This Saturday, October 4th, Obamaville will feature some good old fashioned blues to headline the Hyde Park Oktoberfest. Billy Branch, one of Chicago’s top harp players, once witnessed a show in 1969 that featured the great blues players of the day. It was hosted by Willie Dixon, who was trying to get Chicago to have a show that was like the festivals in Europe and in the Eastern U.S. That show spurred his love affair with the blues and it also got him discovered by Willie Dixon. He later toured internationally with Willie and the Chicago All-Stars.
Now Billy Branch is “Bringing the Blues Back Home” to Hyde Park Bank Sound Stage at Discover Park Oktoberfest with some of today’s best blues performers. Along with Billy and the Son of Blues will be Eddy “The Chief” Clearwater, Donald Kinsey, Wayne Baker Brooks, Demetria Taylor, Billy Flynn, Nora Jean Bruso and other special surprise guests.
Billy will start the festivities at noon with a harmonica workshop. Harmonicas will be given away to the first 200 to arrive. Learn how to play harmonica in one hour or less. Guaranteed to be able to boogie in under 10 minutes of your money back.
After the workshop, there will be several non-blues acts to warm you up for the main event. The blues will start at 6:15 p.m. Below is the schedule. See the Discover Hyde Park website for more info -www.secc-chicago.org/discover-hyde-park/index.
12:00-12:45 Blues Harp Workshop
1:10-1:55 Gypsi (Reggae)
2:20-3:05 Dos Santos Anti-Beat Orquestra (Latin Cumbia)
3:30-4:15 The Damn Choir (singer/song writer)
4:45-5:45 Mathew Santos
6:15-8:00 Billy Branch Presents: Bringing the Blues Back Home
Eddy “The Chief” Clearwater is the elder statesman of the blues on this night. Eddy is one of the last of the West Side blues guitarist that emerged in the 1950s.
Donald Kinsey is the guitarist for the Kinsey Report out of Gary, Indiana. Donald’s father Big Daddy Kinsey got Donald and his brothers Ralph and Kenneth started with the blues. He’s also famous for playing with legend Bob Marley & The Wailers, Peter Tosh, Albert King and Roy Buchanan.
Demetria Taylor is the daughter of late bluesman Eddie Taylor Sr. Taylor’s vocal talents have taken her to Japan recently and she also can be found around Chicago playing all the top blues clubs. She records for Delmark Records.
Wayne Baker Brooks is the son of Chicago legend Lonnie Brooks. Wayne still plays with his father, but has started to play more on his own now. He’s been playing with his dad since 1990. He has a solo album out called “Mystery”.
Nora Jean Bruso is a vocalist from Greenwood, Miss. She was raised on blues and gospel. Her mother was a gospel singer and her father was a blues singer. She has performed at the Chicago Blues Festival as well as other festivals in Europe, the U.S. and Canada. She has been nominated for two W.C. Handy Awards.
Billy Flynn has played with just about everyone in Chicago, past and present.