Ramblings On My MindGreg Johnson / CBA President

Wow! Putting together the BluesNotes for February I am overwhelmed by the number of shows happening throughout the month. And that is on top of all the great local music that takes place every single night of the week all year long. I for one have to say I need somebody to give me a loan, because there is just no way I can afford to make all of these events, let alone having the time to see them all. Unless somebody has one of those “Way Back Machines” from the old Rocky & Bullwinkle cartoons so I can time travel and hit them all.

My month really starts out busy, though, away from home. I will once again be traveling back to Memphis to help The Blues Foundation with the International Blues Challenge. This is always a privilege for me as I get to assist my good friends in Tennessee, while being able to see lots of great acts I may have never heard of or only seen a few times. Plus I get to be around first-hand for our own entries in the competition, Franco & The Stingers and The Muddy Sons. Let’s wish them great success in Memphis. If not coming home as the winners, which we hope they do, they will also make top contacts that will help to further their careers.Go get ‘em guys!!

As happens quite often in a city filled with so many wonderful musicians and events taking place all the time, many happen on the same date. That occurs this month with the CBA’s Sweetheart Dance and the Winter Blues Festival and again in early March with B.B. King and Bill Rhoades’ Harmonica Summit. The CBA is not going to recommend one event over another, even if it is our own. We want you to decide what shows you want to see. Our job is to let you know about all of the blues happening in our area so you can make a thought-out decision on what to attend. You really cannot go wrong with any choice you make. And maybe you’re a brave and challenging soul, like I have been known to be, and find yourself bouncing from one venue to another trying to take in as much as you can. But at least we have this option here as many cities across the country, and many far larger than Portland, do not have the number of choices we do on a regular basis.

Which leads me once again to state to all of you performers and venues out there, please submit your dates to the BluesNotes (by the 15th of the month) so we can include them in our calendar. If people don’t know, they’re not going to show up to see you. And isn’t it a lot more fun when you can have a crowd in a room to hear you perform?

Anyway, after February is over with and trying to see as many acts as possible, it might be time to take a nap to catch up on some rest . . . but I am more than certain March will be just as exciting, and then April, May and so on. Don’t you just love how much blues there is in our little Northwest corner of the country? See you out there and enjoy!!