Advent 20 Festival Fun Music and Antics 2017

Advent 20 Festival Fun Music and Antics 2017 – Festivals are so much more than the music. Music is the glue that binds the fun time together making friends catching up with people and discovering new bands.  So thank you for the music we will be exploring festivals in 2018 I am sure.

 

 

Advent 20 Festival Fun Music and Antics 2017

 

UKBlues Federation hosted – 4th UKBlues Challenge September 2017 

 

 

The winner was LaVendore Rogue – The band are off to represent the UK and the International Blues Challenge in Memphis and The European Blues Challenge in Hell, Norway.

 

Advent 20 Festival Fun Music and Antics 2017

Fun and Music creating Perfect Mayhem Old Bush Blues 2017

Rising to New Heights of Perfection Old Bush Blues 2017. How? Matt Williams found the music and bought three days of live fun to Callow End. Read More HERE – Old Bush Blues August 2017

 

 

 

Advent 20 Festival Fun Music and Antics 2017

Steelhouse 2017 Simply Marvellous Mud Music and Mates

Steelhouse family came together on a Welsh Mountain united by rain, sun and MUD! The glue binding us was live music and the super glue the brilliance of Bernie Marsden not once, not twice but all three days on the stage entertaining.  We had dragon magic gracing the festival that you climb up slowly to the top driving up a rough track to the top of a Welsh Mountain above Aberbeeg. Read The rest HERE – Steelhouse 2017

 

 

Advent 20 Festival Fun Music and Antics 2017

 

Chocolate Free Music Fueled HRH Blues Easter

Back in the O2 Sheffield for the second year HRH Blues III promised with a deep blues infused line-up to be an Easter full of music. They certainly delivered across the two stages, as ever clashes were at times frustrating, demonstrating the wealth of blues in town this weekend. READ the rest HERE – HRH Blues III Sheffield 15th – 16th April

 

 

Advent 20 Festival Fun Music and Antics 2017

Blues Shone Bright at Bristol Jazz & Blues Festival

Colston Hall was buzzing to the sound of live music from the Foyer, through The Lantern and into the Main Stage. Bristol Jazz & Blues Festival has become a regular event in music lovers diaries from Bristol and beyond with its sparkling mix of Jazz & Blues. Bluesdoodles dipped into the weekend for a Smörgåsbord of blues on offer, from Sari Schorr to Mud Morganfield and we had listening fun and the magic of live music, festival delights of food, beer and meeting and making friends.

 

Sari Schorr – March 2017
Northsyde – March 2017
Robben Ford – March 2017
Kirk Fletcher – March 2017
Mud Morganfield – March 2017

 

Advent 20 Festival Fun Music and Antics 2017

Skegness Solid Live Music More Blues than Rock in 2017

January drawing to a close, Christmas lights a fading memory. Then your calendar clicks around to Butlins, Skegness for the Great British Rock & Blues Festival, the next year of musical journeys begins. This year the emphasis is on Blues, Rock has fallen if not silent but reduced to a whisper this year, upsetting some and definitely changing the balance and feel of the weekend. READ The Highlights on the weekend HERE The Great British Rock & Blues Festival – Jan 2017

 

 

 

Advent 20 Festival Fun Music and Antics 2017 – The music was superb, the friendship immense and at times the Mud was sticky. What will 2018 Festival fun be bringing as Bluesdoodles kicks off 2018 at The Great British Rock & Blues Festival in Skegness January 2018?

 

Advent 20 Festival Fun Music and Antics 2017

Day 4 Advent UKBlues Federation

Day 4 Advent UKBlues Federation

Day 4 Advent UKBlues Federation

 

 

 

The UKBlues Federation is a pan-UK Federation that has been established to promote and support Blues in and from the United Kingdom in all its forms and styles.

We have created a not for profit federation of musicians, organisations, associations, groups, venues, companies, individuals and any other interested parties within the UK who already work to support, promote and encourage blues of all sorts within the UK, to work together to achieve UKBlues Federation’s aims. JOIN HERE  showing your support of British Blues.

Day 4 Advent UKBlues Federation – 2017 Excitement!

Looking back:

Kaz Hawkins Rising to The Challenge, Memphis and More
Photo Credit Graham Whittington

Kaz Hawkins Band reaching the semi-finals the International Blues Challenge in Memphis Read about the excitement as the UK has a representative in Memphis for the first time. Kaz Hawkins Band then went on to pick up the winners trophy at European Blues Challenge Read HERE

4th UKBlues Challenge went to The Cavern in Liverpool. With LaVendore Rogue winning and now raising money through Crowdfunding to represent the UK in Memphis & Hell. Read more HERE

UKBlues Federation: Have continued to grow with the British Blues Archives coming on board and the announcement of UKBlues Awards to be held in 2018!

