Monthly Archives: March 2016

Moonshine & Mojo Hands – Blues Reality Show Coming In April

World’s First Blues Music Reality Show To Launch in April

Moonshine & Mojo Hands reunites creators of award-winning documentaries M for Mississippi and We Juke Up in Here

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(CLARKSDALE, MS) – The long-awaited premiere of the world’s first blues music reality show will take place this spring. The first episode of Moonshine & Mojo Hands: The Mississippi Blues Series will begin streaming online on Thursday, April 21 with additional episodes to debut each week. The entire 10-episode series will stream exclusively online at www.moonshineandmojohands.com.

The web series was created by Roger Stolle and Jeff Konkel, who previously teamed up on the award-winning blues documentaries M for Mississippi: A Road Trip Through the Birthplace of the Blues and We Juke Up in Here: Mississippi’s Juke Joint Culture at the Crossroads.

For the new project, the duo traveled Mississippi’s back roads in search of juke joints, house parties, barbecue, soul food, folk artists, moonshiners and – of course – the men who keep the uniquely American music form of the blues alive in the land of its birth. The show will feature a wide range of musicians both celebrated and obscure. Featured artists include James “Super Chikan” Johnson, Leo Bud Welch, Jimbo Mathus, Robert “Bilbo” Walker, Mark “Muleman” Massey, Terry “Harmonica” Bean, Lucious Spiller, Louis “Gearshifter” Youngblood and many more.

“There’s no denying that many of the towering figures in traditional blues have passed on in recent years, but there are still incredible blues musicians living and working in Mississippi if you know where to look,” Konkel said. “And we know where to look.”

Each episode of Moonshine & Mojo Hands will take viewers on a wild ride through the Mississippi Delta and Hill Country to meet the region’s most fascinating characters in truly unforgettable settings.

“There’s truly no place else on Earth quite like Mississippi,” Stolle said. “We can’t wait to introduce viewers to all of the great music, food, culture and characters that the state has to offer.”

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The series reunites Stolle and Konkel with Damien Blaylock and Lou Bopp, both of whom figured prominently in the duo’s earlier film projects. Blaylock, who served as cinematographer and editor for both M for Mississippi and We Juke Up in Here, is serving as chief editor for the new series. Bopp is reprising his role behind the camera from We Juke Up in Here.

The web series also features cinematography by Jon Michael Ryan of Tangent Mind, Inc., audio engineering by Fred Early, editing support from Jeff Brierly, graphic design support from Joey Grisham and website support from Anne Willis.

The show was made possible through support from Coahoma County Tourism, The Lofts at the Fime & Dime, Travel for Fans, Yazoo Pass Espresso Bar, Bistro & Bakery and the generous contributions of hundreds of Kickstarter supporters.

Moonshine & Mojo Hands is a joint production of Cat Head Delta Blues & Folk Art and Broke & Hungry Records.

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For more information, contact
Roger Stolle at roger@cathead.biz or
Jeff Konkel at jeff@brokeandhungryrecords.com
Photos by Lou Bopp:
1. Gospel-bluesman Leo “Bud” Welch during filming, near Calhoun City, MS.
2. RL Boyce yard party in Como, MS, with show hosts Roger Stolle (L) and Jeff Konkel (R).

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Blast Furnace Blues Festival Coming This Weekend

Robert Randolph, Charlie Musselwhite, Coco Montoya & More Headline 2016 Blast Furnace Blues Festival at SteelStacks in Bethlehem

Festival, presented by Highmark Blue Shield, set for March 11-13

CharlieMusselwhiteBlastFurnaceBETHLEHEM, PARobert Randolph & the Family Band, GRAMMY winner Charlie Musselwhite, Johnny Winter’s All Star Band, Coco Montoya and the Royal Southern Brotherhood headline the fifth Blast Furnace Blues Festival presented by Highmark Blue Shield March 11-13, 2016 at the ArtsQuest Center at SteelStacks in Bethlehem. Three-day festival passes and single-day tickets for the event, which features 18 national and local blues artists are available at www.steelstacks.org and 610-332-3378.

