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Blues Fest at East Side Club: Another troubled festival?

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Blues Fest at East Side Club: Another troubled festival?

Postby Dipper » Thu Sep 24, 2009 9:18 am

I'm wondering if anyone caught that blues lineup they had the East Side Club last weekend. I stopped by to peek through the fence. It seemed a nice enough venue, but lightly attended--so bad that later I heard the promoter was trying to recoup his losses by charging people $5 to park in the club's parking lot. This happen to anyone?
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Re: Blues Fest at East Side Club: Another troubled festival?

Postby wack wack » Thu Sep 24, 2009 10:39 am

Maybe the problem was that the only real blues band in town last weekend was Li'l Ed at the Willy Street Fair.

Fat white boys in Wisconsin seriously need to stop calling Texas rock "blues."
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Re: Blues Fest at East Side Club: Another troubled festival?

Postby Nate535 » Wed Sep 30, 2009 8:48 pm

HA! Right on the money. I wish it did have some actual texas influence though...then you'd at least get to hear some Albert King and Albert Collins influence. They should just call it "A Tribute to SRV". Seriously, how many people can you have on the bill that are watered down versions of Stevie? I guess I'm not surprised though, I once heard the guy who organizes the thing tell a guy that Joel Pingitore was the best guitarist around.



wack wack wrote:Maybe the problem was that the only real blues band in town last weekend was Li'l Ed at the Willy Street Fair.

Fat white boys in Wisconsin seriously need to stop calling Texas rock "blues."
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Re: Blues Fest at East Side Club: Another troubled festival?

Postby rabble » Thu Oct 01, 2009 1:46 pm

wack wack wrote:Maybe the problem was that the only real blues band in town last weekend was Li'l Ed at the Willy Street Fair.

Fat white boys in Wisconsin seriously need to stop calling Texas rock "blues."

Speaking as someone who likes rock n roll more than Blues, I understand where you come from. You could hear that music plain as day, down to each guitar note, on the shore of Lake View park out by the Yahara.

I really liked it and I promptly hopped on my bike and rode out to listen, but my first thought was "This is what the Blues is now? I didn't know it had become so similar to good ol rock n roll."

I also wanted to know which way the stage was pointing. Turned out it was facing away from the lake but it was right on the shore and didn't have a back wall.
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Re: Blues Fest at East Side Club: Another troubled festival?

Postby Henry Vilas » Thu Oct 01, 2009 3:59 pm

rabble wrote:... but my first thought was "This is what the Blues is now? I didn't know it had become so similar to good ol rock n roll."

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C5QorAQ5 ... re=related
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Re: Blues Fest at East Side Club: Another troubled festival?

Postby Mr. Williams » Tue Oct 06, 2009 2:46 pm

I had to chime in on this thread as I was one of the performers at this festival. When I signed on with Geoff he never once mentioned to me that it was a blues festival. It has always been called a "Music" fest. And the "B" in BAM was for "Belleville" not Blues. I most certainly agree that this wasn't a "Chicago blues" fest and I think he'd agree as well.

The turnout wasn't as good as he was hoping for, that i'm sure of. It was a great location and the people I spoke with had a good time. I personally loved the line up. To each there own I suppose. It was also a jam packed music weekend in Madison with the Forward Fest/Willy St. going on. Tough to beat in this town.

I still find it hilarious that people argue what "blues" is still. In all my travels and touring the past few years, each and every town has a different idea of it. People in Madison favor the Chicago blues style and as you go towards Texas they favor calling SRV stuff as "blues." In New Orleans they have a whole different take on "real" blues. It's a lost cause.

Joel is a good friend of mine and he'd be the last one to tell you he's the "greatest." Terms like that are used for promo and all musicians are guilty of using phrases like that. I also think all the bands at that festival wouldn't call themselves "straight up blues" either. I personally know my band isn't straight up blues, and I know Joel thinks the same way. We love what we play and we aren't trying to be anyone other then ourselves. Good music is always good music.

And when are people going realize that you don't need to be a black man from the Delta to play the blues or feel the blues. If you actually believe that then you'll never understand the music and you should just move on to what you dig and support your favorite bands, we all need it.
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Re: Blues Fest at East Side Club: Another troubled festival?