 

Day 4 Advent UKBlues FederationUKBlues Federation are delighted to announce the inaugural UKBlues Awards taking place Saturday 19th May 2018 – Worthing Pier – Southern Pavilion.

Both the European Blues Union and The Blues Foundation are supporting these new Awards.

The UKBlues Awards are a natural next step for the UKBlues Federation and furthers its stated aim to support and promote the blues in the UK.

A new, dedicated website has been created and voting in the awards will take place over a four week period in February 2018 and there will be an awards presentation event 18th May 2018.

The initial nomination process will commence in mid -December 2017. For those who are not member, if you would like to be included in the extensive panel of people from across the blues spectrum in the UK involved in the initial nomination stage of the Awards process, then e-mail us at  panel@ukbluesawards.com  giving us your name, full postal address, telephone number and the e-mail address with which you wish to register plus a brief outline (no more than 50 words) describing why you wish to join the panel and your background in the blues in the UK.Read more about the process HERE

Exciting categories and a night full of fun and memories with Catfish as the gust band of the evening. A definite date for your 2018 diaries.

 

UKBlues Federation are delighted that LaVendore Rogue will be representing the  UK at the International Blues Challenge in Memphis & European Blues Challenge in Hell during 2018.

With the campaign having passed the halfway mark in terms of time a few days ago, it has reached a wonderful total of nearly £5,000 or just over 55% funded. Add in the £1,500 donated direct to LaVendore Rogue by the UKBlues Federation and the guys are just a smidgin over £2,000.00 from their target of £8,000.

This is a great result to date and we at the UKBlues Federation and the Rogues themselves are all very grateful to everyone who has pledged. Thank you!

There are still loads of great and exclusive rewards waiting to be picked up so if you have not already contributed, why not give yourself and the Rogues an early Christmas present and go to the crowd funding page so you can make a pledge to help them get to Memphis and Hell!!

If you have already pledged, spread the word to your friends, get them to get you an early Christmas present! Thank you!

 

 

The UKBlues Federation is excited to announce that, for the first time ever, the UK will have a representative taking part in the Youth Showcase at the 34th International Blues Challenge between 16th & 20th January 2018.

The Youth Showcase takes place on the afternoon of Friday 19th  January  2018 in the Beale Street entertainment district in Memphis, Tennessee and will see some of the finest in developing blues talent perform in a variety of clubs along the world-famous Beale Street. This is described by the organisers, the Blues Foundation, as a ‘chance to hear the next generation of great blues artists as they hone their talents in order to take the bigger world stage of the future’.

Participants are also involved in workshops, master classes and other events over the 5 day period of the IBC as well as having the opportunity to mix with musicians and others involved with the blues from around the world.

The Youth Showcase is not judged, however all competition rules, regulations and restrictions apply. A panel will offer comments and feedback on performances.

As the only UK Affiliate to the Blues Foundation, the UKBlues Federation is delighted to have been able to offer the opportunity of appearing at and participating in this event to 12 year old Toby Lee, a young man who has already built a huge worldwide following on social media as well as having played on stage with a number of great names including Ronnie Baker Brooks, John Nemeth and Walter Trout.

 

Keep up-to-date with the Federation events and activities supporting Blues across the U.K. in 2018 and Join TODAY

 

Catfish to Play at the Inaugural UKBlues Awards

Catfish to Play at the Inaugural UKBlues Awards

Catfish to Play at the Inaugural UKBlues Awards

Catfish to Play at the Inaugural UKBlues AwardsFollowing on from our announcement of the inaugural UKBlues Awards the presentation of which will take place on Saturday 19th May 2018 at the magnificent Worthing Pier’s Southern Pavilion, we are delighted to announce that providing live music at the event will be British Blues Award winners Catfish who have carved a reputation for themselves as an excellent live band with a phenomenal frontman in 23 year old guitarist/vocalist Matt Long who plays with a real passion for the blues.

Over a two year period they have received no less than  5 nominations in the British Blues Awards and both their albums have reached no 1 in the Independent Blues Broadcasters Association’s Blues Airplay Charts  They have three European tours already booked for 2018.

Recently Blues Matters! said of the band: ‘Catfish are one of the finest live bands in Britain today.  The quality of musicianship is outstanding and in Matt Long, they have one of the greatest young guitarists on the scene today… ‘

We are delighted that we have secured the services of such an excellent band for the inaugural UKBlues Awards presentation event and know that their presence can only enhance what already promises to be a special event.

And we have more great news about who will be our MC for this event, news which will be announced soon!

IT’S NOT TOO LATE TO JOIN THE UKBLUES AWARDS NOMINATION PANEL

Catfish to Play at the Inaugural UKBlues AwardsAs a member of the UKBlues Federation you are automatically part of  the extensive panel of people from across the blues spectrum in the UK who will be invited to take part in the initial nomination stage of the Awards process.

