B1 was fortunate enough to have Bob Corritore in class last night. Bob regaled us with great stories about all the musicians he's worked with through the years, producing them, recording with them, interviewing them on his radio show, and booking them at his club, The Rhythm Room in Phoenix. He also stressed the value of the studio and learning from your recordings and urged that you should never release anything you're not proud of:
"If you record something and you're not satisfied with it, I think it's your responsibility not to put it out. A lot of people say, "Well, I'm on a budget." There's no such thing as a budget when you're really producing because the budget is (that) you need to get something that you're going to be proud of."Bob was also inspiring in terms of following your musical dreams and encouraged us not to "wait your turn":
"If you want to do something, you should go and do it. If you want to record a record or explore who you want to be as an artist, feel free to skip some steps of the 'protocol' and do it! There are no rules when it comes to growing and making a career out of this - the limitations are completely your own."Be sure to check out Bob's website and sign up for his newsletter: Bob Corritore. Bob's blues radio show airs weekly on KJZZ (link at his site).
Huge thank you to Jim Murphy for backing Bob on guitar. Also thanks to Ivan Marcio from Brazil and Scott Dirks for joining us in class last night!
This year's Chicago Blues Fest in honor of Howlin' Wolf was a big success, despite a little rain. Joe Filisko turned out 350-400 new harp players through his wildly successful beginning harmonica lessons, a first at the festival. The B1 Blues Crew noticed there were harmonica players everywhere this year, both on the stage and off. Here's a quick round up:
On stage (27):
Billy Boy Arnold, Terry "Harmonica" Bean, Sugar Blue, Billy Branch, Big George Brock, Grady Champion, Andy Cornett, Bob Corritore, James Cotton, Joe Filisko, Michael Frank, Adam Gussow, Deak Harp, Chris Harper, Gerry Hundt, Martin Lange, Bill Lupkin, Charlie Musselwhite, Joe Nosek, Bennie Rickun, Bobby Rush, Zoe Savage, Corky Siegel, Matthew Skoller, Rob Stone, Otis Taylor
In the crowd (33):
Matias Beltran, Mojo Mark Cihlar, John Costa, Andrew Diehl, Scott Dirks, Pat Fiege, Leo Gordon, Linda Gordon, John Hite, Jeffrey Justice, Grant Kessler, Paul Krueger, Bob Kunze, Jim Liban, Bayou Bill Lyday, Kirk Manley, Ivan Marcio, Rick Mason, Ginny Morin, Shoji Naito, Phil Peterson, Gene Plotnic, Jeff Reynolds, Mark Riordon, Ray Sarna, Little Laura Schlenker, Jon Simon, Morry Sochat, Tim Spahn , Big Al Spencer, Al Taylor, Highway RickEy Trankle, Dave Waldman
(Our apologies if we missed you -- let us know if you were there!)
And making his debut at the fest was this wildly popular little guy, Gerry Hundt's two and a half year-old son. He had poise, was not at all freaked by the crowd, held the mic like a pro and played rhythmic draw notes! Awesome! Thanks to Amy Brat for the pics:
Kim Wilson's wife Amanda is organizing a phenomenal harp show at The Rhythm Room this October. For three solid days you can catch players like James Cotton, Lazy Lester, Billy Boy Arnold, Kim Wilson, Paul Oscher, RJ Mischo, Dave Waldman and the list goes on! The show is 50% sold already, so get your tickets now.
- Joe will be teaching a comprehensive blow bend lecture next week at 8:00pm. This class is titled:"How to Play the High Notes Without Threat of Divorce or Eviction." All students are welcome to stick around for this one. Be prepared by bringing all these harps to class: LF, G, A, Bb, C, D, E, F.
- Be sure to get your copy of the recent recital CD from Joe and make a contribution to the class fund -- this makes it possible for us to continue doing successful "extras" like the recital and having class guests!
- Shoji will not be in classes next week. Grant and Joe will be on guitar, so go easy on them!
- Fun Joe quote: "The harmonica is the iPod of yesteryear - lightweight, portable music in your pocket."
PFOS conducted a song contest for a theme song for the film Pocket Full of Soul: The Harmonica Documentary. The rules were simple - craft a song less than 5 minutes long, it must use the phrase "pocket full of soul", and it must feature the harmonica. When the submission period ended, we had received more songs than we ever imagined.
Although only one song could be chosen as the theme song, and that honor goes to Peter Madcat Ruth, any of them could have been it. As we see it, they all won.
You may not have heard of many of these artists, but we have a feeling they've rocked, rolled, soothed, freaked, amazed, grooved, and generally provided a helluva good time to a large number of people over the years. And that is what is at the heart of this collection - good times, music, general stuff for the soul. So to all the musicians who championed the spirit of creativity in the name of Operation//Creation and gave the world an original tune, and to everyone else who has joined our adventure, thanks for your continued support. We are truly honored by the participation of the artists involved and we hope that you check out Operation//Creation.
The CD features songs by the following artists:
Peter Madcat Ruth
Vinnie and Janice Zummo and Rob Paparozzi
Jeff Blackwell and Harry Forhand
Ethan and Doke Ford
Will and Todd Vogman
Dave Nevling and the Blues Kats
Jack Edery and Paul Orta
Rusty Winz and Josal
Vinnie Zummo and Rob Paparozzi
Keep Breathing music!
- Grant Kessler, B1 Blues Crew