Playing with Fire 2020 Artists

Friday / July 24

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MonkeyJunk with special guest Paul Reddick

Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

MonkeyJunk has two Blues Album of the Year wins in 2018 and 2012 from the Juno Awards (Canada’s Grammys), two Canadian Independent Music Awards and a collective 20 Maple Blues Awards under their belts.  But, the true measure of the “Sultans of Swamp R&B” lies in the band’s live performances. The Ontario-based, internationally acclaimed trio returns to Playing with Fire on their musical journey with a sound that’s described as a “contemporary blend of swamp R&B, soul boogie, and bedroom funk.”

Special guest, Paul Reddick, is also a veteran PwF performer and acclaimed Canadian music mainstay. The esteemed blues singer, songwriter and harmonica player was awarded the 2017 Blues Album of the Year after four previous nominations in the category.  Renowned for his intense and hypnotic performances, Paul Reddick has developed a loyal following among both his fans and musical peers and continues to be one of the most compelling performers on the Canadian music scene.

Supporting Artist:

Nikki Hill Band

New Orleans, Louisiana

Hitting like a hurricane, the Nikki Hill Band band delivers a ”jump-and-jive, stompin’-soul-shouting” and dancing good time. Frontwoman Nikki Hill’s vocals growl, coo and testify, blending with the blistering guitar work of husband Matt.  The Alternate Root calls the nationally and internationally-touring band’s newest release, Feline Roots “a supercharged mix of Blues, Punk Rock, Tent Show Gospel, Rockabilly, and feral Rock ‘n Soul shoot through with steroids.”PopMatters explains, “When you have a powerful Southern soul singer with a penchant for AC/DC, you know you’re going to get something badass–talent not to be ignored.”

Local Artist:


Omaha, Nebraska, USA

BluesEd is an award-winning non-profit youth talent development program sponsored by Blues Society of Omaha with the mission of “Keeping the Blues Alive.” The BluesEd program began in 2001 and was created to provide opportunities for talented Middle School and High School age musicians to play with other students in a performance band format. Through a series of workshops, BluesEd students learn a repertoire of blues music, along with learning the art of improvisation and solos, the methodology of rehearsals, techniques of jamming, stage presence and performance, and the historical origins of the blues genre. Students have multiple performance opportunities at some of the finest festivals and venues in and around Omaha and Lincoln, Nebraska. 

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