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 My fans have always enjoyed my harmonica work. They enjoy it more than me. I've been playing harmonica for a long time but I've never taken it as a serious instrument. It's just always been something to accompany my guitar. I do enjoy playing harmonica and lately have been challenged to do more of it. So I decided to put together this case. It’s necessary to be a next level player.

 

I had the opportunity to participate in a harmonica Festival. I just never thought of myself as truly a serious harmonica player. Harmonica it's just something that I always had with me.

 

 Learning harmonica is not hard for me. It comes pretty natural, after all I've been doing it for a long time. Never thought about what I was doing.

 

 Sometimes people ask me about different harmonica players and I don't know what to say. I know of  their names. Sonny Boy Williams, I've heard the, James Cotton, I've heard the name but it's never studied them or studied their music it's just music that I have heard.

 

I did have an opportunity to work with a great harmonica player once named Jerry ( Boogie ) McCain. I didn't know at that time that I was actually working with one of the legends in harmonica music. Personally I think Jerry ( Boogie ) McCain was one of the best harmonica players to ever live and under-appreciated. Check out some of his music

 

I once got a call from a producer in the Muscle Shoals area to play on a record and I was surprised that the producer called me instead of Jerry McCain. I even asked the producer are you sure you want me instead of Jerry McCain and he responded’ “ yeah I need what you do on this record Jerry can't do what you do and you can't do what Jerry does.  That was a liberating moment for me and made me understand the difference. As long as I don't compare myself to anyone, it gives me the freedom to be myself and it'll help me to be able to keep playing music.

 

 When I listen to myself play harmonica I do have a style that's  different than many harmonica players. I don't know how to explain that difference other than I'm just being myself . Some of it comes from playing alone a lot with myself on guitar. Also have some funk in my background and some jazz in my background. I love both just as much as I do blues. It shows up in my music.  I can hear it in the Harmonica stuff.

 

 I'm sitting here now dreading adding to this harp collection. I need to add several more harmonicas because some of mine old are ones are going flat or the reeds are going dead. I recently discovered the Seydel brand and it's a great harmonica but they do cost a lot more. Like right now I'm having to spend nearly $600 just to bring this set up to date. I'll go ahead and bonus myself something I've always wanted, a really nice chromatic harmonica.

 

The reason I'm able to do some of these things now is because of crowdfunding. I've been moving in that direction for a couple of years slowly and beginning to understand the power that it can have. I don't have a record company. My fans chip in together to help me do a little better I really do look forward to giving them more and more. There’s Much More , Much More Blues to come !

 

 

Often think about the message I got from one of my fans. A young lady, she was telling me how much fun and enjoyment she got from reading my diary here on my website. It meant a lot to me to hear her say that. I was really moved by the thought that something I write here could make a difference if someone's life. May be  my own. I don't know. I just do it from time-to-time.

 

Today I was thinking about the young lady and wanting to do something just for her. She's a sweet little girl I met her on Periscope she came into my scope. She's been through some bad relationships up North with a boyfriend beating on her. I heard she moved down South on her own. Trying to make another life for herself. I know it was hard to leave family and go out on your own that way. Maybe she did have the blues. I wish I could do more for her and for others like her. So I'll start back creating these posts. Every day I'll try to do something. I never know what that might be.  

 

When you're raised like me to mind your own business sometimes It's tricky to turn around and let the world look into my psychic.  It's tricky to position myself so that people can take a look inside of me. Inside of me. Yeah I've never thought that could be something important inside of me. If there's anything inside of me that can help another they're more than welcome to it. So I'll do more. I'm saying that for that young lady and I'm also saying that you. And I'm also saying that to myself.  I would like to empty myself more, leave more stuff here in the world that I passed through. I'd like to leave more my experiences, as if it could be important to someone else. So today I wanted to make this post. I hope l that the young lady will see this and she'll know who I'm talking about. I want her to be strong I want her to keep moving on and I want to try to give her something to keep hanging on.  Have a good day.

 

Do you enjoy reading these posts ?

 

 

Rain today here in Huntsville Alabama. It's a good day to stay inside and practice on some harmonica stuff. I've been having a good time working with the harmonica. I am looking forward to the day when my band is able to free me up so that I can play more harmonica.

 

 The rain coming down on this old tin roof I just put on some backing tracks and play along. I'm going to try today to get in a good hours worth of practice. And of course I play each night for a few minutes in the Blues Room live stream on Periscope. How often do you practice your instrument ?

 

  

  Distractions are everywhere. Everywhere I turn someone is pulling for attention. Look over here at what I do, look over here at what they do, look over here what you did . I open the Blues Room every night by say there's a lot going on in the world. It's no joke. That really is a lot going on in the world. But most of it has absolutely nothing to do with myself.

 

 I had no idea that people would take Blues literally. Lots of the followers I have actually do have the Blues. I noticed some are extreme personalities. Lonely, bipolar, sick,  all types of people from all types of background, because of the type of Blues environment that I created they are buying into it. it’s not that I'm not willing to give in to their stories, but I have to focus my attention on getting through the broadcast and making it to the next one, which is always less than 24 hrs away. If I could build it over again I would build it all the same way.

 

  Clare Means is celebrating a hundred thousand followers and one hundred million hearts.  I can understand why. She’s a talented white woman. Being a white female or anything other than black male you could blaze attention and support in our society . I understand these things. I have to recommit myself daily to building this organization. And focus on what's realistic and what's not. From sea to shining sea, that's a lot going on, but most has nothing to do with me.

 

 

 Whistle Stop Festival attracted lots of people into downtown Huntsville tonight. Traffic was backed up for a long way as I was going into the city. I didn't know it was scheduled for for tonight. I had forgotten all about it.

   I'm going into downtown to play music on the square. I'm really excited that the City of Huntsville thought about me to invite me to come and play Blues down on the Square. I just wish they had told me about the Whistle Stop Festival so I could have left home earlier.

 

  “Autumn”, the new lady who did the booking was very helpful to me. She even helped me to unload my car and find a good parking spot right on in North side Square. They even provided a small stage right on the Square, I sat up next door to a couple of other vendors. There was room for a few people to sit.

 

 The people had a great time.  They clapped, danced, and had a lot of fun watching me. I love performing on the street, after all, I did that for about 6 years in the Bridge Street Town Center Mall. Since i started live streaming on Periscope I haven't done it as much. Periscope is sort of like street performing in some ways so I really don't miss it. But I do like being face-to-face with the people as much as possible.

 

  I'd like to thank the City of Huntsville for thinking of me and giving me a chance to come out and play. If I can ever do anything for them I don't mind. Huntsville is my hometown and they're doing the best they can to revive the old downtown district. Lots of fun thanks again.

 

2018 Hayward Russell City Blues Festival #19

 

  The West Coast Blues Society in Hayward, CA did a spectacular job presenting the 20l8 Hayward Russell City Blues Festival. I am so honored to have been a part of it. I left home from Huntsville, AL and headed out to Little Rock to meet up with the Biscuit family and from there flew back into Atlanta, and off to San Francisco. We had a great time and the weather was beautiful.

 

Flying over the desert was awesome to me. I looked out the window and saw those snow caps on top of the sand dunes and mountains. It was an awesome flying over the desert, I was so excited. I wanted to tell the pilot to stop and let me out so I can play in the sand for awhile. When we arrived in San Francisco the driver, Walter (also the President of the blues society) came right along to pick us up and took us across the bay out into beautiful Hayward, CA. The city is so clean I was amazed. Didn't see any paper on the ground.

 

Our set was only 30 minutes long and I hadBluesVIPMsBiscuithead aka Carla Robinson to play backup for me;the one woman Delta style band. I thought it would be a treat for them to see and it turned out just the way we had planned it. We performed true Delta Style Blues right there on the West Coast. I know I had lots of fun and I know she did too. The audience sang along with us and clap their hands, pat their feet and a few folks even danced to our Delta style Boogie. I got so many thank you and compliments and signed many autographs. They were even digging my attire for the show; white shirt, overalls and my Pig Skin Stetson Hat. 

 

A few attendees had printed pictures of me from the internet and wanted me to autograph them, they looked really nice.  It really made me feel good. I really enjoyed working in California and hopefully they'll have me back someday.

Hell Broke loose in the Periscope Blues Room this week . There was lots of activity both good and bad and much of it was caused by Dennis Ruley. If you have ever been into our Periscope Live stream then you  know Dennis Ruley . He probably was the first person that spoke to you as you entered . He is also the guy who clutters the screen with too many promos . When i first got the idea to launch a Blues room podcast he was the first to volunteer . I thought this was the perfect time to publish this draft. This version is incomplete, has no intro ,bumper or teases or inserts of any kind. Time didn't allow me to finish it . I just wanted to take the opportunity to share this part of the Ruley story. Gone Deep in the Blues room. Amazing

 

 

  I left home about midday Thursday headed to the Juke Joint Festival in Clarksdale, MS. As I was driving over the bridge in Decatur, AL I turned on the radio to listen to the weather forecast. It said a 50-50 chance of good weather so I hit highway 20, headed west toward Memphis, it's a straight shot from Decatur. By the time I got to the intersection of Hwy 72 at Muscle Shoals, AL I could feel the music.  I felt it was going to be a good day so I turned on my radio to some blues and got up to about 80 miles an hour and locked in the cruise control. When I got near Memphis; I took the bypass road 302 to Horn Lake, MS.  It doesn't take long to get to I-55 heading south; then I took the exit and drove south till I see the Tunica casino signs. Forty-five minutes later I was on Highway 61 South. This highway will take you straight into Clarksdale, MS.

 

  But I first took a detour over into Arkansas; crossing the Mighty Mississippi River to visit with my VIP MsBiscuithead and ask her to be my tour guide.  Marcus “Mookie” Cartwright and Carla Robinson will play before me on Juke Joint lineup. She was at the Delta Cultural Museum and agreed to let me tail her over to Clarksdale; so we gassed up and hit the road. It had been raining in Arkansas and Clarksdale when we arrived there was water standing on the streets in some places. The streets were still crowded with people and the rain was spotty.

 

  While walking around the festival I got a chance to see the monkeys riding the dogs, and a Petting Zoo (it was like a mini fair for the family). Then we came up on the Delta Blues Museum Main Stage next to the museum.  It's always a blast going into the museum, but didn't have the time so we walked on around back to the main street (Delta Ave.), where all the vendors were. There were a lot of musicians playing up and down the street.  I heard some fine blues music being played there and saw some really cool artist and folk artist.

 

  I’d like to thank Roger Stolle for allowing me to play the 2018 Juke Joint Festival and Carla Robinson for encouraging me to want to play this festival “she said it’s not about how much money you make, it’s a fun festival to be a part of.  She was right; it was “Big Fun”. This was the first time I’ve played the festival and I must say it is a granddaddy of all festivals of its kind. I thank Lil Biscuit and her sister-in-law (SNL Biscuit2), they drove in from Little Rock, AR; we had a blast. I played that Saturday at 2:00p.m., at the Cross Roads Heritage Center on Delta Ave. It was a nice big room with art on the walls. I played after   “Mookie“ Cartwright and Carla Robinson. They were a tough act to play behind; they had the house rocking. The soundman, was musician and artist Terry “Big T” Williams“, he was very helpful and professional. Not only that, he was tired from playing the night before. He said that he had played all night long the night before in front of a packed house. He was tired but the blues had to go on.

 

  I ran into Jeremy, like me a harmonica player. I met him last year; he was playing at the Helena Second Saturday Cherry Street Fair in Helena, AR (a summer event). He was playing with “Big T” Williams. I remember him from the very day he hooked up his mic. I love his style of playing. We shared a drink or two together just before my show started.  During set up for my show, my kick drum pad came apart inside, so I had to use the kick drum on stage. Big T quickly got me set right up and ran sound. Jeremy had never heard me play and said he enjoyed listening to me, I was honored. He handed me a pen and asked me to autograph his harp case. Then some folks in the audience came up to me wanting their photograph made with the AlabamaBluesMan.

 

  We were all socializing and lying and rubbing blues elbows when “BOOM” the power went out. So everyone was walking around gawking till the power came back on. The biscuit girls wound up going down through an alley. I asked them where they were going? they scream back; ”to the old Clarksdale Bank Building”.  So here we go over to this old bank to hear Iretta and Johnny B. Sanders. They always do a great Delta Style Blues show. It was really interesting this time because they didn't have electricity. All they had was a tambourine, hand clapping and foot stomping. It was Blues at its best, raw and uncut. The room was full of people waiting for the power to come back on. But no one noticed after a while. The couple gave the room its own power. I guess that’s why they call it the Juke Joint Festival. I’m already looking toward 2019 Juke Joint Festival, it’s a “half blues and half music” festival right in the heart of downtown Clarksdale, MS.

 

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