Kaz Hawkins Brings European Blues Challenge Trophy Back Home

Kaz Hawkins Brings European Blues Challenge Trophy Back Home

Kaz Hawkins Brings European Blues Challenge Trophy Back Home

 

 

Saturday the 8th April 2017 was a big day for blues in the UK because of events many miles away in Horsens, Kaz Hawkins Brings European Blues Challenge Trophy Back HomeDenmark, the venue for the 7th European Blues Challenge organised by the European Blues Union (EBU) in conjunction with the BluesKartellet of Horsens, a town described by its mayor, Peter Sorensen, as ’a city of music – with streets of blues’ and a city ‘known throughout Denmark for its concerts with renowned artists, festivals and major events’.

For the first time in the event’s history, the European Blues Challenge was won by the UK with Northern Ireland’s Kaz Hawkins Band beating off some stiff competition, particularly from Belgium’s The Bluebones who were placed second. The event saw acts from some 21 European countries competing over two nights at the Forum in Horsens, a venue which, in the past, has played host to many major names including the Rolling Stones, Madonna and Paul McCartney.

In an emotional acceptance of the trophy, Kaz first thanked the UK Blues Federation for making it possible for her and her band to take part in the International Blues Challenge, which took place in Memphis, Tennessee in late January and where the band reached the semi-finals, as well as the European Blues Challenge.

She also expressed her gratitude to the event organisers and to the judges for ‘getting’ her music which is so much a reflection both of her and her life.

In addition to the trophy, the band will also have the opportunity to play at a number of top European Blues Festivals as well as enjoying a considerably raised profile on the European Blues scene.

Kaz’s acceptance speech was full of emotion, warmth and the power of the blues.

Watch the VIDEO HERE

Kaz Hawkins Brings European Blues Challenge Trophy Back HomeBefore the results were announced on Saturday night, The European Blues Union announced the winners of the Blues Behind the Scenes Awards for 2017 which saw the Award for Production going to veteran and legendary producer Mike Vernon whose career spans many decades working with many great artists including John Mayall and Eric Clapton on the iconic Beano Album as well as many other major names over the years. Recently he has come out of semi-retirement to produce a number of albums for 21st century blues artists as well as putting together his own band with which he is touring.

Accepting the Award, Mike commented that he was knocked out to receive it but also very proud. He confirmed that he had no intention of stopping yet suggesting that if John Mayall is still touring in his 80s there was no way he (Mike) was going to quit!

Earlier in the day at the General Assembly of the European Blues Union, Dave Raven, award winning blues broadcaster, Chair of the UK’s Independent Blues Broadcasters Association and Treasurer of the UK Blues Federation, was elected to the Board of the EBU, the first time that the UK has been represented on this board and another big step towards blues in the UK being better represented in Europe.

For the UK Blues Federation (UKBlues), Ashwyn Smyth – Chair – said: ‘ We are both thrilled and very grateful that Kaz and her band have done us and blues in the UK so proud. Whilst the winning was down to Kaz and her band, we are so happy that we were able to facilitate them taking part in both Challenges and the win in Denmark is the cherry on top of the cake and can only serve to raise the profile of the blues in and from the UK!”

 

Bluesdoodles send our congratulations to Kaz Semi-finalists first in Memphis and now the Winner in Europe.

Check out review Feelin’ Good Album HERE

Check out Interview with Kaz after Memphis trip for international Blues Challenge HERE

 

Kaz Hawkins Brings European Blues Challenge Trophy Back Home

 

UK Blues Challenge 24th October 2015

The Four Bands at The Challenge on 24th October 2015 The Boom Boom, Club Sutton

and visit UK Blues Federation Subscribe to the new You Tube Channel HERE

ChallengePoster

A selection panel created by UKBlues formed of nearly 200 musicians, writers, promoters, venues, festivals, radio presenters, PR/promotions, agents, record labels, and fans, including all UK Active Members of the European Blues Union (EBU) and representatives of the UK’s previous European Blues Challenge (EBC) contestants has chosen four artists to compete in the latest UK Blues Challenge.

