We caught up with Blues & Boogie Woogie piano legend Mitch Woods during the second week of Jazzfest in New Orleans. Mitch was playing upright piano at The Bywater Bakery, and was joined by my Blues Odyssey 2019 partner, TBone Hamilton from St. Pete, FL. on bass. Mitch & T-Bone played a nice set for the Friday morning patrons and staff. Starting things off, the classic ‘Let the Good Times Roll ‘
Sometimes a certain performance will just jump out and grab you. That’s how I felt at this year’s Tampa Bay Blues Fest during the finale of Mike Zito’s set. It was a blustery Sunday, Mike and his band, Terry Dry, Matthew Johnson, and Lewis Stephens, had put more miles behind them recently than they probably cared to remember, but you’d never know by watching. This two song set to finish things up was emotional and energy filled. See if you don’t agree. Make a point to catch these guys live, for their current schedule check Mike Zito’s social media pages or www.mikezito.com
Part 1 of the 6 part video series from Salt Lake City, Utah during the Utah Blues Festival: Ronnie Earl & The Utah Blues Society arranged a community outreach show at The Inn Between, a hospice for the homeless. Initially, Ronnie Earl was to play 30 minutes for the residents & staff. Instead, we enjoyed (almost) an hour-long performance by: Ronnie Earl, Sue Foley, Chris K Royal, & Dave Clark along with Utah Blues Society board member, Tripp Hopkins. These talented musicians provided an afternoon of friendship & entertainment for a very grateful audience. This heartfelt event shows just one example of how The Blues has healing power, the kindness of its community & the generosity of its musicians. For more information on the services provided by this much-needed facility, visit them at www.tibhospice.org
One of Mike Zito’s most powerful songs, and always a concert favorite is ‘Judgement Day’. This version was performed recently at The Tampa Bay Blues Fest on a blustery April afternoon. Along with Mike is Matt Johnson on drums, Terry Dry on bass, and Louis Stevens on keyboards. For more info on Mike Zito, his band, music, and tour info go to www.mikezito.com
Blues guitar legend Luther ‘Guitar Junior’ Johnson performing in the intimate setting of The Hideaway Café in downtown St. Petersburg, FL. Luther was one of the special guests of The Kid Royal Band for this New Years show. The Kid Royal Band is Chris Royal on vocals & guitar, Ashley and Taylor Galbraith on bass and drums. also sitting in was blues harmonica great, T.C. Carr. This 40 minute set features blues classics including tracks from Luther’s many years playing alongside Muddy Waters. The two other segments from this great New Years show include The opening set from The Kid Royal Band with T.C. Carr, and the final segment which featured another blues legend, Bryan Lee, and an encore appearance of Luther Johnson to end the show.
It has been an amazing year, full of special moments for The Blues & Roots Digital Archive. This informal, semi-unplugged set from Mike Zito & Albert Castiglia at the Charlotte, NC., Marriott Hotel was not only one of our favorite sets of 2019, but one of the highlights of the two day Intrepid Artists 25th Anniversary event, held Nov. 8th & 9th. Albert & Mike played close to an hour and a half featuring cuts from both artists new 2019 releases, as well as digging deep into the catalogs of each. Enjoy this classic performance from two of today’s most popular bluesmen, Mike Zito & Albert Castiglia