2009 Chicago Blues Fest Review by IllinoisBlues.com

The 26th Chicago Blues Fest – Day Two June 13, 2009

The second day of the Chicago Blues fest started of with a short rain shower as we headed to the Front Porch Stage to hear an Earwig records tribute which included Bob Corritore, Chris James, and Patrick Rynn.

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A great set to catch was Lurrie Bell. Sitting in on harmonica was Chicago’s own Matthew Skollar. They played an intense set of real Chicago Blues.

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We caught an interesting performance by Holle Thee Maxwell followed by a set by Chicago guitarist “Killer” Ray Allison.

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Then we headed over to the Juke Joint Stage to see a set from Eden Bret. Eden was riding high after having just won 2 Blues Music Awards in May. She was also just nominated in the 2009 Living Blues Awards and received 2 Blues Blast Music award nominations. This gal is on the rise!

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Eden was followed by Mississippi Bluesman Lil Dave Thompson. Dave puts on a real show with his great guitar playing.

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Other great acts in the afternoon included Lil Ed and the Blues Imperials. This group is nominated for a Blues Blast Music Award as Best Blues Band and it was easy to see why.

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Other performers throughout the day included Cyrus Hays, Travis “Moonchild” Haddix and Samuel James.

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Rounding out the afternoon were performances by Chicago Blues guitar legend John Primer. John is the real deal and has played with almost every great Blues band in Chicago over the years. He is nominated for two Blues Blast Music Awards in his own right for Best Male Blues Artist and for Best Traditional Blues CD. He is also nominated for Best Traditional CD on the great CD Chicago Blues: A Living History along with other Chicago greats Billy Boy Arnold, Billy Branch and Lurrie Bell. The final performer we saw before the headliners was Nolan Struck and King Edward.

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As I headed to the Petrillo Band Shell photo pit it struck me that I had seen a ton of great Blues talent this day. WOW! Any of the acts during the day on any of the stages could have easily been a headliner at another festival but this was the Chicago Blues Fest and the headliners were yet to come.

First up was Walter Scott with Miss Peaches, Claudette and Miss Jessie. This was a GREAT show.

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Next up was Trudy Lynn with the Chicago R&B Kings. This lady had the crowd in the palm of her hand for the whole performance. Talk about a great backup band, WOW!

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The final act was Blues and soul legend Bettye LaVette. Bettye is one serious performer and gave the crowd a great show. A very fitting final performer for day two of the Chicago Blues Fest.

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So we again headed back to rest up for the great show on day three….Stay tuned for Day 3, next week!

Review and photos by Blues Blast Editor Bob Kieser.

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