The top four acts available to compete have been invited to take part in the UK Blues Challenge, which is being jointly promoted by EBU Active Member Pete Feenstra and UKBlues and which will take place on Saturday 24th October 2015 at the Boom Boom Club in Sutton in front of a panel of judges drawn from within the blues community chosen by UKBlues and Pete Feenstra, but who, for obvious reasons, will remain confidential until after the Challenge. They will use the same criteria to award points to the contestants as is used at the EBC.

The acts in order of appearance on the 24th are:

19.45 – 20.15 – Katie Bradley

20.30 – 21.00 – Malaya Blue

21.15 – 21.45 – Brothers Groove

22.00 – 22.30 – Red Butler

UKBlues congratulates the acts on their selection to take part in the UK Blues Challenge.
For more details about the UK Blues Challenge and how you can pre-book your tickets visit Pete Feenstra’s site or call +44 (0) 20 8791 9078

The winner of the UK Blues Challenge will represent the UK at the 6th European Blues Challenge, organised by the EBU, and which will take place in Torrita di Siena, Italy on 7-8-9th April 2016.

ebc

This is what Babajack says about the European Challenge having represented the UK at The EBC in 2012

UKBlues: The Federation Representing UK Blues

LogoUKB

UKBlues: a new Federation to represent UK Blues and lead on the UK entry to the European Blues Challenge

UKBlues is a new organisation, one that is already an active Member of the European Blues Union (EBU). The EBU promotes Blues music, in all its forms, supporting the many long standing efforts of musicians, organisations, associations, venues, companies, and
individuals in Europe. UKBlues is taking on that role for the UK and working with the EBU
and stakeholders worldwide in the interests of British Blues music. Our work is approved
by our patrons, British Blues legends Paul Jones and Mike Vernon.

The Blues and Blues in the UK

The Blues is a historic, significant and timeless art form, and one with a lively
contemporary scene. It is a form of music which, whilst always respecting its African
American roots, now enjoys a world wide profile and an increasingly interconnected
community spanning venues, festivals, media and more. British Blues has long enjoyed a
foremost place in the world of music dating back to the British Blues Explosion in the
1960’s.

UKBlues – what we will do?

It is the goal of UKBlues to build upon this profile and legacy to the benefit of all. Our ongoing activities to this end will be many and varied. We believe greater co-operation and interaction between stakeholders both here and abroad will facilitate, amongst many other things, greater opportunities for artists and bands internationally, not least in terms of
airplay and gig/festival outreach. We also aim, through our website and newsletters and
other communications, to be an important information resource.

6th European Blues Challenge

One immediate priority, within these broader aims, is the 6th European Blues Challenge
(EBC) organised by the EBU, and which will take place in Torrita di Siena, Italy on 7-8-9
April 2016. UKBlues is honoured and delighted to be appointed by the EBU to operate the
selection process for the UK, the UK Blues Challenge.

The UK Blues Challenge

A selection panel has been created by UKBlues formed of nearly 200 musicians, writers,
promoters, venues, festivals, radio presenters, PR/promotions, agents, record labels, and
fans, including all UK Active Members of the EBU and representatives of the UK’s previous
EBC contestants. Each member of the panel has been asked to nominate three suitable
artists and bands for the challenge as the first stage of the selection process. They have
been asked to place their three selections in order (first, second, third) and UKBlues will
award points according to the position in which the acts are placed.
This first stage of the selection process closes on the 21 stAugust. Soon after, the top four
acts will be invited to take part in the second UK Blues Challenge which is being jointly
promoted by EBU Active Member Pete Feenstra and UKBlues and which will take place on
Saturday 24th October 2015 at the Boom Boom Club in Sutton in front of a panel of judges drawn from within the blues community, but who, for obvious reasons, will remain confidential until after the Challenge.

The panel of judges will be selected by UKBlues and Pete Feenstra, the co-promoter, and
they will use the same criteria to award points to the contestants as is used at the EBC.
The winner will be invited to represent the UK at the EBC in 2016.

The voting is secret and safeguards have been put in place to ensure that there can be no
unauthorised or multiple voting and the members of the selection panel have been asked
not to nominate any acts with whom they are involved.

The process being operated by UKBlues has been fully disclosed to and approved by the board of the EBU, who are happy that it is transparent and maintains the required integrity for the EBC.

More information

UKBlues Website: LINK
UKBlues Facebook: LINK
UKBlues Twitter: LINK