If you know of somebody who you think would be an ideal person to be included in the panel then get them to e-mail us at  panel@ukbluesawards.com  giving us their name, full postal address, telephone number and the e-mail address with which they wish to register plus a brief outline (no more than 50 words) describing why they wish to join the panel and their background in the blues in the UK.

They don’t have to be a musician, a promoter, a writer, a radio presenter etc. If they just love the blues and get out to see bands play whenever they can and buy CDs or downloads of bands’ albums etc. then that means they could be on the panel!

We do not undertake to accept every application and UKBlues’ decision will be final and we will not disclose our reasons for accepting or not accepting applications. All applications will be treated as confidential and all members of the nomination panel are required to keep their involvement in the panel confidential.

The nomination period opens in mid-December so make sure they get their application in before midnight on the 15th December 2018

 

LAVENDORE ROGUE CROWDFUNDING CAMPAIGN UPDATE

 

Catfish to Play at the Inaugural UKBlues Awards

With the campaign having passed the halfway mark in terms of time a few days ago, it has reached a wonderful total of nearly £5,000 or just over 55% funded. Add in the £1,500 donated direct to LaVendore Rogue by the UKBlues Federation and the guys are just a smidgin over £2,000.00 from their target of £8,000.

This is a great result to date and we at the UKBlues Federation and the Rogues themselves are all very grateful to everyone who has pledged. Thank you!

There are still loads of great and exclusive rewards waiting to be picked up so if you have not already contributed, why not give yourself and the Rogues an early Christmas present and go to the crowd funding page so you can make a pledge to help them get to Memphis and Hell!!

If you have already pledged, spread the word to your friends, get them to get you an early Christmas present! Thank you!

UKBlues Federation Involvement in IBC Youth Showcase

UKBlues Federation Involvement in IBC Youth Showcase Announced


IBC YOUTH SHOWCASE

The UKBlues Federation is excited to announce that, for the first time ever, the UK will have a representative taking part in the Youth Showcase at the 34th International Blues Challenge between 16th & 20th January 2018.

The Youth Showcase takes place on the afternoon of Friday 19th  January  2018 in the Beale Street entertainment district in Memphis, Tennessee and will see some of the finest in developing blues talent perform in a variety of clubs along the world-famous Beale Street. This is described by the organisers, the Blues Foundation, as a ‘chance to hear the next generation of great blues artists as they hone their talents in order to take the bigger world stage of the future’.

Participants are also involved in workshops, master classes and other events over the 5 day period of the IBC as well as having the opportunity to mix with musicians and others involved with the blues from around the world.

The Youth Showcase is not judged, however all competition rules, regulations and restrictions apply. A panel will offer comments and feedback on performances.

As the only UK Affiliate to the Blues Foundation, the UKBlues Federation is delighted to have been able to offer the opportunity of appearing at and participating in this event to 12 year old Toby Lee, a young man who has already built a huge worldwide following on social media as well as having played on stage with a number of great names including Ronnie Baker Brooks, John Nemeth and Walter Trout.

In October this year, Toby took the renowned Blues Heaven Festival in Denmark by storm drawing a glowing review from Elmore Magazine.

‘The phenomenon of this festival had to be the little 12-year-old guitar whirlwind, Toby Lee. Cute as a button, he dressed in Mick Jagger duds and held a solid body Gibson Firebird that was just about as big as he was. This little dude stood firm beside the big players in the festival like John Nemeth, Mike Ledbetter, Sugaray Rayford and Ronnie Baker Brooks and matched their riffs blow-for-blow, managed to be as cool as ice. Video taken of him and Ronnie Baker Brooks with duelling guitars have hit the 50-million view mark and has been shared more than 1.4 million times. Yes, that happened at Blues Heaven.’

Toby has been playing guitar since he was 6 and was dubbed a future superstar of the blues by Joe Bonamassa.  He is associated with Gibson Brands and Hamstead Soundworks amplification

He was cast as the original Zack Mooneyham in Andrew Lloyd Webber’s hit musical School of Rock in the West End, a part which he played for a year. With School of Rock he performed in Hyde Park and on shows including Comic Relief, Michael McIntyre and The X Factor. Earlier this year Toby won an Olivier Award along with the other band members of School of Rock for playing live at every show.

He released his first EP “Ten”, produced by Laurence Jones, another of Toby’s admirers when he was 10.

The UKBlues Federation is proud that, following on from the success of last year when the UK’s first ever IBC entrant, the Kaz Hawkins Band, progressed to the competition’s semi-finals. The UK will, this year not only be represented at the International Blues Challenge by LaVendore Rogue who won the 4th UKBlues Challenge but also in the Youth Showcase by one of the youngest artists to take part in this event.

Ashwyn Smyth, Chair of the UKBlues Federation commented: ‘We are both excited and very happy that we have been able to facilitate Toby’s participation at the INC Youth Showcase and see this as an important step in achieving one of our stated aims, supporting and promoting the next generation of blues players and bringing the blues to the younger generations. We wish Toby every success and are proud to have him flying the flag for blues in the UK & the UKBlues Federation.’

You can find out more about Toby at  www.facebook.com/tobyleeguitar where you can also see and hear Toby in action.

 

 

 

UKBlues Federation Crowdfunding Campaign Update for LaVendore Rogue

UKBlues Federation Crowdfunding Campaign Update for LaVendore Rogue

UKBlues Federation Crowdfunding Campaign Update for LaVendore Rogue

 

 

 

The crowdfunding campaign set up by the UK Blues Federation (UKBF) to raise funds to help LaVendore Rogue, winners of the 4th UKBlues Challenge, with their costs representing the UK at the 34th International Blues Challenge in Memphis in January 2018 and the 8th European Blues Challenge in Hell, Norway in March 2018, has got off to a fantastic start with more than £4,200 having been raised in just over two weeks since the campaign started.

In addition to what has been raised so far by the crowdfunding campaign, UKBlues has donated directly to LaVendore Rogue the sum of £1,500 to give them some working capital to start booking accommodation in Memphis etc.

With this contribution from UKBF, the total pledged and/or received is just short of £6,000, nearly 75% of the initial crowdfunding target of £8,000.

The UK Blues Federation is delighted that there has been such a great response to date and urges everybody to visit the crowdfunding page – HERE  – where you can not only make a pledge to support LaVendore Rogue but also get your hands on some great, exclusive rewards for doing so!

For the UK Blues Federation, Dave Raven, Treasurer, said, ‘We are very pleased to be able to make this substantial contribution towards the significant costs that LaVendore Rogue face to get to and compete in both Challenges. It is yet another example of the UK Blues Federation ‘putting their money where their mouth is’ and supporting and promoting blues in the UK.’

Joel Fisk of LaVendore Rogue said: ‘We really appreciate this – it’ll be a massive help getting the ball rolling, so thank you so much to the UK Blues Federation!’

UKBlues Federation Crowdfunding Campaign Update for LaVendore Rogue

It is not too late to get involved and make your contribution by visiting our crowdfunding page so if you have not donated, please have a look and see what great rewards are on offer in return for your financial support! Being part of the adventure that will take LaVendore Rogue to Memphis and Hell is Just a Click Away – CLICK HERE

UKBlues Federation Crowdfunding Campaign Update for LaVendore Rogue

Here is a very special message from the Rogues themselves!

 

UKBlues Federation Crowdfunding Campaign Update for LaVendore Rogue

LaVendore Rogue Needs Your Help To Represent The UK

LaVendore Rogue Needs Your Help To Represent The UK

LaVendore Rogue Needs Your Help To Represent The UK. How can you help to get the UK Blues Challenge winners to Memphis, USA ad Hell, Norway? Easy! pop over to the Crowd Funding page and pledge your support. There are lots of fabulous rewards to choose from every time you pledge they will please all the rogues who love LaVendore Rogues interpretation of the Blues.

Raising funds to contribute towards the costs of LaVendore Rogue representing the UK at the 2018 International and European Blues Challenges. The band are looking to raise £8,000 Please NOTE: This project is using Flexible funding and will receive all pledges made by 12:00pm 18th December 2017

Announced recently, UK Blues Challenge winners LaVendore Rogue will be representing the UK when they join more than 250 other acts from all over the world at the 34th International Blues Challenge (IBC) in Memphis, USA organised by the Blues Foundation between 16th and 20th January 2018.

 LaVendore Rogue Needs Your Help To Represent The UK

They will also compete in the 8th European Blues Challenge (EBC) in Hell, Norway organised by the European Blues Union on 15th, 16th and 17th March 2018 in which 21 bands from across Europe will take part.

LaVendore Rogue Needs Your Help To Represent The UK

LaVendore Rogue Needs Your Help To Represent The UK

On the 23rd October 2017, as part of UKBlues Federation mission to support the Blues in the UK, we launched a Crowd Funding campaign to raise funds towards the considerable costs which will be incurred by the LaVendore Rogue representing the UK at the 2018 IBC & EBC.

As we as providing financial support to LaVendore Rogue the crowdfunding page also offers a huge range of rewards which you can get in return for your pledge.

 

LaVendore Rogue Needs Your Help To Represent The UK

So don’t delay, visit the Crowd Funding page today

HEAR FROM THE ROGUES THEMSELVES

LaVendore Rogue Needs Your Help To Represent The UK

 

 

Kaz Hawkins Band Back On Tour Waving Goodbye

Kaz Hawkins Band Back On Tour Waving Goodbye

Kaz Hawkins Band Back On Tour Waving Goodbye

As many will have read with sadness Kaz Hawkins Band will be no more after the last tour. Kaz and her band, have entertained us in small venues, large venues, festivals and more. Kaz has the power and artistry so that her voice makes you laugh, sigh and cry. The band takes you on a rollercoaster ride always thrilling whenever and where ever she steps on the stage. Kaz may lead from the front with a swish of her skirts a flick of her hair none of the acclamations would be possible without her amazing band. The rhythm section are the brothers  Ján and  Peťo Uhrin joining the guitar, Nick McConkey,
This is your final chance to hear the band the won the 2017 European Blues challenge and semi-finalists at the International Blues Challenge in Memphis.  Kaz Hawkins Band will be talked about long after the final notes have faded away, whenever you meet up with lovers of blues people will say do you remember when Kaz sang at the festival or blues club.
These are the final few dates, Book Your Tickets show Kaz your love and support.
25/10/2017 WOLVERHAMPTON  The Robin 2  BOOK TICKETS
26/10/2017 CHELTENHAM   The Bacon Theatre     BOOK TICKETS
27/10/2017 SHEFFIELD        The Greystones BOOK TICKETS
28/10/2017 NOTTINGHAM  Farnsfield Village Hall     BOOK TICKETS
02/11/2017 BARNOLDSWICK  Music and Arts Centre       BOOK TICKETS
03/11/2017 AMSTERDAM   P&O Blues Cruise       BOOK TICKETS
08/11/2017 WORTHING   Worthing Pier    BOOK TICKETS
09/11/2017 MILTON KEYNES The Stables     BOOK TICKETS
10/11/2017  RUNCORN  Brindley Theatre      BOOK TICKETS
11/11/2017  OLDHAM  Playhouse 2            BOOK TICKETS
12/11/2017  BROADSTAIRS  Sarah Thorne Theatre      BOOK TICKETS
18/11/2017 SWITZERLAND Lucerne Blues Festival BOOK TICKETS
Kaz Hawkins voice will not fall silent as she will continue with her solo career after a short break from the toils of being on the road with her band.
Bluesdoodles has followed her career: here is a selection of reviews
Kaz Hawkins @ The Tunnels, Bristol HERE
European Challenge – HERE
Albums:
Don’t You Know (solo) HERE
Feelin’ Good HERE
Get Ready HERE
In Conversation:
Talking about Feelin’ Good and More – HERE

UKBlues Federation Hosts Challenge at The Cavern

UKBlues Federation Hosts Challenge at The Cavern

UKBlues Federation Hosts Challenge at The Cavern

UKBlues Federation Hosts Challenge at The Cavern

 

 

Long before the 10th September 2018 dawned the excitement of holding the 4th UKBlues Challenge in The Cavern Club, Liverpool was causing a wave of anticipation throughout social media. On the 7th September slowly increasing in numbers a frame appeared on Facebook. People showing their support by having their profile picture framed with I’M SUPPORTING  THE 4TH #UKBLUESCHALLENGE.

The atmosphere was redolent with the past glories that have been played out at the original Cavern. Tourists were buzzing, selfies were being taken as the board of UKBlues Federation set the space up. The bands arrived full of energy and expectation. The sound guys did everything to ensure the sound checks went smoothly. The venue was in the WiFi free zone of the basement dark and already hot. The mood was electric, as the queues formed outside of blues fans who were delighted to be spending a Sunday afternoon with five bands that representing the variety of angles across the U.K today. Bringing the Blues back to the Cavern 60 years on…

The five bands were given thirty minutes to play the music they love and to get the chance to represent the UK in Memphis at International Blues Challenge and in Hell, Norway at the European Blues Challenge; stepping into the shoes vacated by Kaz Hawkins Band who won and went on to fly the flag of modern Blues being played and enjoyed by diverse audiences. The judges were ready and waiting. The six wise listeners who all love the blues as artists, promoters and DJ’s. The Six were, Victor Brox, Connie Lush, Rosy Greer, Kaz Hawkins, Chris Powers and Nick Westgarth.

 

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

The five bands now knew the running order

 

The venue was, hot dark and steamy. The audience on the edge of their seats with anticipation as Ashwyn Smyth (Chair UKBlues Federation) opened proceedings. With Elles’ first note the 2018 challenge was underway.

UKBlues Federation Hosts Challenge at The CavernElles Bailey debut album is aptly named Wildfire. Elles and her band were like a wildfire burning up the stage. They filled their thirty-minute set with a windswept melee of originals. With country Blues rocked up everyone knew that this was going to be a great live session of blues interpreted by a rising star.  The set was polished as the musicians surrounded her with a hug of sound for Elles to bounce from and deliver the lyrics.  First, up is always difficult. Elles used every note to her advantage setting the bar very high.  The audience whooped and cheered they loved the set. The bands following knew that they had to do not their best but their very best were they ready for the challenge?

Next up with a quick changeover, were The Rainbreakers.  This is rocky blues full of panache and UKBlues Federation Hosts Challenge at The Cavernswagger. Ben on vocals and lead guitar was on fire. His rocky blues electrified the audience. Playing with passion, determination and driving the blues home. They were enjoying their moment, as they interspersed the rockier edge with slower numbers showing the deep blues depths that are the undercurrent fueling the Rainbreakers.  Their number Heart of Gold certainly stood out. A performance that the audience really enjoyed as they warmed to this young band from Shrewsbury who left them wanting more.  The performance like Elles Bailey gave the judges plenty of food for thought.

The energy and fantastic performances that all five acts put in were spell bounding. Anyone of the bands could have represented the UK in Europe & USA. The commitment they demonstrate to Blues and live music is astounding, between them they had driven over 1,000 miles to get to the Cavern and had the prospect of the return journey at the end of the event

UKBlues Federation Hosts Challenge at The CavernUKBlues Federation Hosts Challenge at The CavernNext up, were the winners from the eight bands that played at The Great Rhythm and Blues Festival over Bank Holiday weekend as part of the Jessica Foxley Unsigned Acts project.  Introducing the band was Paul & Margaret Foxley, Robert J. Hunter had only a couple of weeks to prepare as they brought their urban blues to the Cavern. Like the other bands, they were so excited to be playing at such an iconic venue.  A trio that delivered an authentic modern blues sound.  The vocals at times overpowered the sound which is a small point as the sound they were creating was rollicking fun.  Another act that smiled and delivered the blues and gave the judges something to ponder over.

UKBlues Federation Hosts Challenge at The CavernThe fourth band of the Challenge was LaVendore Rogue. What a stellar set, Joel Fisk once again demonstrating his skills as a blues guitarist. You can always count on front man JoJo to put on a show and tonight they did. The audience reaction was loud and excited them. They were lapping up the music that the band delivered. Not pure blues but every song has deep roots into the heritage of the blues from Charlie Patton and beyond.  Leaving the stage the judges had another band to consider before the final act that had to follow that barnstorming session.

UKBlues Federation Hosts Challenge at The CavernLast, but definitely not least was Zoe Schwarz Blue Commotion. Stylish, sophisticated blues with a jazzy edge. High-quality authentic blues. The title track of their current album, This Is The Life I Choose captured the life and motivation of musicians who play their music live.  Their performance of Angel of Mercy was one of the best I have ever heard Zoe sing and Blue Commotion were spot on with every note and the crafted spaces. What a rousing finale and I am so glad I was not a Judge.

Five Acts, raffle tickets about, prizes handed out and the success of the Minute auctions. The final votes had been counted and verified.

The Winner is: …….. As Dave Raven and Ashwyn Smyth handed over the responsibility of presenting the trophy to last year’s Challenge winner Kaz Hawkins.  The baton, well stylish trophy really, was presented to LaVendore Rogue. They now will be representing the UK in Memphis and Hell.

UKBlues Federation Hosts Challenge at The Cavern

Closing the challenge with a party feel was a mighty jam. The stage was filled with the winning band, joined by Connie Lush, Kyla Brox, Kaz Hawkins and the mighty voice and trumpet of Victor Brox. What a resounding end to a challenge that will be long talked about as the blues sung out loud live at the Cavern once more.

UKBlues Federation Hosts Challenge at The Cavern

 

Five Excited Bands Talking About 4th UK Blues Challenge

Five Excited Bands Talking About 4th UK Blues Challenge

Five Excited Bands Talking About 4th UK Blues Challenge

 

Five Excited Bands Talking About 4th UK Blues Challenge

 

 

Five Excited Bands Talking About 4th UK Blues Challenge. Who are the five excited bands talking about 4th UK Blues Challenge? They are Zoe Schwarz Blue Commotion; LaVendore Rogue, The Rainbreakers ; Elles Bailey  and Robert J. Hunter. The fifth band added to the list rose to the Jessica Foxley unsigned challenge having played on the main stage at  Great British Rhythm and Blues Festival.   

 

Five Excited Bands Talking About 4th UK Blues ChallengeFive Excited Bands Talking About 4th UK Blues ChallengeTell us what it means to Zoe Schwarz Blue Commotion to have been nominated to participate in the challenge with the chance of representing the UK in Hell, Norway and Memphis U.S.A in 2018?

 ZSBC: Firstly, the fact that the number of our peers nominating is so large gives real credibility to the artists involved, so we are also proud about that.    We are also proud to be nominated as we see it as a recognition of our original music, concept and style.  We don’t write the songs to any kind of formula or to fit in with any cliche or pre-conceived ideas of what defines blues in 2017. Read more…..

Five Excited Bands Talking About 4th UK Blues ChallengeFive Excited Bands Talking About 4th UK Blues Challenge

Tell us what it means to LaVendore Rogue to have been nominated to participate in the challenge with the chance of representing the UK in Hell, Norway and Memphis U.S.A in 2018?

LVR: We’ve been to hell and back a few times over the years, and playing in the states has to be a dream of any UK musician, so it’s an honour to be considered for the UK British Blues Challenge – we’ve been working hard over the last few years, and it’s great to see its been recognised by the UK Blues Federation. Read More …

Five Excited Bands Talking About 4th UK Blues ChallengeFive Excited Bands Talking About 4th UK Blues Challenge

Tell us what it means to The Rainbreakers to have been nominated to participate in the challenge with the chance of representing the UK in Hell, Norway and Memphis U.S.A in 2018?

RB: We were overwhelmed to have been nominated, especially when we don’t really consider ourselves to be a blues band as such. We think it shows willingness from the scene to accept the new approach to the blues that some of the younger bands of today are displaying. Obviously we would be thrilled to go through to the European and American challenges especially as we are hugely influenced by a plethora of bands from the states! Read More….

 

Five Excited Bands Talking About 4th UK Blues Challenge

Five Excited Bands Talking About 4th UK Blues Challenge

Tell us what it means to Elles Bailey to have been nominated to participate in the challenge with the chance of representing the UK in Hell, Norway and Memphis U.S.A in 2018?

EB: Love the fact that European Challenge at Hell – didn’t know it existed on Earth. I am chuffed to bits to be performing in the Challenge this year. I am a newbie on the scene over the last twelve to eighteen months I have been quickly accepted in the Blues community. It has just exceed my expectations, definitely delighted to be performing in Liverpool and looking forward to seeing the other acts. It is definitely going to be a great night. Read More…

 

Five Excited Bands Talking About 4th UK Blues Challenge

Five Excited Bands Talking About 4th UK Blues Challenge

Tell us what it means to Robert J. Hunter Band to have been nominated to participate in the challenge with the chance of representing the UK in Hell, Norway and Memphis U.S.A in 2018?

RHB: We are a struggling band on the blues scene, if we are even on the blues scene is up for debate. We work very hard and we are playing the long game, enjoying every step of the way. But to have an opportunity like this is an absolute honour, we have been given a chance and we promise we won’t disappoint. Thank you to JFU and UKBlues Federation for believing in us.. the opportunity to be able to play somewhere called Hell is exciting on it’s own. Read More…

More about The UK Blues Challenge

What is the UK Blues Challenge (UKBC)?

An annual event organised by the UK Blues Federation (UKBlues) at a different location in the UK at which a number of bands/acts compete in front of a panel of judges drawn from across the blues spectrum. The winning band/act is invited to represent the UK at the following year’s International Blues Challenge (IBC) in Memphis and European Blues Challenge (EBC) which is held in a different European country each year.

The International and European Blues Challenges are organised by, respectively, the Blues Foundation  and the European Blues Union (EBU)

We are very pleased that this year’s event will take place at the legendary Cavern Club in Liverpool on Sunday 10th September 2017 starting at 16.00. More details can be found  and how to buy a ticket for the event HERE. UKBlues is excited to be bringing the blues back to the Cavern sixty years on!

How are the contestants in the UKBC chosen?

As an Active Member of the EBU meeting the EBU’s laid down criteria (see EBC rules here) and the sole UK Affiliate of the Blues Foundation, UKBlues are honoured to be invited to create and manage the selection process to choose the band or artist who will represent the UK at these prestigious events each year.
The first stage of the process this year saw a panel of more than 250 people from across the blues spectrum in the UK which included members of UKBlues, all UK based Active Members of the EBU, members of the Independent Blues Broadcasters Association, festival and gig promoters, writers (both online and print media), musicians, fans and blues supporters etc. being invited to submit the three UK acts that they felt would best represent the UK at the EBC and IBC.

Members of this panel were asked to place their choices in order (first, second, third) and points were awarded according to the position in which the acts are placed by you.

The 4 top scoring available acts after this process was complete were invited to participate in the UKBC where the contestants will perform in front of a panel of judges who will use the same criteria to award points to the contestants as are used at the EBC and IBC.
In a new departure this year, a fifth band will be invited to participate which will be selected from the bands who have been invited by Jessica Foxley Unsigned to play at the Great British Rhythm ‘n’ Blues Festival which takes place in Colne over the August Bank Holiday weekend –  These bands are, generally, under the radar and being selected to play at Colne is a big step up for them.

The band will be chosen by a panel of representatives of the Jessica Foxley Unsigned project and will be chosen on the strength of their performance at Colne.

The winner of the UKBC will be invited to represent the UK at both the 2018 EBC and IBC.

What are the selection and judging criteria?

