We recently posted this list on the CBA Facebook page. It received a thankful response from so many that we thought we would run it in the BluesNotes, too This list is a compilation of regional musicians who were nominated for the 2013 Muddy Awards. Though the final ballot is limited to only a few in each category, all of the following artists were recognized by our members in the ballots returned to us for nominations in the first round.
Greetings friends! Hope all is well in your world. I can hardly believe festival season is upon us once again. I have been very busy with teaching, writing, recording, gigging and somewhere in there, finding some balance at our beautiful new home in the country. From all of this hard work does come the fruits of our labor and I am so happy to let you all know about what’s been going on.
Start your Waterfront Blues Festival day out right on Thursday, July 4th where you’ll find the Robbie Laws Band on the North Stage from 1:15-2:30 pm. It’s always such an honor and a thrill to perform at the best blues festival around and I look forward to seeing you there. We’ve also got an amazing event happening at the outdoor amphitheater on top of Mt. St. Helens (Johnston Ridge Observatory) on Saturday, August 3rd from 3:30-8:30 pm. This is a special benefit concert for the Science and Learning Center at Coldwater. The SLC is a great resource for schools, education groups and researchers interested in taking field trips and doing research at Mt. St. Helens. We’ve got quite a special line up for you with the Robbie Laws band featuring Dover Weinberg and Willis Moss, the fabulous Karen Lovely and one of our longtime favorites, Lloyd Jones. The mountain setting is unbelievably spectacular and this is a day you don’t want to miss, so come on up to the mountain and have a great time with us.
In other big news, I am super excited about the recent launching of my brand new website at www.RobbieLawsMusic.com. Of course you’ll find the standard fare of a music website, but what I’m most excited about is the introduction of ‘Online Live with Robbie Laws’ one-on-one web guitar lessons in addition to several new guitar classes and workshops held at my private studio in SE Portland. I’ll be holding a Songwriting for Guitar class every first Sunday of the month as well as several options for one day guitar workshops at the studio. Please do me a favor and check out the new site and let me know what you think. I want to give a special shout out to my man Chad Boston of designsbyboston.com for doing such a great job on the site. Highly recommended!
Lastly, the final touches are happening on the new album and we’re coming into the home stretch (“Thank God”). Between all of our hectic schedules, it’s been challenging at times to get this project completed. Fingers crossed, it looks like we’ll have an August release date later this summer, so keep your eyes out for that. I am feeling really good about this one.
I look forward to seeing you out and about enthusiastically supporting live music at our great local venues. Have a great time at the Waterfront Blues Festival!
The last month has given me a lot to be thankful for. In light of my wife’s emergency, the outpouring of concern and love was astonishing and our family thanks you all. Add to this the news of my hearing-related issues and, again, the remarkable support and offers – I am breathless and affirmed. This is one incredible community.
Suggestions have been made and I’ve acted on all of them. I am certain that this old guy will see – and hear – some positive changes very soon. Thanks, again for your love. There are just too many of you to name, but you know who you are.
I’d like to take the opportunity to mention the two week night gigs that have held me up, have offered some great moments and memories, and that I’d like to see you attend. Tuesdays at 9pm, the Dover Weinberg Quartet at Duff’s Garage (corner of S.E. 7th Avenue and Market Street), with Chris Carlson, Kelly Dunn, and me, along with special guests, is happening. Looks good for this one to last through the end of the year, but it is certainly better when there are people to share with.
On Wednesdays, Blackwell’s (1815 N.E. 41st Avenue) hosts Soul Cookin’ with Lloyd Jones, Carlton Jackson, Dover Weinberg, and, again, me. Killing, stinky, greasy, funky blues and soul. Need I say more? Okay, how about some very talented guests, who just all happen to be musical friends. We’ve met some new ones on this gig, so the circle is getting bigger. We’d love to have you support this wonderful group of guys and this very cool venue.
I’d like to thank Ty Curtis and Bill Rhoades, especially for filling my calendar. Looks good for me to hook up for one night in September with Fiona Boyes and Jimi Bott. Although it’s in Illinois, hopefully we can find some compelling reason for Fiona to come to Portland.
That is all for now, but it’s more than enough. Thanks again.
As many of you know, the Dover Weinberg Quartet has had some tremendous times on Tuesday nights at Duff’s Garage over the past few years, making good music, good times, and great memories. While we’re not certain what the long term will look like, we are sure of one thing – the month of May will still have us holding down the fort, awaiting your much appreciated presence. From 9 pm to Midnight, Dover, Chris Carlson, Kelly Dunn, and Dave Kahl will be playing whatever moves them at the moment.
As if anything we do weren’t enough – from blues to bop, swing to rock, classic tunes to twisted arrangements – the addition of any special guests only makes the night more open to pleasant surprises. A great venue, friendly staff, large dance floor, and warm welcome await you.
Duff’s Garage is located at 1635 S.E. 7th Avenue, on the corner of Market Street. Cover is just $3.00.
