The Johnnie Johnson Blues & Jazz Society, Inc. Celebrating Hometown Legend, Johnnie Johnson!
Home Page Learn About Johnnie You Are Here! News Photo Gallery Sites To Visit
Sponsors Donate Contact Information

Join Us for the 14th Annual Johnnie Johnson Festival

July 11-12, 2015

NOW A FREE EVENT!!!

!

The 2015 Johnnie Johnson Festival Acts:
2015 Concert Lineup

 

Saturday Featuring:

12:30 Bill Stalnaker and Night Moves

1:30 Brazz Evans

3:00 V-Train

4:30 KWT

6:00 Roddy Barnes

8:00 The LeeBoys**

9:30 All Star Jam

 

**Due to illness Eric Lindell will be unable to make this year's event.

 

Sunday Afternoon:

12:00 Roddy Barnes

1:00 Tim Sparks

2:00 Daryl Davis

3:00 Terry Oates and the Mudcats

5:00 Samantha Fish

6:30 Bill Stalnaker and Night Moves

 

*All times are approximate*

*Schedule subject to change*

 
This event is FREE and open to the public!
Info Line:  304-363-5377
ATTENTION FESTIVAL GOERS!
SPECIAL DISCOUNT ROOM RATES
AT CLARION INN FAIRMONT LOCATION!

*Mention the festival to get the discount rate!
Click here for Details!
 
 
JOHNNIE JOHNSON:  1924-2005
The Annual Johnnie Johnson Blues & Jazz Festival has become a summer tradition!
Join us in Johnnie's hometown of Fairmont, West Virginia, as we pay tribute to the Legendary Johnnie Johnson! It was one of Johnnie's dreams that the festival named in his honor would become yet another part of his amazing musical legacy. National recording artists, as well as local and regional musicians have graced the festival's stage. This year is set to be another winner, with some truly talented musicians already booked, and more to be announced!
The Legendary Johnnie Johnson!
 
 

im Sparks has been redefining the acoustic guitar repertoire since he won the National Fingerpicking Championship in 1993 with a ground breaking arrangement of Tchaikovsky’s Nutcracker Suite. An award winning guitarist, Sparks is equally at home in four different styles of music that reflect his personality and heritage: Classical, Jazz, Deep South Blues and Jewish Music. Sparks can be regarded a master of each of these styles and he often blends them together in creative ways. Listening to his works, each has a defined stylistic framework, yet he allows different nuances from the other three worlds to “creep in” all with delightful taste and musicianship. His flawless fingerstyle technique allows him to play melodies and improvise while accompanying himself with bass lines and chords.

Sparks has earned an international reputation as one of the most innovative guitarists working today. Trained by Segovia protegee Jesus Silva at the North Carolina School of the Arts, Sparks has continued to study classical music throughout his career. His wide travels inspired his interest in European and Mediterranean styles, particularly the music of the Balkans.

In recent years, Sparks’ musical focus has come full circle, returning to the country blues and classic jazz that served as a springboard for his worldwide guitar explorations. He toured with Dolly Parton in 2005 and recorded Roots, Rags and Blues for Truefire Acoustic Guitar Workshop. Sparks released Sidewalk Blues on the ToneWood label in February 2009 and recorded Little Princess, his fifth CD for Tzadik, in New York in 2009. Post-Modern Fingerstyle Guitar was released on Truefire in 2011. Sparks released Chasin’ the Boogie, his 10th acoustic guitar recording on May 30, 2014.

Tim Sparks

http://www.timsparks.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

"Whether a searing Blues or a pounding Boogie Woogie, Daryl practices what he preaches; to make his audience happy.  'American roots' signals the arrival of a major blues voice".
–Barry Lee Pearson
Living Blues Magazine
 

 

Daryl Davis

http://www.daryldavis.com/

Daryl Davis earned his Bachelor of Music degree from Howard University, where he was a member of their famed Howard University Choir and renowned Jazz Vocal Ensemble. In addition to being a vocalist, guitarist, composer and keyboard extraordinaire, Daryl is a professional actor and author.

In 1985, 72 year-old Pinetop Perkins, one of the founding fathers of Boogie Woogie and considered to be one of the greatest Blues and Boogie pianists, selected 27 year-old Daryl Davis to succeed him in the piano and vocal slot of the Muddy Waters Legendary Blues Band.
Johnnie Johnson, Chuck Berry's original pianist, has praised Daryl's ability to master with authenticity, a style that was popular 30 years before he was born!

As a performer, Daryl Davis has worked with countless greats such as Elvis Presley's Jordanaires, The Coasters and he is a long-standing, regular player, in Chuck Berry's current band. He was the featured pianist on Cephas & Wiggins' 1992 Grammy Award winning album, Flip Flop and Fly.

As a composer, in addition to his own hits Boogie Man and Broadminded and many other originals, Daryl scored the music to the popular children's story, Abigail.

After having been with so many others helping them to do their thing in nightclubs, concert halls, festivals, recording, films, radio and television, from the United States to Europe, don't miss seeing Daryl Davis with his group doing his own thing!

