The Road to Memphis
On Sunday the ninth of April in 2017 I went to my first blues competition. It was a very jovial, bouncy, happy group of people who simply adore the Blues. I had been building up this sort of nervous anxiousness since I entered the competition, and it all drained away as soon as I entered the door of the bar where everyone was.
This week I'm going on about the competition, who is throwing it, the contestants, and the winner. Next week I'll going on about where we stayed afterword. It’s a lovely place in Stillwater, Mn called, “The Water Street Inn”.
The competition is called, “Road to Memphis’ because the winner gets to go there and compete in an international blues competition organized by the Blues Foundation (link). Which I think will be great when I win next year. Imagine going to the place where so many great musicians from all over the world are going to play and be able to throw yourself into the mix with them. I think it would be very influential to do and be apart of.
The Minnesota Blues Society(link) is an organization that’s mission is to keep the blues alive through education, celebrating the culture, and promoting the past, present, and future of Minnesota blues music. They are apart of a larger organization which I’ve mentioned called, ‘The Blues Foundation’ (link).
The contestants this year were all terrific musicians, and I am so grateful to have been able to be apart of it. Brother Jon duo consists of two members of a larger group called, ‘The Brother Jon Band’ who were winners of 2016 Famous Dave’s Battle of the Bands. The next was Louisville White Lightning Curtis duo. They played a tremendous set and had people dancing in the by their tables. Mixing covers and originals for a fun porch stompin good time.
Javier Matos opened the show up and ended up winning the day with his fingerstyle old tyme originals. At one point in his show his son came up on stage and being the good dad I can see he is Javier let him sit on his lap while he finished the show. I wish him luck (like he needs it he’s terrific) and the best of days. Finally I was the last for the evening and I also took second place. (Yes, I am counting it.) I used my prewar Gibson L-1which Tommy Benz at Brickhouse Music in River falls, Wi put a none destructive jazz pick up in. It performed super. People seemed very engaged in my music, and stories. The crowd even asked me about certain songs, and remembered them enough to tell me which ones were their favorite. People even danced and all had a great time.
In the end I met several new people, played and heard some great music and am glad that I was able to hang out, listen to such great musicians.
Thanks gang for allowing me to join you on stage.
Here you will see a video of the show. I was only able to get a few minutes of each competitor and a few minutes from my songs too.
All my bestTrevor Marty