I promote and talk about the blues talent in the Northwest. This has been my goal since I first became involved with the CBA board, to gain more recognition for our regional blues community and artists. It still remains my goal as does making our organization more secure and higher visibility within our local media and music audience.

Please consider me when selecting your next president of the Cascade Blues Association.

Thank you,
Greg Johnson


It’s time for the 2016 CBA Board Officer elections. I would like to continue serving as the Vice President of this great organization.  As many of you know, this is a role I have held for 4 years and have worked hard during that time to promote blues activity in the Portland area, as well as beyond.  Wherever I go I talk about our CBA activities and I promote our amazing blues community, venues, and artists.  Being your Vice President has been hard work but also very rewarding and I hope I have lived up to the membership expectations.  I continue to do the CBA Calendar monthly and solicit input monthly from talent so that our calendar can have the most up to date content. I post “what’s happening” on our Facebook page regularly, and in September of 2015 I implemented an email blast which highlights the coming month activities and links to our website.  My travels bring me to a variety of festivals around the country, as well as sailing on the Legendary Rhythm and Blues Cruise — and I always make sure to promote CBA while I am attending these events.

Please consider me for the position of Vice President for the 2016 calendar year.

Wendy Schumer


I am excited to introduce myself as a candidate for the position of Secretary for the 2016 year. I have been involved with the Cascade Blues Association for more than three years. During my time with the association I have provided many hours of service.

I have experience working with volunteer organizations serving as President, Treasurer, and Secretary for PTA, Girl Scouts, Boy Scouts, and Educational organizations. I have much education and training in the area of law, organizational structure, and education that will support my ability to provide guidance and leadership.

I look forward to providing support to the association and helping to continue to build positive relationships within the community.

Please consider me for the position of Secretary for the 2016 calendar year.

Brenda Docken

The Melody Ballroom, 615 SE Alder St., Portland
Wednesday, December 2, 7:00 pm
Members always Free – Non-members $3.00
Opening Acoustic Set – Walker T. Ryan
Second Electric Set – Rose City Kings

Walker T Ryan - press photoDecember is one of the most important times of the year for the Cascade Blues Association. Members who attend our monthly meeting, besides hearing great blues music, will be able to vote for the people they want filling the officer positions for the CBA’s board of directors. All officer positions are open, President, Vice President, Secretary, Membership Secretary, and Treasurer. Please bring your current membership card to receive a ballot. We will have an up-to-date list of members if you cannot find your card.

Aside from the voting, though, we know that you attend the monthly meetings to hear those various artists from our region you may not always have the chance to catch play the blues. And this month we have two great sets for you to enjoy.

Walker T. Ryan is a blues icon from Eugene who can recreate the sounds of the original Delta and Piedmont style bluesmen, yet brings them to his unique and original creation. Ryan is both a master slide and fingerpicker, and a true storyteller. Everything that you’d expect from a first class solo musician Walker T. Ryan is all that and more. He represented the Rainy Day Blues Society in Memphis at the International Blues Challenge this past January and continues to tour in support of his most recent recording, Living Room.

Perhaps one of the best descriptions of Ryan and his playing was offered by T.R. Kelly: “Walker never preaches. He tells stories and lets us see the truth with our own eyes. It sticks deeper that way. Walker has the soul of an Irish storyteller with a bluesman’s musical vocabulary, never failing to acknowledge and honor the African roots of the blues in his shows, while explaining the contributions of immigrants and  po’ whites, crazies and characters off all colors. Hence the fitting title ‘Underdog-American Music.’  His familiar-feeling yet inventively original songs speak of huge truths in the language of the working people, with words that fit around real  and sometimes raw feelings, not cleverly constructs from a rhyming dictionary.”

The second set of the night will bring out the newly reformed band the Rose City Kings. The band took a hiatus for a little while, but it’s back and ready to get the crowds rockin’ once again. In their original incarnation the band won a Muddy Award for best new act, released three albums, toured with Chicago blues master Jody Williams, and represented the CBA in Memphis at the International Blues Challenge. Over time they saw some changes, but never lost the energetic, driving force they presented in live performances.Rose City Kings - Facebook photo

The band consists of founder and sensational songwriter Dan “Kolvane” Berkery on guitar and vocals, joined by Tim Shaughnessy on bass, Steve Kerin on keyboards, Katy Oberg on percussion, Gary Keeney on drums and David Lipkind on harmonica. This is an exciting collection of some of the top musicians in Portland, each capable of handling the spotlight on their own, but collectively bring a moving and passionate show that will leave you wanting more.

We’ll hold our popular free ticket drawing in between sets, announce all the up-coming fun blues happenings and will also have our winner take all $1.00 raffle ticket drawing for a multi-CD package put together just for the meeting.

Join us at The Melody Ballroom this month, vote for your board officers, hear two sets of fantastic music and hook up with all your blues loving friends. Sounds like the place to be, this month and every month.

