Monday, April 28, 2008

Bobby Parker Hospitalized - Benefit March 11 at Surf Club

Terence McArdle posted the following on the RockinRecords list at Ironically, the picture of Bobby is from the benefit he played for Memphis Gold back in March. Memphis is playing this show.

"Blues singer and guitarist Bobby Parker, famous for his hit records “Watch Your Step” (V-Tone label, 1961) and “Blues Get Off My Shoulder” (VJ label, 1958) as well as his two contemporary blues CDs on the Black Top label, has been hospitalized for the past three and a half weeks. Presently, he is at Georgetown University Hospital in Washington, D.C. where he has undergone surgery for a mass in his stomach. Georgetown has a reputation as one of the best facilities for internal medicine on the East Coast – that’s the good news. The bad news is that Bobby has had to cancel all his immediate local engagements as well as an appearance at New Orleans’ Ponderosa Stomp. His bills are mounting.

For those in the Washington, D.C. area, there will be a benefit concert at the Surf Club, 4711 Kenilworth Ave., Riverdale, Md. on Sunday, May 11th featuring The Nighthawks, Memphis Gold, and Terence McArdle & Jumpin’ Tonight with some special guests. We plan to set up a custodial account for Bobby’s bills probably through the auspices of the Washington Area Music Association (WAMA-DC).

In the meantime, those who want help out by sending donations can writing checks payable to Bobby Parker and send them in care of the DC Blues Society, PO Box 77315, Washington, DC 20013.

You may also send cards and letter to Bobby care of Terence McArdle, PO Box 6548, Silver Spring, MD 20916 – and I will hand deliver them to him in the hospital. (I think this may be better than dealing with the hospital’s internal mailroom.) Please keep Bobby in your thoughts and prayers.

Thank you,

Terence McArdle"

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Candye Kane

Candye Kane
Originally uploaded by NoVARon
Those in the Blues World recently received the unhappy news that the marvelous Candye Kane was diagnosed with cancer. A week from today she will be having surgery as part of her treatment. She has made some lifestyle changes including going vegan, and in a post to Blues-L she mentions she states: "I am in great shape right now, my skin is soft, my eyes are clear and bright and I know I will survive this surgery and recuperate quickly."

And is is not letting to prospect of the surgery deter her. She wrote:
"It was an amazing week when many of my musician friends, Sue Palmer, Paul Loranger, Sharon Shufelt, Jonny Viau, April West, Pete Harris, Melissa Hague and Steve Wilcox recorded with me at PH studios in Escondido. We recorded some standards I have always wanted to record; At Last, I Got It Bad and That Ain't Good, He’s Funny That Way, and Joe Liggins' I Gotta Right to Cry (which was one of the songs I used to strip to as a young dancer in the early 80’s). We will go back in on April 16th to record a few more tunes before I enter the hospital. I felt like it was important to do this, because if something did go wrong in surgery, (which it wont!!!) at least I have recorded some of my all time favorite songs. I know everything will be fine but it felt so special and heartwarming to have my musician friends rally around me and donate their talents and studio time for free. I am one lucky girl."

"I continue to be humbled and awed by so many beautiful gestures of friendship and love from you. I have received so many cards (many with checks!) letters, emails and phone calls. Pay pal gifts continue to stream in. …

She lists a variety of benefits so if there is one near your, give a hand For those in DC area note the Clarendon ballroom Benefit:

April 14 Phoenix, Az/Rhythm Room/ Bob Corritore, Sistah Blue, Pete Pearson and friends
April 18 Candye surgery/ UCSD Thornton Hospital/ La Jolla California
April 20 San Diego, Ca/ O’Connells/ Joey Harris, Lady Dottie and the Diamonds, Mojo Nixon, Paul Kamanski, Behind the Wagon and friends
April 20 Huntington Beach, Ca/ Perqs/ Carlos Guitarlos, Janniva Magness, The Blasters and friends
April 27 Hoboken, New Jersey/ Scotland Yard/ Gina Sicilia and friends
May 4 Austin, Tx/ Antones/ Rosie Flores, Margaret Moser, Susan Antone and friends
May 5 San Diego, Ca/ Humphreys/ Chet Cannon, Toni Price, Sue Palmer, Joey Harris, Anna Troy, Billy Watson and friends
May 13 Arlington, Va/ The Claredon Ballroom/
May 14 San Diego Ca/ The Casbah/ Joey Harris, Years around the sun, Mojo Nixon Steve Poltz and friends
May 15 Hartford Ct/ Black Eyed Sallys
6/21 Boulder, Colo/ Oskars Blues/ Jodie Woodward and friends
6/21 Dortmund, Germany/ FZW club/ Baums Bluesbenders, Tom Vietht, Limited Edition, Dirty Blues

Again get well Candye

Saturday, April 05, 2008

Hideaway's Visa Blues

One of my favorite blues performers, Eugene 'Hideaway' Bridges (pictured at the 2003 DC Blues Festival where he sat in with Larry Garner) was sent back to America since he did not have the special visa needed since he came to England from Australia through Singapore. A scheduled performance had to be canceled and he was in jail waiting for a flight to the USA. What a shame because he is a superlative musician and person.

Here is the link

Thanks to Chuck Nevitt who alerted me to this on a post on the Blues-L mailing list

Friday, April 04, 2008

Caretakers or Undertakers of the Blues

I was visiting my good friend Memphis Gold this afternoon and we talked about some of his upcoming appearances including the Tinner Hill Festival and the Columbia Pike Blues Festival, when his wife mentioned another DC area festival that essentially offered him $500 for a seven piece band while offering several times this amount to a touring white performer (and if the person is who i think it is, I think she is a fine performer). According the Memphis Gold's wife, the person from this festival took offense when challenged on the low amount they were willing to pay. Lets remember, Memphis Gold needs money, but certainly a gig has to pay enough to make it worth it to show up and perform. If it is true that Memphis Gold was expected to play for $500, and the touring act is getting several times that amount, well I can say there is no excuse for that. Why can't someone putting on a festival in Washington DC show enough respect that the folks who know something about the blues in Europe know.

In the context of telling me what happened, Memphis Gold's wife said that someone told her to the effect that Blacks may have been the originators but whites are now its caretakers. I initially misunderstood her and though it was the person from the festival that was trying to low-ball Memphis Gold, but that was not true. Still that comment probably reflects what a lot of folks think. The fact that there is plenty of blues still being played its originators who are doing quite a bit in preserving and extending the blues tradition. And these acts increasingly get ignored while the popularizers and imitators increasingly get many gigs and press. Those that ignore the originators and those playing the tradition, are not serving as caretakers of anything. rather they are acting like undertakers, but this music ain't ready to die.