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2013 Blues Fest – Saturday, July 6: Tent PDF Print E-mail
Mississippi Valley Blues Festival
Written by Administrator   
Thursday, 27 June 2013 05:48

Detroit Larry Davison & Chris Avey, 4 p.m.

Detroit Larry Davison and Chris Avey are both veteran blues musicians on the Quad Cities scene. They are both stellar performers – Larry on harp and Chris on guitar and vocals. Together, their acoustic act sounds like Maxwell Street transported to your front porch.

Larry is acknowledged by local listeners – including other harp players – as the best harmonica player in town. He’s been a vital part of many bands, including the Ellis Kell Band and John Resch & the Detroit Blues. And he took the stage in Memphis as part of the Avey Brothers Band when they reached the finals of the Blues Foundation’s International Blues Challenge in 2010. (They were the only real blues band in the finals, but the judges were after something else.)

You’ll be seeing a lot of Chris Avey at the 2013 blues fest. Besides this acoustic set with Larry, Chris heads the Chris Avey Band (finalists in the Mississippi Valley Blues Challenge), and the Avey Brothers are the host band for the 2013 after-fest showcase.

2013 Blues Fest – Workshop and BlueSKool Performers PDF Print E-mail
Mississippi Valley Blues Festival
Written by Administrator   
Thursday, 27 June 2013 05:47

David Horwitz (blues photography workshop)
Friday July 5, 2:30 pm.

Photographer and educator David Horwitz of Tucson, Arizona, has been traveling to clubs and festivals for decades in search of great blues music for his ears and visual images to capture on film. Winner of the 1999 Blues Foundation’s Keeping the Blues Alive Award for Photography, David has spent more than 25 years capturing moments of the blues masters. His works have appeared in countless publications. In 2011, he was inducted into the Arizona Blues Hall of Fame. This is his 26th year of shooting the Mississippi Valley Blues Festival, and the free photo exhibit near the workshops will showcase David’s work.

Photos from the Goddamn Gallows Concert, June 20 at RIBCO PDF Print E-mail
Feature Stories
Written by Matt Erickson   
Tuesday, 25 June 2013 09:15

Photos from the Goddamn Gallows concert at RIBCO on June 20, 2013, with opener Lou Shields. For more work by Matt Erickson, visit

The Goddamn Gallows:

Photo by Matt Erickson,

Photos from the John C. Reilly & Friends Concert, June 21 at Codfish Hollow Barn PDF Print E-mail
Feature Stories
Written by Roberta Osmers and Matt Erickson   
Monday, 24 June 2013 12:55

Photos from the John C. Reilly & Friends concert June 21 at the Codfish Hollow Barn in Maquoketa, Iowa, with opener Andru Bemis.

For more work by Matt Erickson, visit For more from Roberta Osmers on the Quad Cities music scene, visit

John C. Reilly & Friends

Photo by Roberta Osmers,

A Steady Diet of Curveballs: Portland Cello Project, June 27 at the Redstone Room PDF Print E-mail
Feature Stories
Written by Jeff Ignatius   
Thursday, 20 June 2013 07:13

The Portland Cello Project. Photo by Tarina Westlund.

For its June 27 performance at the Redstone Room, the Portland Cello Project will be featuring the music of Beck (Hanson), (Dave) Brubeck, and (Johann Sebastian) Bach. Alliteration aside, the grouping of a contemporary rock artist, a jazz icon, and a Baroque composer is relatively natural for an ensemble known for aggressively omnivorous appetites.

“It really started with the Beck,” said Doug Jenkins, the Portland Cello Project’s artistic director, in a recent phone interview. “When we heard last August that he was going to put out an album of sheet music rather than actually recording an album, we got really excited, because it just seemed like it was right up our alley – to grab that and play with it and adapt it to our larger orchestral ensemble. And so we booked the show immediately. ... It was coming out December 7, so we booked the shows on December 13 [and] 14 – even having no idea what we were going to get. ... We got the music, and we basically camped out 24/7 to learn all 20 songs and get them all ready to go for the performances. ... They’re wonderful songs. ... We recorded them right away, too, a week later, and then put out that CD.

“That was a month or two after Dave Brubeck passed away. [He actually died December 5.] We did kind of a tribute to Dave Brubeck at the same time. And Brubeck and Beck, they actually went together really well. The kind of old-timey feel of the Beck songs from the Song Reader, and of course Brubeck is just wonderful, timeless stuff. ... And then the Bach just seemed like, as a cellist, a logical thing to throw onto it.”

Brubeck channeled Bach in his “Brandenburg Gate,” and one instrumental piece from Song Reader has a classical vibe, Jenkins said. So “there’s already this reaching among the composers who obviously had no idea what we were ever going to do with it. We can find a lot of middle ground, a lot of places to connect things together.”

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