Melody Ballroom, 615 SE Alder St., Portland
Wednesday, October 7, 7:00 pm
Members always Free – Non-members $3.00
Opening Acoustic Set – Justus Reece
Second Electric Set – Martin Henry and Freedom Street Band

After such a blistering hot summer we’re starting to feel a little briskness and chill coming in the air. Fall has descended upon us, but we know we do not have to look too far to find great blues music to help warm up those nights. And as always, the monthly general membership meeting of the Cascade Blues Association is the right spot to find just that.

Justus Reece - photo by Greg JohnsonOpening the night for us in October will be a young artist who has caught our attention a few times over the past few years. At only nineteen years of age, Justus Reece has appeared onstage at happenings like the Blues For MS concerts and participated in this year’s Journey To Memphis competition at The Lehrer. And he is going to Memphis this coming January to represent the Cascade Blues Association as our first entry in the Youth Showcase that has taken place the past few years at the International Blues Challenge.

Justus is quite an accomplished guitarist. Influenced and inspired by musicians like John Fahey, Mississippi John Hurt, Charlie Hunter, Gary Clark Jr, Lionel Loueke, Doug Smith, Michael Hedges, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Jerry Garcia and Terry Robb, with who he has shared time on stage with and taken lessons from. He has been playing since he was eight years old and hopes that he can make a future with music. “The blues are my roots,” he states, “but all music is related.”

For our electric set, we feature Martin Henry and Freedom Street Band. The Martin Henry and Freedom Street Band - photo by Hocus Focusband is based out of the Portland area, comprised of a tight collection of accomplished musicians from throughout the Northwest, providing highly energized entertainment from a diverse set of songs ranging from rock, blues, country, and R&B.

Each of the band members brings years of dedication and skills in their craft. Band leader vocalist, percussionist and harmonica player Martin Henry with thirty years under his belt performing, vocalist Tracie Brown also contributes as a songwriter, dual guitarists Chad Van Dyke and Jim Presley, drummer Bill Ebert, and returning for the second straight month (she played with Drop Dead Red in September) is versatile bassist Joanne “Grandma Funk” Mead.

The Freedom Street Band is currently working on recording tracks for a demo CD at Angels Recording Studio, owned by and operated by Martin Henry as well as producing a music video. Expect to have nothing but a good time with this popular band.

And as usual, the meeting will include our member favorite free ticket drawing between sets, our multi-CD winner take all package, and we’ll inform you about events coming up in our area. Don’t miss out on the monthly meeting, you may find an act that you’re unfamiliar with that’ll turn your head in approval, and of course it’s always a great place to meet good friends. See you there!

Melody Ballroom, 615 SE Alder St., Portland
Wednesday, September 2, 7:00 pm
Members always Free – Non-members $3.00
Opening Acoustic Set – James Clem
Second Electric Set – Drop Dead Red

If you look at all the activity going on around Portland and the Northwest this coming month, you’d hardly think that the summer season is coming to an end. Great touring acts, huge special events and outdoor shows are still happening. It makes you realize just how blessed we are to live in a region so rich with musical talent that we can see so many world-class artists on pretty much a nightly basis if we desire.

The Cascade Blues Association is proud to present another sensational offering to start the month out with our General membership Meeting happening on Wednesday, September 2, with two sets of first-class blues for our enjoyment.

James Clem - press photoFor our first set we will be bringing you a musician who has released not one, but two outstanding albums this past year, James Clem. Two unique releases they are, too. And both should be considered as some of the finest music put out recently by local artists of any genre. The first, Sugar Moon, is a ukulele-centered selection featuring songs from the earlier part of the past century, while the second, Roads Getting Muddy, is more of a traditional blues guitar recording of which James is more known for. Both have been receiving high praise and airplay on Pandora Radio. Expect James to thrill us with both instruments during his performance.

The second set of the night will offer one of our favorite cover bands performing outstanding selections of classic blues, Drop Dead Red. This exciting 6-piece band featuring top-notch musicians bringing decades of musical experience. The word quality exemplifies every aspect of this band, from their talent and well-orchestrated arrangements, to their top-of-the-line equipment.

Drop Dead Red - press photoThe members of Drop Dead Red have all extensive backgrounds in bands from Portland and elsewhere. Theresa Lowe fronts the band on vocals, “Grandma Funk” Joanne Mead lays down the bass lines, with Wilton Merritt providing the other half of the rhythm section. Long time area favorite Tim “The Deacon” Doyle  handles keyboards, Jon Tennis on guitars and Bob Anderson rounding out the act with rich saxophone tones. This is a band who easily draws dancing and smiles. Don’t miss out.

And you know the drill by now. Grab a free drawing ticket at the door for your chance to win CDs, tickets and other prizes. We’ll also have the multi-CD winner take all drawing with tickets for only $1.00 each, purchase as many as you’d like, every cent goes to keep the CBA functioning. And we’ll let you know what’s coming up in September and beyond. But best of all, it’s a great place to meet up with your blues loving friends in a laid back, all ages atmosphere. Come join us for the fun!