Join me today on http://www.bluesmusicfan.com for the best in contemporary blues during my roadhouse blues show from 12-2 pm ET. I will be featuring new tunes by Blue Moon Marquee, Ben Levin, Jimmy Carpenter, Dr. John, The Shaelyn Band, Jimmy Hall, and Bywater Call.
Here is the intended playlist. I publish this with the hope that if you like some of the songs that you will download and buy them using your favorite music service. You too can help the blues to thrive in 2022!!
The year 2019 was a banner year for the roadhouse blues across the world. From Australia to Copenhagen and along all points in between, both debut artists and well established performers released a stunning number of new recordings. Every month my in box and my mail box were full of some fabulous blues recordings which makes picking the Ben Vee Roadhouse Blues 66 this year much more daunting.
This year’s list includes classic blues, roots oriented blues, R&B, soul, contemporary blues and blues rock artists with songs that span the genre from “almost the blues” tunes to the stellar classic blues sound of Mary Lane. Given that many of us have some extra time on our hands due to the ongoing global pandemic, I hope you enjoy downloading and listening to every one of these songs.
The position of the songs on the list is of little consequence…you might list them in a different order and get no argument from me. Whether it is song #23 by Samantha Fish or number 66 by the Coyote Kings, all of these tunes made my playlists for my roadhouse blues shows at http://www.bluesmusicfan.com, got mentioned on my Ben Vee Facebook page or Twitter account, and/or got written about on this website at http://www.benveeblues.com during 2019. All 66 are representative of the energy and vitality that permeates the modern contemporary blues….by and large they are upbeat…sometimes loud…and truly international.
The Top Ten (in no particular order other than #1)
#1 Mary Lane – Blues Give Me a Feeling (2019 Travelin’ Woman)
Mary Lane, from Chicago, recorded the Roadhouse Blues 66 number one tune of 2019 at the age of 83!! How cool is that! She is one of the last living legendary singers of the blues to have been part of the great migration from the American Deep South to Chicago in the 1940’s. Just a fabulous tune!
Big Daddy Wilson – Crazy World (2019 Deep In My Soul)
An expat from the United States who has lived in Germany for years, Big Daddy aces an sumptuous slow soul ballad.
Altered Five Blues Band – Mischief Man (2019 Ten Thousand Watts)
Led by the deep blues voice of Jeff Taylor, this group out of Wisconsin once again makes one of my top performer annual blues lists.
Keb’ Mo’ – Cold Outside (2019 Oklahoma)
I played this song over and over when it came out on the album this past summer. You can nevah get enough of Keb’ Mo’!
Christone Kingfish Ingram – Fresh Out (2019 Kingfish)
A 20 year old with a debut album that features a cut with Buddy Guy as well as another with Keb’ Mo’. Life is good for this very talented young man.
Jontavious Willis – Low Down Ways (2019 Spectacular Class)
Another young blues artist that attracted the attention of Taj Mahal as well as Keb’ Mo’, Jontavious has stardom written all over him. It will be interesting to see how he evolves as a blues artist as the years roll by.
Tiffany Pollack & Eric Johanson – Blues In My Blood (2019 Blues In My Blood)
This blues duo hails from my hometown of New Orleans. Tiffany has a haunting voice that is framed by a strong beat and memorable guitar licks by Eric on this song.
Beth Hart – Bad Woman Blues (2019 War In My Mind)
Beth just has a great time with this tune and shows off the chops that have made her a fan favorite amongst blues rockers.
Brandon Santini – Drive You Off My Mind (2019 The Longshot)
This long time resident of Memphis had a great year in 2019. He was my 2019 Roadhouse Bluesman of the Year for both this album and one he did with Tennessee Redemption. A great voice and world class harmonica player; what’s not to like!
Allman Betts Band – Shinin’ (2019 Down to the River)
The sons of the Allman Brothers pick up where their dads left off! Not much else to be said but get yer tickets when they get close by!!
As you look through the rest of the list and hopefully listen to many, if not all, of the tunes, I hope you get an appreciation for what I term as the roadhouse blues. From its roots in the deep American south, the blues has grown and expanded to become a worldwide phenomenon. (And if someone you know states “the blues is dead” just show them this list and ask them how so?!) I am proud to be one of the DJs and influencers helping get the word out about just how great this music is!!!
