Lifetime Achievement Award Winner
Phoenix New Times 10th Annual Music Showcase 2005
Oh, how to begin the lengthy résumé of Valley blues advocate, musician, and all-around impresario Bob Corritore? On the most basic level, if you’re a fan of any kind of live music, you’ve surely visited his legendary club in central Phoenix, the Rhythm Room, which hosts everything from rockabilly to jazz, along with the notable blues performances that are its mainstay. The place has been a nightspot for decades, and Corritore, himself a harmonica maestro, first appeared there (when it was called the Purple Turtle) after he moved from Chicago to the Valley in 1981. In Chicago, he had played the blues, befriended legendary musicians like Chico Chism, Louisiana Red, and Koko Taylor, and started his own label, Blues Over Blues Records, at age 22. Once here, he worked his way into concert promotion and eventually took ownership of the Rhythm Room in 200l. “April 4, to be exact – Muddy Waters’ birthday,” recalls Corritore. Besides performing on a dozen and a half discs by notable musicians such as R.L. Burnside and Henry Gray, he’s produced a long, star-studded list of albums, many of which were recorded live at the Rhythm Room. And he’s hosted a popular weekly radio show, “Those Lowdown Blues,” for the past 21 years. (You can hear it on KJZZ 91.5 FM, from 6 to 11 p.m. every Sunday.) It’s one more testament to his unshakable energy and dedication to theValley music community. “There’s a certain way about Phoenix that just agrees with me – I just got in that groove,” says Corritore. “It’s been a write my own ticket place to be.”
At the Awards night Bob Corritore turned over his Lifetime Achievement Award to the great Chico Chism who Bob feels best represents a lifetime of musical achievement.