Well, it has been quite a long time since our last RHYTHM & NEWS, so where to start?! Well, the big exciting news is while the Jazz Record Mart has since closed unfortunately, as most of you know, Bob Koester, the inspirational, tireless octogenarian and heart and soul of Delmark and JRM, has opened Bob's Blues & Jazz Mart. It has been temporarily located at Delmark's office for awhile now, but starting October 1st, the new home base for all of your blues and jazz CDs, LPs, 45s. 78s, DVDs, etc will be located 3419 W. Irving Park Rd, just down the street from Delmark!!
We are so fortunate that Delmark hasn't slowed down one note even in these difficult to survive blues/jazz business times! We've managed to release a steady stream of outstanding releases from our predominantly Chicago based stellar roster of blues and jazz talent. We also continue to expand on the fascinating Delmark's vinyl LP series, with new reissues and/or back in print classic recordings from J.B. Hutto (Hawk Squat,) Junior Wells (Blues Hit Big Town with Muddy Waters, Elmore James, Otis Spann,)& Robert Nighthawk (Bricks In My Pillow on Pearl.) Two of our favorite modern jazz improvisers, reedist Keefe Jackson and vibraphonist Jason Adasiewicz have teamed up for a recently released recording available on glorious LP and CD. This killer duet recording is called Rows & Rows and has been receiving rave reviews. Here is a quote from esteemed jazz critic Peter Margasak in DownBeat..."Patience, empathy and a deep affinity radiate from every track, like 2 good friends getting together to shoot the breeze. Most pals don't speak with such Shakespearean elegance."
Our latest blues release is from one of the world's most well respected real deal bluesman, the one and only Lurrie C. Bell with the Dick Shurman produced Can't Shake This Feeling. This award winning legend and dear friend to all, deservedly keeps on winning more and more awards for his head turning guitar playing, recently receiving the prestigious guitarist of the year award from LIVING BLUES Magazine. Speaking of awards, the annual Blues Blast Award winners were just announced, and although no Delmark artist won surprisingly, we had an outstanding list of nominations. Corey Dennison (New Artist Debut Album & Rising Star,) Guy King (Contemporary Blues Album & Rising Star,) Jimmy Burns (Traditional Blues Album,) Dave Weld & Imperial Flames (Rock Blues Album,) Mike Wheeler (Rock Blues Album,) & Magic Sam (Historical Album for reissue of Black Magic) were all winners in our hearts. We are very excited for upcoming blues releases from Mississippi Heat (Pierre, Inetta and crew keep on getting better and better, along with guitarists/vocalists Giles Corey and Michael Dotson, and guest sax stud Sax Gordon!) along with the much anticipated new recording from the wildly popular Chicago blues singer/entertainer supreme, Sharon Lewis!
Our favorite "young" Chicago Hot Jazz Band, The Fat Babies, are back with a hot new release called Solid Gassuh, recorded live at Pilsen's Honky Tonk BBQ, homebase to one of their long time regular weekly gigs. You can catch them swingin' their unique brand of vintage jazz every Sunday night at the HonkyTonk, and every Tuesday night at the world famous Green Mill in Uptown. The Fat Babies will be celebrating this new release on Wednesday, November 23rd at one of our favorite music venues, Fitzgerald's Roadhouse in Berwyn. Opening that show will be fellow Delmark recording artist, the ragtime piano whiz, Reginald Robinson!
On a sad note, the world lost one of the most passionate and dedicated blues fans of all, our dear friend Amy van Singel. Amy, along with her then husband, Jim O'Neal, were 2 of the main originators of Living Blues Magazine, and Amy was one of the most knowledgable blues journalists around. We are forever grateful for her life long dedication to the blues, as she has documented so much in her writing, photography, and radio shows. We will miss you dearly, Amy, aka Atomic Mama!!
- Kevin "Proud Papa" Johnson,
Delmark Records promotions, firstname.lastname@example.org, 773-539-5001