Playing with Fire 2020 ArtistsSaturday / July 25
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Ghost Town Blues Band
Horns, harmonies and homegrown instruments combined with an energetic and roots rich festival set make Ghost Town Blues Band (GTBB) one of the must-see live bands. “Not your grandpa’s blues band,” GTBB’s latest release Shine debuted at #1 on the 2019 Billboard Blues Chart. Their list of honors and awards for the last two years is too long to list here! Recently headlining the blues stage at The Montreal Jazz Festival and fresh off their European debut at the Grolsch Blues Festival in Germany, GBBT is Beale Street’s latest success story, 5-time Blues Blast Music Award Nominee and International Blues Challenge Runner-up. Living Blues Magazine proclaims, “This is 21st-century blues at its best. With a shoot-from-the-hip Memphis attitude and a STAX-busting explosion of modern blues vision, GTBB represents a welcome changing of the guard.” www.ghosttownbluesband.com
Paris-based Caribbean blues trio Delgres delivers this genre as world music. Named after a Creole officer in the French army who died in Guadeloupe in 1802 battling Napoleon’s army over slavery, the band’s distinct sound reflects its eclectic tastes — jazz, Afro-Caribbean, R&B, and British rock. An Amazon review describes the band: “The group’s blend of Mississippi Delta blues, Caribbean rhythms, and Big Easy funk is injected with a dose of caustic trance rock that calls to mind Touareg soul, John Lee Hooker, and the Black Keys. This rebellious, fiery music hits home today by making both our minds and bodies sing.” www.delgresmusic.com
Rex Granite Band featuring Sarah Benck
Omaha, Nebraska, USA
This Omaha-based, blues/rock original band battled as a 2020 finalist in The Blues Foundation, International Blues Challenge in Memphis. A regional favorite, the band won the 2017 OEA “Best Blues” award and was a 2018 nominee for the honor. The band draws its fresh, retro sound from a variety of sources. Straight-up rock and roll, blues, and gospel all play heavily in their gutsy roots-rock style. The band’s fire-power lies with the original songwriting and unique vocals of Sarah along with Sarah/Rex guitar chemistry.
To be announed
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.