Postby Nate535 » Tue Oct 06, 2009 5:13 pm

I guess the term "American Music fest" is a little misleading.

I don't know Joel at all but he seems like a pretty down to earth guy that loves playing guitar. I wasn't trying to take a shot at him at all, he's a great player who does what he does really well. I was only saying that I've heard Geoff specifically tell a guy at a jam that he "had" to get up and play with Joel because he was the "best" guitarist around. I only mentioned it as a explanation for why he put together a festival with bands that have a specific sound. You can't really blame a guy for booking the bands he likes to listen to.

Aaron, I think we should reproduce the classic album SHOWDOWN! with Albert Collins, Robert Cray, and Johnny Copeland...you know...accept with white guys.



Mr. Williams wrote:I had to chime in on this thread as I was one of the performers at this festival. When I signed on with Geoff he never once mentioned to me that it was a blues festival. It has always been called a "Music" fest. And the "B" in BAM was for "Belleville" not Blues. I most certainly agree that this wasn't a "Chicago blues" fest and I think he'd agree as well.

The turnout wasn't as good as he was hoping for, that i'm sure of. It was a great location and the people I spoke with had a good time. I personally loved the line up. To each there own I suppose. It was also a jam packed music weekend in Madison with the Forward Fest/Willy St. going on. Tough to beat in this town.

I still find it hilarious that people argue what "blues" is still. In all my travels and touring the past few years, each and every town has a different idea of it. People in Madison favor the Chicago blues style and as you go towards Texas they favor calling SRV stuff as "blues." In New Orleans they have a whole different take on "real" blues. It's a lost cause.

Joel is a good friend of mine and he'd be the last one to tell you he's the "greatest." Terms like that are used for promo and all musicians are guilty of using phrases like that. I also think all the bands at that festival wouldn't call themselves "straight up blues" either. I personally know my band isn't straight up blues, and I know Joel thinks the same way. We love what we play and we aren't trying to be anyone other then ourselves. Good music is always good music.

And when are people going realize that you don't need to be a black man from the Delta to play the blues or feel the blues. If you actually believe that then you'll never understand the music and you should just move on to what you dig and support your favorite bands, we all need it.
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Re: Blues Fest at East Side Club: Another troubled festival?

Postby wack wack » Tue Oct 06, 2009 6:30 pm

Mr. Williams wrote:And when are people going realize that you don't need to be a black man from the Delta to play the blues or feel the blues. If you actually believe that then you'll never understand the music and you should just move on to what you dig and support your favorite bands, we all need it.


When are middle-aged white guys going to realize that there's far more to the blues than twelve bars and pentatonic minor wanking? That SRV was the end and not the beginning? That a strat and a bowling shirt do not make a bluesman? Or an archtop and fedora, for that matter?

Guess what: some people can DEEPLY understand the blues and still not like the crap that claims to be blues today.
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Re: Blues Fest at East Side Club: Another troubled festival?

Postby Nick Berigan » Wed Oct 07, 2009 8:52 am

"...some people can DEEPLY understand..."

It's just my opinion that we are all born in positions of non-authenticity and then we go from there. Out a ways we each come to our own "DEEP understandings" and then our individualities allow us to live in those frameworks. Fortunately, no one can tell one of us to squeeze into the frameworks of another (though there are forces that continue to try for the sake of commerce or righteousness - see below.)

The bottom line is that you are in your own head. Good luck with it.

For myself, I am still trying to figure out the framework that encompasses the "R" side of "RNB". I really DON'T have a framework that give me the blues, having not been "born in chicago" (remind me if Paul Butterfield wore a fedora or was overweight, please) or the delta. For me, no one has yet named that end of the spectrum. And don't try "funk" on me as there are WAY too many examples of that that are not so focused on the rhythmic side of the spectrum. In my framework, at least, you can't put Parliament in the same bag as Strokeland. Same for R-n-R, I can't put Buddy Holly next to Tower of Power (though Edgar Winter, speaking of "white" guys" is in between somewhere.)