When making their selections, the members of the panel are asked to bear in mind the following EBC rules which apply:

  • The leader of the band must have the nationality of the country he/she represents.
  • At least 50% of the members of the contestant bands must reside in the country they represent.
  • Acts who participated in a previous edition of the EBC, but did not win, may compete again after a period of 3 years.
  • Bands of which half or more of the musicians participated in a previous EBC with another band, may compete again after a period of 3 years.
  • Bands of which less than half of the musicians participated in a previous EBC with another band, may compete again after a period of 2 years.

Contestants at the UKBC, EBC and IBC are expected to perform at least 50% original music in their set and they are awarded points using the following criteria as laid down by the EBU:

  • Originality
  • Instrumental talent
  • Vocal talent
  • Stage presence
  • Blues content

You can read the full EBC rules here

This process is the same as that which has been used in previous years and is approved by the Blues Foundation and the European Blues Union

Five Excited Bands Talking About 4th UK Blues Challenge

Robert J. Hunter Talks about 2017 Blues Challenge

Robert J. Hunter Talks about 2017 Blues Challenge

Robert J. Hunter Talks about 2017 Blues Challenge

Robert J. Hunter Talks about
2017 Blues Challenge

 

BD: Firstly, thank you for taking the time out to chat about participating in the 4th UK Blues Challenge, Blues, your music and more.

RHB: Our pleasure, this is an incredible opportunity for us.

BD: Before we start, tell us about performing at The Great British Rhythm & Blues Festival in Colne over Bank Holiday Weekend as part of the Jessica Foxley Unsigned bands.

RHB: We were lucky to have been chosen by JFU to perform and it was an amazing experience. A festival we had been trying to get onto for a long time, and it did not disappoint. We were worried that our blend of original dirty blues may not have suited, but we had the best time and received amazing feedback. So thanks to JFU again for giving us a chance.

BD: 2017, sees the fourth UK British Blues Challenge.  This year the UKBlues Federation are “Bringing The Blues back to The cavern 60 years on..” Tell us what it means to Robert J. Hunter Band to have been nominated to participate in the challenge with the chance of representing the UK in Hell, Norway and Memphis U.S.A in 2018?

RHB: We are a struggling band on the blues scene, if we are even on the blues scene is up for debate. We work very hard and we are playing the long game, enjoying every step of the way. But to have an opportunity like this is an absolute honour, we have been given a chance and we promise we won’t disappoint. Thank you to JFU and UKBlues Federation for believing in us.. the opportunity to be able to play somewhere called Hell is exciting on it’s own.

BD: What are the Blues to Robert J. Hunter Band? Do you feel British Blues has a different feel to what is being currently produced in Europe, United States and elsewhere in the world?

RHB: Our sound is rooted in British blues and RnB, but sonically is in the direction of more American southern blues. America is where it all began after all and I think it is any musicians dream to have the opportunity to play in the States. Blues-rock seems to be the chosen weapon of lots of new bands across Britain, Europe and the US, including us, it is interesting seeing how bands are taking the blues in its rawest form and creating something truly original with the pallet they have to work from.

BD: Your current album is Where I’m From; tell us a bit about the album and have you plans to return to the studio?

RHB: That album was a way for me to showcase the variety of my writing, aside from the band. Solo, just me and a guitar for a day of recording.

We are working on new material and spent a weekend in the studio recently recording all live and we are currently mixing the record, and deciding about the release. We have always struggled capturing the adrenaline and passion of a live show on record, but this time we are a step in the right direction. It’s essentially an old school rhythm and blues album wound around the raucous dirty blues people may be used to hearing from us.

BD: What do you feel The UKBlues Federation can bring to the UK Blues what would you like the Federation to be doing for Blues artists on the circuit in Britain today?

RHB: The British blues scene is really buzzing at the moment, there are more and more young bands experimenting with the blues and there are some incredible blues guitarists on the scene. Sadly, a lot of bands go unnoticed, with a lot of the same few acts working the scene with only one or two new additions now and then. There a lot of artists putting their heart and soul into their craft but struggling to make a dent into the scene. I think more opportunities for young original blues bands need to be available and I think the UKBlues Federation can and is doing that. We are very lucky to have this opportunity.

BD: If you were putting together the perfect band with members from across the years (dead or alive) who would you have playing?

RHB:
Lee Brilleaux on vocals and harp,
Big Mama Thornton on vocals
Norman Watt Roy on bass
Mitch Mitchell on drums
Bonnie Raitt on slide
Keith Emerson on Hammond
Rory Gallagher on lead guitar.
It would be chaos, but damn would it be good.

 

BD: Thank you for your time. The challenge at The Cavern on 10th September will be an amazing night of live music as we hear the five bands – LaVendore Rogue – Elles Bailey – Zoe Schwarz Blue Commotion – The Rainbreakers and Robert J. Hunter Band.

Buy Your ticket here and be part of a great night HERE.

 

UKBlues Challenge Fifth Contestant Announced