2022 is turning into a great year for new contemporary Roadhouse blues. Join me today on http://www.bluesmusicfan.com from 12-2 pm ET as I spin new tunes from Edgar Winter, Horojo Trio, Duke Robillard, Scott Ellison, Lolo, Mindi Abair, Nick Andrea, Ash Grunwald, and plenty more!
The Year 2020 was one that we all were glad to see go. Not only were our family, friends, and neighbors ravaged by COVID but our political systems were stressed and our rights to meet and gather were often suspended. And performing artists and musicians took the financial brunt of the frenzied response as outdoor venues, bars, and restraunts closed across the world throwing millions of performers out of work. But musicians are a resilient and creative group. They retreated, like the rest of us, to their homes, their garages, and their basements and began the process of creating new music using novel internet collaborative tools to record and share their music with other band members and recording studios. The product of their work is what I want us to celebrate in this article. It took new thinking, creative use of software, and dogged perseverance to write, record, and release new music during 2020 and EVERY artist and group that did so should be commended for not giving in to the darkness and continuing to bring the joy of music to us all.
During 2020, I played over 7000 songs on my DJ shows and listened to hundreds of albums sent to me by the artists, publicists, and record companies. I received even more as part of the staff of Blues Music Fan Radio. Out of all that music, I have chosen my favorite 66 roadhouse blues songs for 2020 using only two rules; I had to have played the tune during one of my shows in 2020 and I could only select one song per album. The list represents less than 1% of all music that I broadcast during the year and includes both perennial favorites as well as artists you may not have heard of. These are the best of the best and regardless of position on this listing, they are all fabulous tunes in my opinion. I hope you enjoy reviewing the list, listening to the songs, and hopefully, downloading some for your own music collection or as a gift to family and friends.
The Roadhouse Blues Top 66 Songs
The Smoke Wagon Blues Band
The Fat Man
The Ballad Of Albert Johnson
Treat Me Like I Want
Weed ‘Em & Reap
Beyond Here Lies Nothing
Nora Jean Wallace
I’m A Blues Woman
Turn Me Loose
The Rolling Stones
Living In A Ghost Town
Living In A Ghost Town
The Roadhouse Blues Top 50 & 60 songs
John Primer and Bob Corritore
The Gypsy Woman Told Me
Nobody Gotta Know
Bring Me Sugar
Bring Me Sugar
The End Of The Blues
Henrik Freischlader Band
What Have I Done to You
JD3 & The Jondo Trio
Rocks At The Moon
Living In The Palace Of The King
Flame Still Burns
Chairman Of The Board
Tryin’ to Get to You
Paul Buchanan’s Voodoo Preachers
Some Kind Of Voodoo
New Moon Jelly Roll Freedom Rockers
Night Time (feat Jimbo Mathis)
Mary Jo Curry Band
Nothin’ Is Easy
Voodoo Down the River
Tales From The Psychedelta
Black Cat Moan
Another Day In San Jose
The Reverend Shawn Amos & The Brotherhood
Counting Down The Days
The Lucky Losers
Half a Nothing
Samantha Martin & Delta Sugar
The Reckless On
Coming In Hot
Anything You Want
That’s What I Heard
Force of Will
Force of Will
The Roadhouse Blues Top 40 songs
Steve Washington (feat Lucky Peterson)
Blues Don’t Cost a Thing
Just A Matter of Time
Tammi Savoy & The Chris Casello Combo
As Long As I’m Movin’
That Rock ‘n’ Roll Rhythm!
Too Slim and the Taildraggers
David Rotundo Band
I Must Be Crazy
So Much Trouble
Ain’t Beggin’ Nobody
Crazy with the Blues
Searching For A Man
Good As Gone
Rebel Moon Blues
Barbecue And Blues
Deep Dark Demon
Walk Until I Ride
The Roadhouse Blues Top 30 Songs
Down To The Bottom
Below Sea Level
Evil Till Sunrise
Ice Cream In Hell
The Immediate Family
Slippin’ and Slidin’
After The Storm
Ain’t Done Yet
Every Bird That Flies
Self Made Man
Since I Been Loving You
Somebody Gotta Make A Move
Church House Blues
The Roadhouse House Top 20 Songs
Rae Gordon Band
Get Right With The World
Wrong Kind Of Love
Have You Lost Your Mind Yet?
