It was September 7, 2010 that fetus-like Blues411,com posed the question “What are the blues anyway?” It’s answer was a very interesting release by Spencer Bohren, a splendid musician who has covered a lot of ground as a musician, and educator. I still think it works today as much as it did then.
It was a quiet start, a few took notice, others (and more) could care less about what I thought. The second article held more sway and was an act of serendipity in a true sense of the word. ‘In Our Collective Thoughts‘ was about Robin Rogers. It was not an easy write, but it was something that had to be done. Urged on by Janiva Magness it appeared on September 11, 2010 and I look at that as a major point in my decision to keep going forward with the site.
Shortly thereafter, September 20, 2010 I was thrilled to be able to chat up Rock ‘n Blues legend George Thorogood. In what remains one of my favorite interviews George and I almost forgot to talk about music as our common love of baseball set the stage for great analogies and side steps.
We ended the month with a super deep talk with Ms. Karen Lovely. She had just released her second album (is that vinyl?) ‘Still The Rain’ and we spoke about childhood, hurt, love, children and the path that life takes.
Pretty decent for a first month of officially documented work.
Back to the future if we may. Tomorrow (September 7th) begins the fourth anniversary of the birth of Blues411. Never in my wildest dreams would I dare to think that it would be all this AND a bag of chips!
From working with SiriusXM Bluesville, and being in their studio and with them on air at the BMA’s, to making so many friends who are genuine and kind – artists and fans alike – who share the passion and fever that possessed me for this music.
There is a depth of support and (dare I say) love that exists in this community and being a native New Yorker I was skeptical at first, well was I wrong. The relationships that I have developed with folks around the world has made me one of the happiest folks I know. Y’all keep telling me I got a great smile, well hell yeh I do, I am that blessed that it can’t help but show.
I do not do this alone, first off there is my wife and best friend, Leslie. Who encouraged and supported me from before Day1. I had been toying with the idea of this for some time and had several incarnations and assignments before branching out on my own. She stood by me and still does, even though she is now retired and is reigning over me and keeping me in line a tad more than usual, but it’s all good.
The artists are wonderful. They open up to some of my odd or difficult questions. They think and respond with real feelings and at times emotions. My interview with Zac Harmon was a landmark for me and an eye opener for many as we spoke of things that normally do not get passed the gated doors of the inner sanctum or back rooms of the music industry. My interview with a, then, not very well known one man band, Ben Prestage, who excited me with the content and imagery inside his song writing.
Folks related to the blues world, not necessarily musicians but those who work along the side lines, Vinny Marini, Bill Wax, Tony Colter – these on air personalities who allow me to share their stage with them, thanks to each of you. Betsie Brown, Frank Roszak, Mark Pucci and many other kind souls who work the media end and supply the music to me so I can let get you the new word on the street.
The festival folks who strive to put on stage for us all the very best of national and local talent. Eric Larsen at the Chenango Blues Festival, my first festival and always will be my favorite, and Michael Cloeren of the PA Blues fest for allowing me to be part of their team. A special thanks to Earl Thomas for asking me to be MC for his ‘Raise The Roof Concert’ in California, and the artists who performed that day. Yes, Roger Nabor for bringing his dream, the Bluescruise to us all so that we may share in it. That was a critical jumping off point for me as I saw and interacted with so many on my first cruise that I knew that I had to spread the good word.
Allow me to take it back a step – to the indie artists, Lucy Hammond, Amy Hart, Mia Vermillion, The Port City Prophets and countless more who toil night and day to make their music their way and deserve our attention and support.
To our fans and friends, Martin Goettsch, Marcia Adams, Wendy Schumer, Pete Enright and all of you who tell me to keep going to stay the course, and support me and what I do. You pass out buttons, you comment on posts you turn me on to your fav bands – we are all in this together. I am but the conduit and you all are the energy. My extra set of eyes, and ears.
I just looked at the stats for this past month August 2013. Over 11k visitors to the site for the month! Holy spam blockers batman, that’s an amazing number. That plus all the fun on Facebook that we all have together helps me keep on keeping on. It also spurs me to make it all even better, I will strive to do so because everyone ‘deserves’ the very best from each of us, and by giving our best to each other we can make us all better.
Sorry for the ramble, I sit here amazed and humbled by the overwhelming success of this little web site that could and this week has been one of reflection, re-purposing and relaxing when I can. Drinks at the pool, a Friday tradition!
Look for changes, all for the better I hope, for continuity, for new ways to help everyone reach the common goal – to keep the Blues alive & thriving.
Love, Peace & Chicken Grease
Where Blues Thrive