(And while you are at it, could you please categorize Robert Walter? That's REALLY been bugging me lately.)

Aren't labels fun? As soon as I have one, I can use it to market myself. In fact, I hereby proclaim the new genre of "the R side of r-n-b" for which I am uniquely qualified given that my initials of my real name are RNB. All who desire entry must submit to me. Please form a line at the checkout register or confessional whichever suits your case of need or guilt.

(r)nb
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Re: Blues Fest at East Side Club: Another troubled festival?

Postby Silas » Wed Oct 07, 2009 9:46 am

Nick Berigan wrote:For myself, I am still trying to figure out the framework that encompasses the "R" side of "RNB".


It's a specific set of chord changes based on "I Got Rhythm". Nothing really to do with a beat. Just like the B side is based on a chord sequence I-IV-V that can be played with all kinds of beats.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rhythm_changes

Back in the day you needed to know those 2 sets of changes because so many songs are built off of 'em.

Yeah at this point labels can be kinda stupid....mostly when people try and call something it's not. SRV wasn't just blues, syncopation doesn't equal funk and adding a fiddle or pedal steel to Journey doesn't make it country. Doesn't make any of those things bad...I love SRV for instance...but it does tend to piss off fans of anything when something is labeled wrong.
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Re: Blues Fest at East Side Club: Another troubled festival?

Postby wack wack » Wed Oct 07, 2009 10:53 am

Yes, Paul Butterfield occasionally wore a fedora. I have a picture of him in one. To think that this commonality somehow legitimizes the "bluesman" status of a 50 year-old Insurance exec from Verona is silly.

My comments on the blues were inspired by the OP's reference to this as a "blues lineup." Seeing as it was not a "blues" fest, my expectations were inappropriate. My opinions still stand.

Mr. Williams, I mean no disrespect, and I also would never think to call your band a blues band. That's some original rock & roll right there.

There is a whole generation now that really believes that "biker rock" is the blues. Twelve bars, super hi-gain guitars, loud rock & roll drums and looooong solos. No wry humor, no dynamics, no uplift, nothing but pure "badass attitude." That's not the blues. There's a subtlety to "real" blues that makes it so affecting, no matter where it's from.

Unfortunately the blues today is largely driven by guitarists, most of whom believe whole-heartedly in the "bigger, better, faster, more!" mantra. If it's faster then it's new! No, it's just faster.

I guess I feel like the old folks did when I was growing up and thought Def Leppard defined rock & roll. "What?! This isn't rock & roll, this is just noise! Got listen to some Beatles!"

So, yeah... stay off my lawn!
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Re: Blues Fest at East Side Club: Another troubled festival?

Postby Mr. Williams » Wed Oct 07, 2009 12:36 pm

Good point WackWack. I agree with you, people can understand a genre of music and not like the current style/label or what have you. I won't assume to know what you're thinking but I do agree with you on that. I felt no disrespect at all my friend. And thanks for checking out our tunes. It's funny, my band still gets lumped in with all the blues band out there by the "powers that be" and thats when we get in trouble. We are lucky enough to be invited to blues fests as well as music fest. At blues fest there are always a handful of people that don't like us because we aren't "blues" enough and when we play a music fest there are fans that don't like us because they don't like "blues" and we ARE blues to them. You just can't win! But in the end it doesn't matter what people call us, my mantra has always been -like what you like and support it. It never hurts my feelings if some one doesn't dig my tunes.

Nate, i know you weren't harping on Joel. You're one of the good guys in Madtown, i've never heard you bad mouth anyone. I'm with you I prefer to use favorite rather then greatest. Showdown, what an album...can I be Johnny Copeland!

I wish I knew how to stroke a guitar like BB and play one note and get every ounce of feeling out of it. But that ain't my style, there are many others out there that can do the ol school shuffle and I would never pretend to be one of them. I think thats what pisses me off the most out on the scene today, when some cat THINKS he knows what it is to be "blues" and ACTS the part, or for that matter any style of music, you've got to be sincere and genuine. If you got that i'm cool with you.

I still stand by the festival. Geoff has been nothing but stellar to us and I wish he had a better turnout that afternoon. Tough weekend though.
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