My Back Scratcher
Carryout Or Delivery
The War and Treaty
Beautiful (feat. Jason Isbell)
Until The End Of Time
I’m The Beast From The East
It’s A Mighty Hard Road
The Mary Stokes Band
Joanne Shaw Taylor
The Roadhouse Top Ten Tunes for 2020
10. Johnny Iguana – Shake Your Money Maker [Johnny Iguana’s Chicago Spectacular] (Delmark Records)
Johnny Iguana’s cover of the Elmore James song from 1961 should get you movin’ in your easy chair as you listen. Johnny’s energetic keyboard playing is superbly matched by the slide guitar work of Lil’ Ed.
9. Layla Zoe – Nowhere Left To Go [Title Cut] (Self Release)
Though not officially released until January 8, 2021, I got a promo copy in December and started spinning it so it makes the list! Layla’s growling delivery is just badass and harkens back to Janis Joplin.
8. Wily Bo Walker/Danny Flam – Ain’t No Man a Good Man [Title Cut] (Mescal Canyon Records)
Blues rock with a hint of Dr. John in his voice, Wily Bo is a fantastic UK artist with a growing following. Wily’s delivery is theatric in nature and I can’t wait for the opportunity to see him and Danny perform live on stage one day…SOON!
7. Alastair Greene – Bayou Mile [The New World Blues] (Whiskey Bayou Records)
A native of Ventura, California, Alastair got to collaborate with the great Tab Benoit from my home state of Louisiana to make this recording and the result is a haunting beautiful song.
6. Thorbjorn Risager and the Black Tornado – Come On In [Title Cut] (Ruf Records)
A Danish powerhouse and one of my favorite European roadhouse blues artists, Thorbjorn has a unique voice and he is backed by an incredible seven piece ensemble that just continue to crank out catchy and upbeat roadhouse blues tunes.
5. Dion – Blues Comin’ On (ft. Joe Bonamassa) [Blues With Friends] (KTBA Records)
An American treasure, Dion is still creating vibrant music at the age of 81! Produced by Joe Bonamassa’s Keeping the Blues Alive label, Dion got Joe to sit in on this track!
4. Christone “Kingfish” Ingram – Rock & Roll [Empty Promises] (Alligator Records)
This song is about a deal with the angels and a family’s devotion to a young artist’s future. It is simply beautiful and Christone’s delivery is authentic and riveting.
3. Joe Bonamassa – Why Does It Take So Long to Say Goodbye [Royal Tea] (J&R Adventures)
Another Joe Bonamassa ballad that meshes rock and blues like only he can. He is known as a world class guitar player, but I love his voice and his songwriting. This one is a roadhouse jewel!
2. Walter Trout – Make It Right [Ordinary Madness] (Provogue Records)
At 69, Walter is creating some of the best music of his storied career. The guitar playing on this tune is vintage Trout. I hope I get to see him perform it live sometime this year or next!
1……. Avey Grouws Band – Rise Up [The Devil May Care] (Self Release)
A self released debut album by a group from Iowa features a song that is my #1 roadhouse tune for 2020! Who would have thought?? I know I didn’t until I heard Jeni Grouw’s voice and Chris Avey’s guitar playing on Rise Up. It is not only a catchy but topical tune. We all need to rise up, in love, and confront the issues of our times head on without hate or rancor. It’s a song and a message we all need to spread around! Oh…and by the way…..the Avey Grouws Band will be appearing in concert in June with…..Walter Trout. My #1 and #2 artists on the same stage…..if you are close…go see them!!!!
Ben Vee started out spinning songs on terrestrial radio and at nightclubs back in the 1970’s in his home state of Louisiana. After a career in the construction business, he returned to DJing in 2011. He now hosts two shows each week on http://www.bluesmusicfan.com and writes about the blues at http://www.benveeblues.com from his home in Connecticut. He also has a 24 hour stream devoted to the Roadhouse Blues… WRHB.
Join me today on http://www.bluesmusicfan.com for my Roadhouse Blues Nooner from 12-2 pm EST. I will be spinning tunes by Karin Rudefelt, Mia Vermillion, Forest McDonald, Tiffany Pollack, Tullie Brae, Mike Zito, and a bunch more.