Blues Give Me A Feeling
Big Daddy Wilson
Deep In My Soul
Altered Five Blues Band
Ten Thousand Watts
Christone “Kingfish” Ingram
Fresh Out (ft Buddy Guy)
Low Down Ways
Tiffany Pollack & Eric Johanson
Blues In My Blood
Blues In My Blood
Bad Woman Blues
War in my Mind
Drive You Off My Mind
The Allman Betts Band
Down to the River
Amnesia Blues Band
Fast Johnny Cool
If I Love You Hard Enough
Mindi Abair and the Boneshakers
Who’s Gonna Save My Soul
No Good Deed
Me My Guitar and the Blues
Lights On But Nobody’s Home
Coming In Hot
Ghost Town Blues Band
Tedeschi Trucks Band
They Don’t Shine
Three Chords and the Truth
Three Chords and the Truth
Howlin’ For My Darlin’
I Still Get Excited
Kenny Wayne Shepherd
Woman Like You
Zack Walther Band
Kill or Be Kind
Don’t Give Up on the Blues
Don’t Give Up on the Blues
Pack It Up
50: Just Warming Up!
I’m Coming For You
Rise from the Flames
Left Lane Cruiser
Shake and Bake
A Fool Like Me
Tall, Dark, and Handsome
Miss Bix and the Blues Fix
Follow Me Down
We Don’t Own the Blues
Ain’t My Problem (ft The Teskey Brothers)
The Texas Horns
I’m Doin’ Alright (ft. Carolyn Wonderland)
Get Here Quick
The Mike Duke Project
I’m Not Sad Tonight
….Took a Whlle
Ronnie Earl & the Broadcasters
Baby How Long
Beyond the Blue Door
Travelin’ Blue Kings
So Called Story Teller
Ida Bang & the Blue Tears
Good to Me
Women and Whiskey
Rainy City Blues
Road I Call Home
The Teskey Brothers
So Caught Up
Run Home Slow
Kerry Pastine and the Crime Scene
City of Love
Somebody Save Me
I Feel the Same (ft Paul DesLauriers)
Kiss My Sass
Back To Tennessee
Start a Fight
Harvesting My Roots
Wentus Blues Band w/ Duke Robillard
Too Much Mustard
Rockin’ Johnny & QuiQue Gomez
Everybody Loves My Baby
Dos Hombres Wanted
Broke And Lonely
Keep On Turning
I Can Fix It (ft Jack Pearson)
Pawn Shop Blues (Roadhouse)
Sweet Or Mean
The Kokomo Kings
Fighting Fire with Gasoline
Coming Closer to the Day
Coming Closer to the Day
Blue Moon Marquee
As I Lay Dying
Bare Knuckes & Brawn
Train to Key Biscayne
Train to Key Biscayne
Don’t Bother Trying To Steal Her Love
Thinkin’ and Drinkin’
For Love & Money
I’m a Bluesman
Jook Joint Jam
Manx Mariner Manline
Hell Bound for Heaven
Girl Got the Mojo
The Blues Gonna Getcha
Big Wolf Band
Ben Vee is an internet DJ and writer from New Orleans that now lives in Connecticut with his wife Annette. He started spinning records back in the 1970’s and has been writing about the roadhouse blues since 2011. He does two roadhouse blues shows each week on http://www.bluesmusicfan.com and he writes about the blues when the urge strikes on http://www.benveeblues.com.
Got a mix of some great contemporary blues featuring the B. Christopher Band, Kelsey Miles, Ghost Town Blues Band, Sass Jordan, Southern Avenue and many more. Stream in at http://www.bluesmusicfan.com if ya get a chance at High Noon EST.
Have a mix of new contemporary blues and some classics I hope you will enjoy. Stream in at http://www.bluesmusicfan.com at 3 PM EST today, January 23rd.. I will feature new songs by Sass Jordan, Chris Shutters, Bill Blue, Bywater Call, and Angel Forrest plus 20 or so others.
Well we have reached the middle of a hot summer……anyone looking forward to fall already?? I invite you to kick back with a cold one and enjoy some Roadhouse Blues today at 3 pm EST on BMFR. You can tune in at http://www.bluesmusicfan.com. There is also a chat app on the homepage so you can join me to request or comment on the songs!
Here is the intended playlist:
Across The Desert
Right Around The Corner
Brother Yusef, The Fattback Bluesman
Hey There Blues
Something I Can’t Have
Bob Corritore and Friends
Trying To Make A Living (feat. Sugaray Rayford & Junior Watson)
Time for the Tuesday Roadhouse Blues Nooner with Ben Vee on http://www.bluesmusicfan.com! It starts today (July 30th) at High Noon EST and will feature tunes that are related to each other by some measure.
Below is the intended playlist. See if you can pick out why I related the tunes!
