Blues enthusiasts from the greater Tampa Bay region and beyond have been excited about this bash since early June.
That’s when the Herald broke the news that internationally circulated Blues Revue magazine had moved its headquarters from California to Bradenton’s Village of the Arts.
The office for the popular publication opened June 12 in the Village Veranda building, 1001 11th Ave. W. Hours of operation are 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday. People have been encouraged from the start to stop by and purchase a current or past copy of the magazine that recently celebrated its 20th anniversary.
Starting Friday, to coincide with Artwalk, the site will also function as a gallery and live music venue.
“We will have 30 Blues Revue covers on display,” said Jack Sullivan, the publication’s Bradenton chief. “Over the years we’ve had everyone from Muddy Waters to B.B. King to Eric Clapton on the cover.”
The free outdoor concert on the office grounds will feature RJ Howson and the Blues Revue All-Stars from 6-9 p.m.
Howson has been gigging actively in the area since relocating from Chicago to Bradenton Beach about a year ago.
The guitarist, singer and songwriter paid his dues as a sideman in the Windy City. One night while backing Doug “The Arkansas Razorback” McDonald at Buddy Guy’s Legends club, Howson stepped to the front of the stage to fire off some hot licks.
“I’ve got my eyes shut while winding down from a solo, and I feel a tap on my shoulder and think it’s the bass player,” Howson recalled. “It’s Buddy Guy. I tried to hand him my guitar and he said, ‘No, no, keep playing.”
Guy ended up sitting in to sing some favorites by his old friend Muddy Waters.
“The pinnacle of everything I did in Chicago was being on stage with Buddy Guy,” Howson said. “That was something I dreamed of for years.”
Howson started thinking about moving to Manatee County after meeting Damon Fowler in late 2008 through mutual friend Scott Cable, who had been hired to produce Fowler’s nationally acclaimed “Sugar Shack” album. The recording sessions took place in Chicago.
Howson and Cable visited Fowler at his Bradenton Beach place over the years. Now Howson and Fowler are neighbors. Cable recently found a place nearby.
“There’s an enormous amount of support for the arts here and a real cool vibe,” Howson said. “And I had to come down here to establish myself as a frontman.”
Garrett Dawson (drums) and Gregg Vorhees (bass) will be backing the frontman with the burgeoning following on Friday.
“I will have some special guests there as well,” Howson said. “I was pretty blown away to be asked to do this show. It’s a big honor and not something to take lightly.”
During the monthly Artwalks occurring when Sullivan and staff aren’t representing the magazine at festivals around the world, he plans to get artists touring through Florida to perform. Sullivan is also considering recording the Bradenton concerts for a Blues Revue CD sampler.
He hopes the event Friday, and future ones, prove mutually beneficial for the magazine and community.
“We want to create visibility for Blues Revue in the Florida area and help bring in new patrons to the Village of the Arts,” Sullivan said. “We’re excited. People from as far away as Jacksonville have already committed to coming.”
Read more: http://www.bradenton.com/2011/08/04/3396105/blues-revue-throws-open-house.html#ixzz1U5P6U9op
Read more: http://www.bradenton.com/2011/08/04/3396105/blues-revue-throws-open-house.html#ixzz1U5OoNCjc
Filed Under: Blues Worthy
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