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The Multiple Sclerosis Society of Portland’s (MSSP) fourth annual Blues 4MS concert is coming up on Sunday, March 2, 2014 at the Aladdin Theatre.  Great thanks to the Cascade Blues Association for co-sponsoring the event and an even greater thanks to CBA’s President Greg Johnson for putting together a spectacular line up.

The fun starts at 3 pm with The Fabulous Bad Cats. This five-piece outfit offers original and classic rock, funk and blues. These guys have one aim in mind, that’s to get you onto the dance floor and show you a good time.

Soul Cookin’ is an all-star line-up that has been hosting Wednesday nights at Blackwell’s for the past couple of years. Led by Oregon Music Hall of Fame members Lloyd Jones and Carlton Jackson on guitar and drums respectively, alongside bassist Dave Kahl (Paul deLay Band, Fiona Boyes) and keyboard master Louis Pain (Paul deLay Band, King Louie & Sweet Baby James). Expect to hear some funky cool tunes and steamy blues as this group sets the groove.

The Robbie Laws Band is the resident act for Blues For MS, having performed every year at this event. Cascade Blues Association Muddy Award winner twenty-one times over, including nine times for electric guitar player of the year, Robbie Laws is a true icon of the Northwest Blues scene. This performance helps celebrate the band’s latest release, Between the Lines.

The Rae Gordon Band is fresh back from a successful showing at The International Blues Challenge in Memphis, TN, where they advanced to the semi-finals. Rae was also named the recipient of the 2013 Duffy Bishop Female Vocalist of the year at the Muddy Awards and her latest CD Blue Lemonade was named one of the top CDs in the State of Oregon for the year by 1859 magazine.

Since taking second place overall at the International Blues Challenge in 2010, Karen Lovely has been on a steady rise toward the top of the blues world. With three Blues Music Awards nominations, appearances at some of the largest blues festivals and tours throughout the United States, Canada and into Europe, Karen is about to unleash her third CD to a highly anticipating audience. Her shows feature top-shelf musicians and cover not only her own material, but often what she terms as Prohibition Blues, exploring the female artists of the early years of the blues.

And to close the evening, be prepared to party New Orleans style, as one of the city’s most funky bands, The Roseland Hunters, promises to get you out of your seat and setting your backside into motion, Another all-star conglomeration that stretches across genres from Portland’s musical grab-bag of talent, with guitarist Michael Quinby leading the pack on guitar and vocals, alongside the talents of percussionist/drummer/vocalist Brian Foxworth, bassist Damian Erskine, keyboardist Chris Phillips and drummer Reinhardt Melz. This is a dream band that starts a party every time they perform.

A $10 suggested donation is encouraged.  Donations will remain in Oregon to support the local MS community.  MSSP seeks to improve the quality of life for those living with MS, including family members and caregivers.  We help take care of the here and now needs.

This year, we are raffling a fabulous Normandy electric guitar, hand signed by the Doobie Brothers.  Raffle tickets will be sold at $5 each or 6/$25. The winning tickets will be selected following the last set on March 2nd and the lucky ticket holders need not be present to win.

Come prepared to have a great time listening to some of the best blues talent around.  In the meantime, go to www.blues4ms.org or call 503 297-9544 for more information.

Jackson Lee (photo by Steve Nassar)

Jackson Lee (photo by Steve Nassar)

Former Cascade Blues Association President and long-time Board Member Jackson Lee has inoperable esophagus cancer and is terminal. His friends at The Trails End Saloon have put together a special benefit to help raise money for non-medical expenses such as his need to relocate to a new home, rent and other various expenses that are not covered by his Veterans medical benefits. This event is scheduled to take place on Sunday, September 15th.

Confirmed acts for this benefit at this time are The Rae Gordon Band, Bill Rhoades & The Party Kings, Megan James, Albert Reda, Scott Bouck, HiFi Mojo and Papa Rocket. The show will start at 2:00 pm running until 9:00 pm. This time may be extended depending on the number of other acts who request to help out. Suggested donation is $10.00. There will be raffle tickets and 50/50 tickets for sale and there will be a silent auction. Items are being sought for a raffle/auction; if you have anything you would like to offer please contact either Darlene Liedtke or Cindy Benda at The Trails End.

Please come out to help assist Jackson Lee at this event. One of the hardest working and devoted Board Members of the Cascade Blues Association for many years and a true lover of the local blues scene and musicians.

The Strange Tones

Hello Everybody,

Well summer’s in full swing, and it’s so nice to be playing and seeing friends in the great outdoors! We have such a variety of fun summer shows, from Pioneer Square to Willamette Park to Ilwaco Blues Fest, to name a few, and it’s always great to have a wider audience join our beloved usual suspects!

And when not gigging, we’ve also been spending a lot of time underground in the volcano, working on our top secret recording sessions. In fact, we just finished wrapping up the project and have sent it out for CD production!

And we have BIG NEWS: We’ve found the perfect location, and set the date for the official CD release! It’s going to be on Friday, September 20, at the Bossanova Ballroom. Located a few blocks from the Melody Ballroom, this historic Portland venue has been beautifully Read more

La Rhonda Steele Etta James Tribute Show @ Jimmy Mack's

La Rhonda Steele
Etta James Tribute Show @ Jimmy Mack’s

Arguably one of the most important singers in the history of blues music, Etta James carved her reputation in the form of many indelible hits over a seven decade career.
After her passing, piano and boogie master DK Stewart organized this tribute show with a live recording, and the ensuing CD has received well due praise.
In addition to DK on piano, the band features Chris Carlson and Peter Dammann (guitars), Mike Klobas (drums), Joseph Conrad (bass), Louis Pain (Organ), Chris Mercer (sax), and Joe McCarthy (trumpet).
The line-up of vocalists reads like a who’s who of female leads and includes Rae Gordon, LaRhonda Steele, Duffy Bishop, Lady Kat, and Lisa Mann…whew, what a roster!
This is a show that was featured at the Waterfront Blues Festival, but this year you’ll be able to enjoy it in the intimate setting of Jimmy Mak’s. Don’t wait, get your tickets now because we expect both performances to sell out.

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Reserve Your Tickets Now

Two Shows at 7:30 & 10pm
$12 Reserved Seating/$10 General Admission
Advanced tickets available at Tickettomato.com

 

Ben Rice

Ben Rice

Please join the Cascade Blues Festival first thing July 4th when you attend the Safeway Waterfront Blues Festival as we present the finals for our Journey To Memphis competition starting at noon on the Front Porch Stage. Four acts will compete to see who will represent the CBA and the region at the International Blues Challenge in Memphis, TN next January.

Eleven acts participated in the first round, held at The Trails End in Oregon City the first weekend of June. Those acts included: Alan Hager & Dave Fleschner, Chad Rupp & Josh Makosky, David Pinsky & Phil Newton, Howard Wade, Lisa Mann & Her Really Good Band, Rae Gordon & Gaddis Cavenah, Tevis Hodge Jr., The Ben Rice Band, The Hitmen, The Mojoblasters, and The Rae Gordon Band. All acts were judged in five catagories, following the guidelines set by The Blues Foundation and the top two scoring acts from each night advanced to the finals at the Waterfront Blues Festival. Those winners were: Lisa Mann & Her Really Good Band, Tevis Hodge Jr., The Ben Rice Band and The Mojoblasters.

 

Lisa Mann

Lisa Mann

A huge thanks to The Trails End for letting us hold our opening round at their venue, and to our judges: longtime musician Jim Mayer, music publicist & promoter Matt Kalinowski and sound engineer, music product specialist & KBOO DJ Phil Garfinkel. Also a quick thanks in advance to the Oregon Food Bank and the Waterfront Blues Festival for allowing us to use the Front Porch Stage for our event finals and for the prize package they offer as well.

 

Make a point to also check out 2012 Journey To Memphis winners The Muddy Sons and Franco & The Stingers, as well as 2012 International Blues Challenge Solo/Duo winner Ray Bonneville and 2013 Band winners Selwyn Birchwood Band, all performing at the Waterfront Blues Festival.

 

 

Alan Hagar

Alan Hagar

Always one of the Cascade Blues Association’s largest events of the year is the Journey To Memphis; our regional competition to select our representatives from the region to compete in The Blues Foundation’s International Blues Challenge next year in Memphis, Tennessee. This year’s event returns to the newly renovated Trails End Saloon in Oregon City on Friday, June 7th and Saturday, June 8th, starting at 8:00 pm both nights.
This year we have fourteen entries; seven will compete each night before a set of three judges scoring the acts on blues content, instrumentation talent, vocal talent, originality and stage presence. All will have a timed 30-minute set and the two highest scoring acts from each night will advance to the finals held on July 4th at the Safeway Waterfront Blues Festival.

Admission to the Journey To Memphis is $10.00 each night. All admissions will cover the cost of production and form the base prize received by the winners to help defray their traveling expenses to Memphis.

Scheduled Times and Act Sets are as follows (note: these are subject to change as the acts are not required to play a full 30-minute set. If they go overtime, they will be penalized a point for every 10 seconds over.)

Friday, June 7th:

  • 8:00 – Howard Wade
  • 8:40 – Alan Hager & Dave Fleschner
  • 9:20 – Rae Gordon Band
  • 10:00 – Alan Benson Experience
  • 10:40 – Chad Rupp & Josh Makosky
  • 11:20 – The Mojo Blasters
  • 12:00 – Ben Rice Band

Saturday, June 8th:

  • 8:00 – Rose City Rats featuring Savanna Coen
  • 8:40 – David Pinsky & Phil Newton
  • 9:20 – Lisa Mann & Her Really Good Band
  • 10:00 – Tevis Hodge, Jr.
  • 10:40 – Beacon Street Titans
  • 11:20 – The Hitmen
  • 12:00 – Rae Gordon & Gaddis Cavenah (Duo)

Early last year, following the passing of the great Etta James, a tribute show was held at the Alberta Rose Theatre featuring five of the city’s finest female vocalists: Amy Keys, Duffy Bishop, LaRhonda Steele, Lisa Mann and Rae Gordon backed by the DK Stewart Sextet and Friends. That event was recorded and highlights of it have been released as a CD titled Tell Mama.

To celebrate the CD’s release, a new show has been put together which will take place at the Alberta Rose Theatre on Friday, March 15th at 8:00 pm. Returning will be the DK Stewart Sextet along with singers Amy Keys, Duffy Bishop, LaRhonda Steele, Rae Gordon and added for this event Lady Kat.

Tickets are available through www.albertarosetheatre.com and are $15.00 in advance. This is a CBA co-sponsored event and members can receive a $2.00 discount when ordering on-line by using the code CBA. Minors are okay when accompanied by a parent or guardian. The Alberta Rose Theatre is located at 3000 NE Alberta St., Portland.

Do not miss out on what is certainly going to be yet another night of incredible music in tribute to the late Etta James.