On Sat., March 12, Blast Furnace Blues welcomes dynamic funk and soul group Robert Randolph & the Family Band. Named one of the “100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time” by Rolling Stone, Robert Randolph and his band first gained national attention with the release of the album Live at the Wetlands in 2002. The group has performed at festivals ranging from Bonnaroo and Austin City Limits, to Gathering of the Vibes and the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival, while Randolph’s guitar work has resulted in collaborations with icons such as Eric Clapton and Carlos Santana.

Prior to Robert Randolph’s set, guests will enjoy a scorchin’ performance by the Royal Southern Brotherhood featuring Cyril Neville of The Neville Brothers. Also performing is Coco Montoya, a former member of John Mayall’s Bluesbreakers who’s been called “the hottest southpaw in the blues” by Guitar One Magazine.

Headlining the festival on Sun., March 13, is the one and only Charlie Musselwhite. A Blues Hall of Famer and a 2013 GRAMMY winner for Get Up!, his collaboration with Ben Harper, Musselwhite has been recording and performing for more than five decades. During his career, the legendary harmonica player has recorded and shared the stage with a who’s who of the music world including blues legends like Muddy Waters and Howling Wolf, as well as Mick Jagger, INXS, Tom Waits and the Blind Boys of Alabama.

Earlier in the day, attendees will also enjoy a special tribute to Johnny Winter as the Johnny Winter All Star Band rocks the ArtsQuest Center. This high-energy ensemble features former Johnny Winter Band members Paul Nelson on guitar and James Montgomery on vocals, performing the music of the late blues-rock guitarist. Among the other artists who will take the stage March 13 is Janiva Magness, the 2009 Blues Foundation B.B. King Entertainer of the Year and 2015 Contemporary Female Artist of the Year.

”Highmark Blue Shield is proud to once again sponsor the Blast Furnace Blues Festival, a wonderful musical event that draws blues-lovers far beyond the Lehigh Valley,” says Susan Hubley, director of community affairs at Highmark. “This year’s lineup of musicians looks as incredible as the setting at SteelStacks. We’re grateful for the opportunity to show our support for this showcase of blues talent.”

The 2016 Blast Furnace Blues Festival kicks off Fri., March 11, with an incredible night of music by some of the region’s top blues acts. Set to take the stage are Friar’s Point, Sarah Ayers Band and the Craig Thatcher Band. The festival will also offer a special blues brunch, with music by the BC Combo, March 13 at 11 a.m.

Looking for the ultimate experience at Blast Furnace Blues? The festival offers three-day VIP Packages, which include admission to the entire festival, as well as a Sunday Blues Brunch ticket, meet & greets with select headliners, commemorative poster, valet parking and more. VIP Packages, which are available in limited quantities, are only $199.

BLAST FURNACE BLUES PRESENTED BY HIGHMARK BLUE SHIELD LINEUP:
March 11
Musikfest Café presented by Yuengling
6:30 p.m. Friar’s Point
8:00 p.m. Sarah Ayers Band
9:45 p.m. Craig Thatcher Band

March 12
Musikfest Café presented by Yuengling
12:30 p.m. Ursula Ricks
1:45 p.m. Darrell Nulisch
3:15 p.m. James Armstrong
5:00 p.m. Coco Montoya
6:45 p.m. Royal Southern Brotherhood
8:30 p.m. Robert Randolph & the Family Band
Fowler Blast Furnace Room Stage
1:00 p.m. Maria Woodford Band
2:30 p.m. Toby Walker
4:15 p.m. Ursula Ricks
6:00 p.m. Darrell Nulisch
7:45 p.m. James Armstrong

March 13
Musikfest Café presented by Yuengling
11:00 a.m. The BC Combo
1:15 p.m. The Revelers
2:30 p.m. Janiva Magness
4:15 p.m. Johnny Winter All Star Band
6:00 p.m. Charlie Musselwhite
Fowler Blast Furnace Room Stage
12:30 p.m. Matt Anderson
2:00 p.m. James Supra
3:45 p.m. Matt Anderson
5:15 p.m. The Revelers