Walter “Wolfman” Washington has been a mainstay on the New Orleans music scene. He cut his teeth backing up some of the best singers and performers in New Orleans history before putting together his long time band The Roadmasters who have been burning down and burning up local and national stages since their first gigs in the 1980s. His guitar style combines both rhythm and blues, blues, New Orleans funk, and modern jazz into a way of playing that is uniquely his. His singing is emotional and heartfelt. His guitar work is intricate, intimate, and full. And in this day and age of musicians imitating the past or trying to recreate it, The Wolfman stands out as a musician steeped in the history but completely contemporary. Few musical acts, if any, do what he does. He is real, authentic, and unique.
Matthew Curry’s roots certainly run muddy-waters deep, something that’s not been lost on the guitar legends he’s had the honor of sharing the stage with over the past few years. “Curry is a phenomenal guitar player,” marvels Peter Frampton. “A highlight from my tour last year was jamming with him. He’s the next guitar hero!” Echoing that sentiment is Steve Miller, whom Curry both opened for and joined onstage during an exhilarating nine-date run in Canada as well as dates all across the US. Steve Miller declares that Curry is a “wonderful guitar player [and] great songwriter in the Stevie Ray Vaughan area of virtuosity and originality.” As much as Matthew Curry is invested in summoning the spirit of the blues — a commitment that’s in full display on the three smokin’ hot albums he’s released to date, 2011’s barn-burning If I Don’t Got You and 2014’s hard-charging testifier Electric Religion and the Newest, 2016’s Shine On — the 20-year-old guitar slinger and soulful singer from Bloomington, Illinois likes to take a much broader view of his style. “If somebody came up and asked me what I would call my music, I don’t think I would say ‘the blues,’” he admits. “And I don’t think I would say ‘rock and roll,’ either. I would actually say, ‘good music.’ Blues is my first love, but I also love ’60s rock like Cream, The Beatles, and Jimi Hendrix. I’m also into things like Southern rock, Chet Atkins, and The Allman Brothers. All of those artists are complete musicians. They write great songs, and they sing great too. They’re just incredible.” All in all, it’s been an amazing trajectory for someone who just couldn’t get enough of that guitar stuff at age 4 to having a tune he’d written, If I Don’t Got You’s epic tour de jam “Blinded by the Darkness,” win accolades as the Best Blues Song in the International Songwriting Competition. “My dad had this beautiful Martin acoustic guitar, and he was really big into old-school blues like Muddy Waters,” Matthew recalls. “It really caught my ear. I can remember my dad sitting in his recliner and playing his acoustic while I would just sit on the floor, watching every single movement his fingers made. I was mesmerized by the sound.”
Rick Estrin & the Nightcats
B.B. King Entertainer
Best New Artist Album
Mr. Sipp – The Blues Child
Contemporary Blues Female Artist
Contemporary Blues Male Artist
Joe Louis Walker
Rock Blues Album of the Year
Joe Louis Walker – Everybody Wants a Piece
Walter Trout – Battle Scars
“Gonna Live Again” written and performed by Walter Trout
Siblings Danielle, Kris and Nick Schnebelen have a life-long connection with the blues. Growing up in Kansas City, MO, the trio soaked up the music of their parents, who were active in the thriving blues scene. After years of playing in separate bands, the trio decided to keep things in the family and formed Trampled Under Foot. In 2008, they headed to Memphis and ran away with First Place in the International Blues Challenge. Riding the wave of support following the IBC, Trampled Under Foot was ready to take their style of power blues/rock to audiences around the world. In 2014, following a series of headlining tours and stand out performances at blues festivals all over the globe, Trampled Under Foot decided to split ways and pursue their own musical endeavors. Now, after only a year or two apart, the original band is back together and ready to reclaim their world renowned reputation as one of the best bands in the business. Don’t miss your opportunity to book or see Trampled Under Foot.