Hope all is still well with you and yours! Tune in today from 3-5 pm ET on http://www.bluesmusicfan.com for the Ben Vee Good Time Roadhouse blues featuring tunes by Keb’ Mo’, Jonny Lang, Carolyn Wonderland, Jan James, Larkin Poe, and many more.
Below is the intended playlist which I publish in the hopes that you will download a tune or two and support the contemporary blues!!
Have some great tunes lined up for you for today’s Good Time Roadhouse blues show on http://www.bluesmusicfan.com. Will be playing a beautiful duet by Gregg Allman and Mindi Abair that they recorded in 2014 as well as songs by Danielle Nicole, The Nighthawks, Rynhrd Boegel, Jim Allchin with Keb’ Mo’, Pinkie Rideau, and many more. Grab your favorite beverage and/or smoke and join us at from 3 to 5 pm EST.
Kind of an eclectic set of the roadhouse blues today with contemporary blues, roots blues, some soul, and a bit of blues rock. A number of tunes are by artists that won awards at Sunday night’s Blues Foundation award ceremonies for 2019.
Hope ya have a chance to tune in from 12 to 2 pm EST today on http://www.bluesmusicfan.com. And since most of us are at home, freshen up your coffee or whatever you are drinking….kick back….and enjoy the tunes.
There are good bands and there are great bands but there are not many great roadhouse blues bands that have produced THIRTY ONE solid and engaging albums over the years. With the release of TRYIN’ TO GET TO YOU, The Nighthawks, based out of Washington, DC, continue to mesh the sounds of rock ‘n’ roll and the upbeat electric blues into a incredible musical menagerie. And they are worthy of consideration as one of the very best bands in the storied history of the electric blues.
The band is led by Mark Wenner, a first class harmonica player and a singer with the perfect type of voice for the uplifting style of music that they play. The steady beat is provided by drummer Mark Stutso who also adds vocals. And two new group members, Dan Hovey (guitars) and Paul Pisciotta (bass) both contribute vocals for some fabulous harmonies on a number of the new tunes.
The new album has that upbeat rhythm and sound that just transports you to a good place. I loved the driving bass and harmonica on Baby, It’s Time. And Chairman of the Board is some damn fine sultry blues with an insistent hip movin’ beat that cries out to be released as a single. The title cut, Tryin’ to Get to You, is a sweet fusion of doo wap and the electric blues with a tone on Dan’s guitar that is entrancing. Don’t Worry Baby is the kind of rockin’ blues song that has been a signature staple of the band over the years. And Somethin’ Cookin is a delicious blues shuffle…..mhmm…my kinda tune.
This is easily one of the best roadhouse blues releases of 2020. It will wanna make ya call out to your Baby and get them close for some social spacing hip shakin’ in the living room….yeah it is that good! Go On….right now….download this jewel of a recording…I promise you that you won’t regret it!! It will make ya smile, dance, and have a damn fine time while ya listen….and that is the very definition of the roadhouse blues for the weekend!
The Nighthawks – Tryin’ To Get To You (2020 Ellersoul Records)
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.
Gettin’ ready to start my first Roadhouse Blues Nooner of the new decade!! Come join us on http://www.bluesmusicfan.com at 12 pm EST today, January 7th, for some great contemporary blues by artists like Robert Cray, 11 Guys Quartet, CW Ayon, Hakon Hoye, Hurricane Ruth, the Forrest McDonald Band, and plenty more.
Below is the intended playlist. If ya like em…buy em at your favorite music download site….and help the blues to thrive in 2020!!
Got the Post Labor Day Roadhouse Blues on BMFR starting at High Noon EST, Tuesday September 3rd. Join us at http://www.bluesmusicfan.com. Got a great promo cut from Beth Hart’s forthcoming album, new tunes from Coco Montoya and the Altered Five Blues Band, and much more!
Tune in at http://www.bluesmusicfan.com at 3 pm EST today for some more badass roadhouse blues. Got new tunes by Tullie Brae, Samantha Fox, Eliza Neals & Popa Chubby, Albert Castiglia and the Allman Betts Band!
Below is the intended playlist.
Price Of The Blues
The Gordon Meier Blues Experience
Just Keep Ridin’
Living With Yo Mama (Feat. Popa Chubby & Dave Keyes)