Long Walk Home
Jump ahead two months. Kevin & The Tornadoes had just completed a stellar set at the Waterfront Blues Festival featuring many of the same cats from the new album on stage with them. I was sitting in the VIP area with Tornadoes bassist Allen Markel and his wife Lisa Mann as I noticed Kevin across the way in conversation with Delta Groove boss Randy Chortkoff. Kevin soon walked over with a grin on his face. “You just got signed, didn’t you?” I asked him. He didn’t need to say anything. By the way his face lit up even more I knew he had. And why not? A good portion of those appearing on the album, like Mitch Kashmar, Gene Taylor, Doug James and even Tornadoes drummer Jimi Bott had all been on Delta Groove releases in the past. It was a natural fit with its traditional blues flavored by with a little West Coast flair.
The album, Long Walk Home, is by far the finest moment in Kevin Selfe’s songwriting abilities yet. The guest artists are a nice touch, but in reality it is the core group of The Tornadoes, Kevin with Allen and Jimi, that make this all come to life. The tracks are filled with gritty down home guitar work that takes you to the swamp or to the back alleys and even a little resonator thrown in for good measure. You can sense the Louisiana bayou come through on something like “Midnight Creeper” or “Too Much Voodoo.” You can feel the impact of Elmore James and Hound Dog Taylor on the slide piece “Put Me Back In Jail.” The pulsations of “Duct Tape On My Soul” and “Mama Didn’t Raise No Fool” delivers prime Kevin Selfe creations that have been primed for some time in his live performances. And his writing also makes you wonder about his luck with the opposite sex as he relates tales of the woman who breaks up after having him pack her things and moving her into a new home (“first you broke my back, then you broke my heart”) on “Moving Day Blues,” the “Dancing Girl” who shakes it with all those guys right in front of him while he plays, a little bit too provocative for his taste, and the girl who shows up after he’s been waiting for her to come home all night long whose clothes aren’t on just right and she’s “Walking Funny.” The stories are first class and blues through and through.
The band is also enhanced by the sensational horn parts arranged by Joe McCarthy. Some of these pieces have long been in Kevin’s songbook, like “Moving Day Blues” and “Walking Funny.” But they take on even more life with the brass added, courtesy of Chris Mercer, Brad Ulrich, Peter Moss, Doug James and McCarthy. Mitch Kashmar’s harp on “Mama Didn’t Raise No Fool” has that same impact, as does the keyboard work by Steve Kerin and Dover Weinberg in their appearances on the disc.
This is an album sure to be counted as one of the best Northwest releases of the year, and perhaps even amongst the best everywhere. Kevin Selfe & The Tornadoes work endlessly throughout the region all year long; but with Long Walk Home I predict we’re going to see a lot less of the guys as they will be in demand far outside of the area once people get the taste of this release. Excellent is only a mild term when describing this masterful work. Bravo Kevin Selfe!
Total Time: 50:09
Duct Tape On My Soul / Mama Didn’t Raise No Fool / Moving Day Blues / Last Crossroad / Dancing Girl / Midnight Creeper / Walking Funny / Too Much Voodoo / Second Box On The Left / The Blues Is My Home / Put Me Back In Jail
Kevin Selfe and the Tornadoes February 24
Hi everybody! So, I have some really big news to share with you this month…we have signed a recording deal with world renown blues label, Delta Groove! The new CD entitled Long Walk Home is set to be released worldwide on February 19 and features 11 songs, all originals. Lots of incredible musicians on it including my band mates Jimi Bott and Allen Markel, Mitch Kashmar, Gene Taylor, Doug James, Joe McCarthy, Brad Ulrich, Steve Kerin, Chris Mercer, and Dover Weinberg. So very excited and honored to be a part of the Delta Groove family! I wanted to say thanks to Jimi and Allen, and all the musicians for putting in many hours of hard work and effort that went into making this happen. And also wanted to say thanks to Randy Chortkoff of Delta Groove for believing in me and giving us this opportunity! For more information about the CD and about the band and upcoming schedules, please feel free to visit www.deltagrooveproductions.com or www.kevinselfe.com
And speaking of upcoming schedules, now since we have the CD coming out, we’ve got to have a big party! On Sunday, February 24, we will have a CD release party at Duff’s Garage in SE Portland from 7-10pm. In addition to Jimi, Allen, and me, many musicians from the recording will be joining us on stage including Mitch Kashmar, Joe McCarthy, Brad Ulrich, Steve Kerin, Chris Mercer, and Dover Weinberg. Cover for the show is $12, and since it is a CBA co-sponsored show, members can get a $1 discount at the door.
This month marks six years since I packed up everything I owned and moved from Virginia to Portland without knowing a soul. Since then, I have made lifelong friends, experienced happiness inside and outside of music, grown both as a musician and as a person, have become part of a loving blues community. I can’t thank you all enough for welcoming me, accepting me, and showing your support over these six years. I am, and will be, forever grateful. Thank you all!