The summer is blowin’ by and here are some of the albums that I am listening to (song links to Spotify or Youtube are in blue):
The Kokomo Kings – Fighting Fire with Gasoline(2019)
The Kokomo Kings new album Fighting Fire with Gasoline heralds the return of the era when rock & roll and the blues were essentially the same genre. Upbeat and fun, I really enjoyed EVERY tune on this recording done by a mix of band members from Sweden and Denmark. I don’t know if it is somethin’ in the water, but there are a number of great new bands coming out of Copenhagen and Stockholm and the Kokomo Kings are one of the best. The band features Martin Abrahamsson (vocals and guitar), Magnus Lanshammar (bass and guitar), Ronni Boysen (guitar), and Daniel Winerö (drums).
The album is packed with great rockin’ boogie blues tunes that will get your hips and feet movin’ including A Big Pile of Fish, Fighting Fire With Gasoline, Fooled by the City Lights, I Thought I was a Patient Man, If I was an Alien, Tornadohead, and The Fish Won’t Bite. Really lovedHeatwavewhich has a Fabulous Thunderbirds feel to it. And my personal favorite is Tied to the Tracks that has some nice guitar riffs and a Mississippi Hill Country sound.
The influence of Muddy Waters and Chuck Berry pervades the album and I know both are in blues heaven smilin’ down on this fantastic recording. Now…if only I can persuade them to send me a t-shirt with the album cover on it…my summer will be complete!!!
Jason Ricci & the Bad Kind – My Chops Are Rolling (Ellersoul Records 2019)
Since releasing his first recording in 1995, Jason Ricci has earned a reputation as one of the best harmonica players in the music business with two awards (2010 & 2018) from the prestigious Blues Music Foundation for his talent on the instrument. On his second release for Ellersoul Records, My Chops Are Rolling, Jason Ricci & the Bad Kind again lay down some badass roadhouse blues.
I was captivated by the tune The Way That I Hurt Myselfthat has echoes of Led Zeppelin in the performance. The song highlights Jason’s voice as well as some badass harpin’ and also shines the musical spotlight on the incredible guitar playing of John Lisi.
Additionally, Jason does a stellar instrumental cover of Led Zepp’s Going to California on the album. I also enjoyed Break In the Rain and a song he recorded with his wife, Kaitlin Dibble, entitled If You Should Lose Me. It is a great cover of a song originally performed by Barbara Lynn back in the late 1960’s.
Jason & I share a love for the New Orleans Saints and he put his admiration into words and music on Who Dat Nation! All you Saints fan should give it a listen! And Atlanta Falcon fans might want to avoid the explicit version he also includes 😛
Blue Moon Marquee – Bare Knuckles & Brawn(Factor Canada 2019)
Harkening back to the era of the blues cabaret, Blue Moon Marquee modernizes the sound on their new CD, Bare Knuckles & Brawn. A.W. Cardinal makes it work with gritty vocals and guitar playing and Jasmine Collette lays down some badass upright bass riffs as well as vocals. They are the core of a band that features guest appearances by Darcy Phillips (keyboards), Jerry Cook (Tenor & Bari Sax, Clarinet), Jimmy “Hollywood” Badger (Drums), Jack Garton (trumpet), and Paul Pigat (guitar).
Overall, this is well produced album with a laid back ambiance and a jazzy feel that still maintains an adherence to the blues. I really enjoyed 52nd Street Strut, As I Lay Dying, and the sultry feel of Big Black Mamba. Big Smoke is a great blues tune and Fever Flickering Flame conjures up scenes of a packed dance floor at a 1920 speakeasy. The haunting use of the trumpet and sparse piano licks perfectly frame Jasmine’s voice on Hard Times Hit Parade. And I loved the western swing guitar playing of Paul on The Red Devil Himself.
This is the perfect album to share with friends, a fine cigar, and a dirty martini. Let me know when ya do!!!
Travellin’ Blue Kings – Wired Up(Donor Productions 2019)
A European band that helps defines what I term as the roadhouse blues, the Travellin’ Blue Kings kick out some solid tunes on their new album Wired Up. This four piece band consists of Stephan Hermsen (vocals, harp, guitar), Jimmy Hontelé (guitar), Winne Penninckx (bass), and Marc Gijbels (drums).
This is another album where I loved EVERY cut. Particular favorites are Get It Done, Ninety Minutes, Into the Night, Straight Eight, and The Way It Used to Be. The instrumental title cut Wired Up is also a badass tune featuring some awesome guitar playing.
They are also the first band that I have seen that identify themselves as being from Benelux, an economic union of Belgium, the Netherlands, and Luxembourg. The Travellin’ Blue Kings are doing their part to promote Benelux with one of the best roadhouse blues albums of 2019!
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