Blues On The Range
June 9-11, 2000
Iron World, Chisholm, MN
Short bio text for the Brochure:
Born in Oklahoma, Shawn Pittman cut his blues eye-teeth on the highly competitive blues stages of Dallas, Texas. His intensity has been compared to a youthful Buddy Guy as he plays with the energy rush of a young rock ‘n’ roller, and the depth and soulfulness of a seasoned bluesman. His guitar leads spit and hiss like grease on a hot skillet and his gripping, rhythmic chording has the propulsiveness of a skilled drummer. Shawn Pittman is definitely one of the most dynamic young blues performers on stage today.
Called "the crown prince of Zydeco," C.J. Chenier is carrying on the great Zydeco tradition of his legendary father Clifton Chenier. His debut album on Alligator Records was called Too Much Fun, and that is exactly what you will be experiencing when you listen to his Red Hot Louisiana Band. Considered to be one of the best Zydeco bands today, C.J. Chenier’s music grooves from the traditional zydeco of his father right up to modern funk, all the while infused with the urgency and energy of rock and roll.
One of the new breed of exciting young blues performers, Corey Harris has not only embraced the traditional acoustic blues guitar style but has added a few twists of his own. Not satisfied with just reproducing the traditional music, Harris has pushed the boundaries of this form, adding the music and rhythms of Africa, the Caribbean and New Orleans jazz to create a distinct and extremely entertaining blues style.
20 year old sensation Sean Costello is a riveting, world-class guitarist who first gained national recognition as lead guitarist with Susan Tedeschi. Costello’s passionate devotion to, and thorough knowledge of most of the classic blues styles of the 20th Century allows him to play just about any style of blues with a remarkable maturity and excellence that astounds his audiences. His exceptional guitar playing and gripping vocals sets him apart as one of the better young bluesmen playing today.
Big Jack Johnson
A true master of contemporary Delta blues, Big Jack Johnson is one of the best blues guitarists ever to come out of Clarksdale, Mississippi where he still lives today. An incredibly gifted and intense guitarist and vocalist, Johnson plays electric slide with the dirty, greasy feel of Elmore James and shouts verses that sound as old as the Delta soil he was born on. This is electric Delta blues at its very best.
One of the few younger Zydeco players who still writes and sings some of her own material in Creole French, 29 year old Rosie Ledet, affectionately know as the Zydeco Sweetheart, is at the forefront of today’s traditional Zydeco music scene. Her warm stage presence combined with her highly infectious dance rhythms, makes Ledet irresistible to audiences. Bring along your dancing shoes because you will find it hard to stay in your seat.
Big John Dickerson
One of the most engaging R&B entertainers in Minnesota, Big John Dickerson’s charming stage personality, gritty vocals and good time antics has won over audiences around the world. In addition to Big John on vocals, Blue Chamber is composed of a group of "all star" musicians led by Iron Ranger Paul Mayasich on lead guitar. Get ready as Blue Chamber transforms the Blues On The Range stage into their own roadhouse with a no-holds-barred blues and R&B assault
One of today’s most innovative Zydeco performers, Terrance Simien pushes the envelope of Zydeco music to new and exciting levels. He readily infuses his traditional Louisiana rhythms with elements of R&B, funk, gospel and reggae. The Louisiana native, who likes to play barefoot, is regarded as one of Zydeco’s most soulful vocalists and fiercest accordionists. Once you hear him play you will want to get up and dance, make your reservations for Mardi Gras, eat some red beans and rice, and generally get into that Louisiana party spirit.
Bob Bingham & Gordon Thorne
An auspicious teaming of these two solo acoustic blues performers at the 1996 Blues On The Range festival has led to a successful duo act of acoustic delta and ragtime blues. Combining their mutual passion for playing country blues, Bob Bingham and Gordon Thorne offer their audiences a fresh approach to a classic blues form and remain one of the most talented acoustic blues duos in the Upper Midwest.
Paul Metsa & Bob Wilson
Iron Ranger, Paul Metsa’s performance at The Blues On The Range festival has become an eagerly awaited annual event. Described as "one of the finest singer-songwriters in Minnesota," Paul has been performing his acoustic folk/blues since 1984. In 1997 Paul teamed up with harmonica ace Bob Wilson who has been playing blues harp since he first heard Paul Butterfield at the age of 11. This dynamic guitar/harp duo always entertains with their spirited interpretations of classic and original acoustic music.
The Tom Hunter Band
Recognized as one of the most exciting piano players on the blues circuit, Tom Hunter’s keyboard prowess is absolutely amazing. Joined by seasoned professionals whose playing has been honed to a fine edge from years of touring, Tom’s stellar band covers the musical spectrum from the smoky jazz sounds of Charles Brown, to gut-bucket Chicago blues, to the sharp edge of Albert Collins.