“Blues is my life. It’s a true feeling that comes from the heart, not something that just comes out of my mouth. Blues is what I love, and blues is what I always do.” – Koko Taylor
March 31, 2021 Volume 2, Issue 17
The Stories Behind the Music Grab Your Headphones! Chicago Blues Network Brings you Blues Music Podcasts
Dig into the stories behind some of the amazing Blues artists that have appeared on Chicago Blues Network Trading 4s concerts.
Dave Specter, Musical Director and Guitar Instructor with Chicago Blues Network, is also Host of the “Blues From the Inside Out” podcast where he talks with artists like Jimmy Burns, Toronzo Cannon, Joanna Connor, Billy Flynn, Jimmy Johnson, Mud Morganfield & Rick Kreher.
Get the latest from international Blues scenes with Delmark recording artist Johnny Burgin and Producer Stephanie Tice in “No Border Blues”–featuring interviews with Blues artists from all over the world.
These podcasts are supported by Chicago Blues Network–connecting you with Chicago Blues Masters. Which ones are some of your favorites? Tell us on Facebook and Twitter.
Pete’s Pics “Blues in Action” by Peter M. Hurley
When Chicago Blues Hall-Of-Famer JOHN WATKINS is firing on all cylinders, he really turns it out. Long-time solo artist, band leader and member of the ORIGINAL CHICAGO BLUES ALL STARS, John is now helming the JOHN WATKINS BAND(JWB) in Detroit.
Watkins came up the Chicago blues way, playing with Buddy Guy at Theresa’s Lounge, with Koko Taylor, Son Seals and Jr. Wells and others in the clubs, and touring and recording with Willie Dixon, James Cotton and his uncle Jimmy Johnson. His debut album/cd made in France (w/Johnson) HERE I AM contains some of the finest and tighest blues ensemble work on record and is still available through John’s website.
Of the live performance experience John says “it’s a beautiful feeling, one you never forget. My job is to make the listeners happy and always has been.” His new band in Detroit is a nice cross section of veterans and youngsters which keeps the music fresh and lively. He has also teamed recently with oft-bandmate and cohort John Maurice Vaughn and fellow All Star Freddie Dixon for a cd titled 3 BY 3 due out in May of this year. “Playing live and recording is the lifeblood of any musician, blues included,” says Watkins. “We can’t wait until the veil is lifted from playing at clubs and festivals. We’ll be coming out strong when it is.”
Check out John’s 2 cds as a leader, the aforementioned HERE I AM and LIVING THE BLUES (the title song popularly covered by Tracy Nelson is a feature of all her live performances). Available at: https://pmh1951.wixsite.com/johnwatkins2
Photo taken at Motor Row Brewing w/the Original Chicago Blues All Stars, Aug 2016.
– Peter M. Hurley
Mr. Hurley is a contributing photographer and writer for Living Blues Magazine and the staff photographer for Chicago Blues Network. His recent book Blues Legacy: Tradition and Innovation in Chicago, in collaboration with Blues historian and author David Whiteis, showcases his work in the field. His passion for blues music began with the Chess Studios’ sound of Bo Diddley and continues to this day. Visit Peter’s Website here.
Learn 16 Classic Blues Tunes with Chicago Blues Masters
Looking for a way to feed your soul? “At Home Chicago Blues” is an online Blues lesson package. You can learn these 16 songs (just click the jukebox below, then click the red play button next to each tune!) with 45+ video lessons, and weekly LIVE Zoom meetings with Chicago Blues Masters. It gives you an unprecedented opportuntiy to learn directly with musicians who would normally be touring the world! These are some of the songs you will learn:
Guitar Instructor Joanna Connor teaches “Dust My Broom”, followed by the full song, in these two videos below: