The ICBC’s Blues In The Schools program was at Lee School Tuesday, January 23, with presenter Robert Sampson. Once a month the teachers at Lee School reward the student body for their attentiveness, behavior, and class performance. Music teacher Mary Von Liski decided the reward would be with a musical performance by 2018 International Blues Challenge finalist Robert “Lefty Preacher” Sampson! A very special ‘Thanks’ to Mrs. Von Liski and the Lee School Administrators and Staff for the monetary donation to the Illinois Central Blues Club.
Robert “Lefty Preacher” Sampson, representing the Illinois Central Blues Club, advanced to the Solo/Duo Finals in The Blues Foundations International Blues Challenge held January 16 – 20, 2018 on Beale St. in Memphis, TN. The International Blues Challenge represents the worldwide search for those Blues Bands and Solo/Duo Blues Acts ready to perform on the international stage, yet just needing that extra big break. Each Affiliate of The Blues Foundation has the right to send a band and a solo/duo act to represent its organization at the IBC and Robert came out on top of the ICBC’s “Road to Memphis” Challenge held during the 2017 Old Capitol Blues & BBQ. Congratulations Robert from all of us at the Illinois Central Blues Club.
The November 13 ‘Blue Monday at The Alamo’ Standing Room Only crowd witnessed an All-Out Throw Down of Rockin’ Blues from Jim Suhler and Monkey Beat! The enthusiastic audience were packed into The Alamo 45 minutes before showtime and Jim Suhler certainly didn’t disappoint. The band showed early on why they are favorites from Coast to Coast and Europe with selections from their “Tijuana Bible” and “Panther Burn” albums. Jim Suhler and Monkey Beat are Jim Suhler (guitar & vocals), Patrick Smith (bass), Shawn Phares (keyboards & backing vocals) and Beau Chadwell (drums). The Band blew the roof off with their rendition of Deep Purple’s Hush and closed out a truly wonderful night of music with Everybody Must Get Stoned by Bob Dylan! Check ’em out if you ever get the chance.
Reverend Raven & the Chain Smokin’ Alter Boys brought Westside Andy to the November 6 Blue Monday at The Alamo. The Chain Smokin’ Alter Boys are P.T. Pederson on bass and Craig Panosh on the drum throne. Reverend Raven played the Blues all night long featuring sons from his CD’s ‘Slow Burn’, ‘Live at Blues On Grand’, ‘Big Bee’ and ‘Live at Big Bull’. Jeff Chapman of the Brother Jefferson Band and Kyle Yardley of the Kyle Yardley Blues Band were in the house and sat in for a few songs with The Chain Smokpn’ Alter Boys during both sets. Be sure you check this band out anytime you get the chance.
The Election of Illinois Central Blue Club Board for 2017-2018 is Final. The current Board of Directors is as follows: Dan Bringman, Michael Goza, Greg Hackett, Dave Lumsden, Will Sternitzke and Clarence Stowe. The ICBC Officers as elected by the current Board are Michael Rapier – President, Don Hudson – Vice-President, Jon Coss – Secretary and Cindi Goza – Treasure. Board members who decided to retire from the Board this year are James Armstrong, Mark Audi, Ed Selinger and Janet Trader. The Board meets on the 2nd Monday of each Month at Joe Galllina’s Pizza & Restaurant, 432 East Monroe St., in Downtown Springfield, IL. at 7:00 PM and is open to any Illinois Central Blues Club member in good standing.
We are saddened by the news that our friend Alex Borisov passed away early on Oct. 2, 2017. Everyone that knew Alex comment on how kind and generous he was. Alex was a member of the ICBC since the beginning of the club, he was a member of the Cicero Slim and the World War III Blues Band, a regular in the local blues scene, and he stayed involved with the Club, always volunteering to assist as a judge at the annual blues challenge. Alex was a kind soul, and he will be missed by all that knew him.
On August 18, 2017, Michael Townsend, a person instrumental in the history of the Springfield Blues Community, passed away. We will be sharing more about Michael’s life in the near future. Services will be on August 28th at Sacred Heart Church, in Springfield, IL. Visitation is at 11am, Mass is at Noon, with a reception/luncheon afterwards. Michael’s daughter Laura Townsend, told me her father loved to have people over to visit and to eat, and they invite members of the ICBC that knew her father to come by. http://www.legacy.com/obituaries/sjr/obituary.aspx?n=michael-p-townsend&pid=186452878&fhid=8352
Hello and thank you to all the members of the Illinois Central Blues Club for your commitment to this Club. Your love and passion for the blues is why the Club is here and why it has been active in the mission of preserving this great art form for so long. From Blue Monday to Blues in the Schools and everything in between, the committed Club members have been doing the necessary work to keep the Club on track for nearly 31 years.
In addition to doing the hard work, The Club also requires financial resources to keep presenting great music 52 weeks a year. Membership dues and the Blue Monday cover charges are essential but aren’t always enough on their own to cover the weekly cost of putting on Blue Monday, James Armstrong Presents, Blues in the Schools and our other fine programs.
Right now, as we approach summer, it’s that time of the year when our coffers start getting painfully low, we would like to invite charitable givers to consider donating to the Illinois Central Blues Club. A donation will help us to do our work in preserving the blues and will help you to reduce your annual tax burden. No donation amount is too small or too large.
Your donation check can be sent to:
Illinois Central Blues Club
P.O. Box 603
Springfield, Illinois 62705
The ICBC will be good stewards of your contribution as we continue doing the work that our founders started doing back in 1986. Thank you and we’ll see you out enjoying the blues.
It was Boogie Woogie, Back Alley, Down Home Blues ALL NIGHT when Chris Ruest, Gene Taylor and Derek Bonn brought their Soulful Sound to the April 24 Blue Monday at The Alamo. Those attending who had witnessed Chris & Gene play Blue Monday in July 2016 knew what to expect and the first timers were Blown Away by this true professional trio of musicians. Every song was met with thunderous applause and dancing everywhere! Stop in The Alamo for Blue Monday or hear about it from your Friends!
Roger “Hurricane” Wilson & the Hurricane Homeboys came up from Georgia and stopped in Springfield, IL. to play the April 10 BLUE MONDAY at The Alamo. If you like guitar driven blues rock, fluid and intricate finger style guitar picking, and emotional songwriting, you were at the right place. With over forty years of teaching guitar lessons to beginners and advanced players alike, along with over twenty CD’s on the market, Roger “Hurricane” Wilson has made his own mark on the music world. The legendary Les Paul once said about Roger, “This guy plays some great blues.” With over a million miles under his belt, and having shared the stage with such notable artists as B.B. King, Buddy Guy, Hubert Sumlin, Willie “Big Eyes” Smith, Jorma Kaukonen, Charlie Musselwhite, Roger showed the BLUE MONDAY crowd what all those gigs are about!
Chicago Blues Hall of Fame inductee Joe Moss showed the BLUE MONDAY at The Alamo crowd precisely why he was accorded that honor. The Joe Moss Band combines many styles and influences. Rock, Blues, Funk, Jazz, Soul, R&B and Jam. Based in Blues and expanding outward the bands Live shows can run the gamut from extended jams to one man, a guitar and his voice and the April 3rd show was no exception. In 1992, Joe toured Spain with Buddy Scott and also recorded with him on Scott’s Bad Avenue CD, as well. Joe very quickly became an in-demand sideman with many of Chicago’s hardest working bands, playing guitar on the bandstand for Zora Young, Li’l Smokey Smothers, Syl Johnson, Lefty Dizz, Magic Slim, A.C. Reed, Billy Branch and Little Mack Simmons, among many others. Tours with these artists brought Joe exposure outside of the U.S. in Canada, Turkey, Switzerland, Holland, Belgium, France and Germany and he has soared ever since.
Thanks to all who came out to our 31st Birthday Party and making it a HUGE Success! Back Pack Jones opened up the ‘Evening of Celebration’ leaving No Doubt why they have been chosen to participate in the International Blue Challenge two of the past four years. They had the crowd simmering and ready for Toronzo Cannon who put the Icing on the Birthday Cake! After the 1st ‘Scorching Set’ Toronzo took a short break before a ‘Blistering’ culmination of a GREAT night! To have the Knights of Columbus Columbia Hall filled is a testament to the hard work and countless hours of the Illinois Central Blues Club’s Members, Board Members and Volunteers & in “Keeping The Blues Alive”! A Special Thank You to Taco Gringo for their annual support of the ICBC and our Birthday Party. Plans are in the works to celebrate 32 Years of the ICBC in March of 2018. We look forward to seeing you throughout 2017 at our weekly Blue Monday’s at The Alamo, the James Armstrong Presents at The Alamo on the 1st & 3rd Thursdays of each Month, the Old Capitol Blues & BBQ August 25th & 26th and around central Illinois “Supporting the Blues”. Again…Thank You all for your support!
The last Blue Monday at The Alamo of February 2017 found The Jeff Jensen Band simply OWNING North 5th Street in Downtown Springfield. Jeff Jensen, guitar & vocals, Bill Ruffino, bass and David Green on drums form one of a handful of bands whose phenomenal musicianship is matched by their extraordinary showmanship. From the bands own compositions to Bob Dylan, Tom Waits, Willie Dixon and a little Muddy Waters thrown in, they soared to extreme musical heights! On this evening, the appreciative capacity crowd was treated to a little something nostalgic as Mr. Brandon Santini joined in with his former mates for several songs offering a glimpse of 2017’s Santini / Jensen Project coming to a Festival near you! Get out and support ‘Live Music’ and be sure to stop in The Alamo for Blue Monday’s because you never know who’ll show up with the scheduled band. Thanks to Kurt Foor & Friends Of The Blues for the photo.
It seems as though throughout the year there are certain Blue Mondays at The Alamo that stand out a little more then others and last night, January 30, with the Slam Allen Band was one of those nights! Slam made the entire evening feel as though he and his band were in your Living Room playing for you while you were comfortable in your favorite recliner. Slam immediately showed his prowess with the Blues and as the night of great music reached its pinnacle The Alamo audience had been schooled in just how diverse Slam Allen is! From his own songs through Otis Redding, Jimi Hendrix, David Ruffin, Prince and possibly the finest rendition of “I’d Rather Go Blind” this side of Etta James, Slam showed how it should be done. Hopefully we will have the opportunity have the Slam Allen Band host Blue Monday at The Alamo in the future.
The Illinois Central Blues Club would like to thank everyone that made the Back Pack Jones “Road To Memphis” Fundraiser a HUGE success. The Alamo surpassed SRO as it was “Breathing Room Only” last night! Thank you Barry and your GREAT Staff at The Alamo for your endless support! A BIG Thank You to all the Fans of the Blues for coming out last night! Thanks to the ICBC Members for their tireless efforts in supporting, nurturing and promoting the effort of “Keeping the Blues ALIVE”! Thank you all for making the Illinois Central Blues Club one of the FINEST Blues Societies in the World! Have a fantastic time in Memphis, TN.!
The Illinois Central Blues Club is very happy to announce that Tom Holland will be conducting a “Blues In The Schools” at Blessed Sacrament School, 748 W. Laurel St., Springfield, IL., at 2:00 PM on November 14. Tom Holland & the Shuffle Kings have been garnering praise all over the world for the last 19 years. They play regularly in and around the Chicago area, as well as clubs and festivals all over the world.
Be sure to check out our Upcoming Events tab to see all of the Member Band gigs. Support Live Blues Music and the Club’s/Venue’s that support the Blues by booking acts!!!!
When you are at Blue Monday don’t forget our weekly 50/50 drawing!