 

 

 
 
Roddy Barnes

 

 

"He's like the Bruce Springsteen of boogie woogie . . . He's a man in the grips of a sensual hankering that hardly allows him a breath between the long, languid lines of his blues . . . He keeps stirring up desire until it builds to the emergency condition of "Call 911," as deadly humorous a boogie as any Long-Tall You-Know-Who ever put down." - J.D. Buhl, "Holy Soul Piano Roll," Kansas City's The New Times

 

 

 

 

“With his powerful piano style, and his world-weary, yet playful, vocals, I feel as if I’m time-traveling back to a juke joint in the 20’s on the old-timey feel of his music… He’s truly a blue-plate special in the world’s musical diner…eat him up!” Andra Faye, Alligator Records

 

www.roddybarnes.com

Roddy Barnes was born in 1963 in Blanchard, Iowa, a small rural farm town of around 100 people. His parents, Kenneth and Carol Barnes, were pig and grain farmers and some of Roddy's first memories were of many hours in the bean fields, pulling weeds. To amuse himself, Roddy would make up songs as he worked - the start to his musical creativity.
His first musical influence was church. Roddy's parents had an old upright and at age four, he began picking out hymns. Singing was also a strong passion and his first solo, "Jesus Wants Me for a Sunbeam," he performed at age five. His first music gig came at age 15 where he played and sang in a local hotel, "The Walnut Inn" in Tarkio, Missouri.
In high school, he was awarded Musician of the Year three consecutive years, the Chopin Award and the John Philip Sousa Award both two years straight, was a member of district and state band and district chorus. He received #1 ratings at the state level on solo piano, trumpet, and voice. In 1979 as a high school sophomore, he was accepted into the the United States Collegiate Wind Band which performed in New York, England, Germany, Italy, Switzerland and France.
In 1981 Roddy was awarded full scholarships to both Missouri Western State College and Kansas University. He chose MWSC. While in college, he studied classical piano, trumpet, voice, composition and theory. As a composer, he wrote an original score for "Death of a Salesman" performed at the Missouri Repertory Theatre. He also composed music for a commercial about safe sex and scored a short film. He was awarded a grant to the Aspen Music Festival where he studied under world-renowned pianist Rita Sloan-Gottlieb.
After receiving his B.A. in Classical Performance in 1988, he was awarded a scholarship to study in France under Francois Rene Duchable. While in France, he performed in blues clubs in several French cities. He was featured in a French paper called "Le Dauphine" where, it read "(he) has conquered by his talent all the music lovers of the city of the Ducs."
In 1990, Roddy applied for, and received, a scholarship to the Berklee School of Music in Boston, Massachusetts. Along with his studies, he performed blues throughout the city. Roddy returned to the midwest in 1992 and recorded his first album, "Roll with the Punches," in Kansas City, MO.
New Orleans lured him south where he was able to perform 10 gigs a week. Some of the more notable venues were Tipitinas, Maxwells Toulouse Cabaret, and The Common Ground. While in New Orleans, he recorded three more CDs -- "Unseen," "Betrayed," and "Blues Boogie and Soul." From his "Betrayed" CD, his composition, "Because of You," was recorded by the international blues act, Saffire - The Uppity Blues Women, on Alligator Records.
To advance his career, Roddy moved to Austin, Texas in 1996. He was a monthly feature on John Aielli's "Ecclecticos" on KUT radio showcasing his original songs. He also recorded his 5th CD, "Broken Wing." From this CD, another of his compositions, "Let the Gin Do the Talking," was covered by Saffire.
2004 finds Roddy in Richmond, Virginia, to collaborate with other artists. Two songs from his 6th CD, "Ballads and Barrooms," are being covered by blues artist Ann Rabson on her solo recording. (Ann is a founding member of Saffire.) The Saffire connection continues as Roddy works with another founding member, Gaye Adegbalola, performing classic blues - blues mainly from the 20's and 30's by divas such as Bessie Smith, Alberta Hunter and Ma Rainey. Further, Roddy works with Filipe Rose (the Indian of the Village People) doing musical compositions, arrangements and accompaniment. He also continues to perform solo.

 

 

Samantha Fish
http://www.samanthafish.com

Samantha Fish Spins You Around With An Emotional Wild Heart

“She snarls it, she spits it out and she could give a damn.” Goldmine

Produced by Luther Dickinson

Out on July 7th on Ruf Records

3rd Studio Release is filled up to the rim with staggering vocals,

Aching guitar riffs and thunderous drums, leaving you lifeless

Atlanta, GA – On July 7th, Ruf Records recording artist singer-guitarist Samantha Fish, will raise eyebrows with her third studio release, Wild Heart, produced by Luther Dickinson (The North Mississippi Allstars/Black Crowes). Having Samantha on guitars and Luther on various stringed instruments, they rounded out the lineup with Grammy Award-winning Brady Blade (Emmylou Harris/Bob Dylan) on drums. Special guests include Lightnin Malcolm (guitar), Sharde Thomas (drums) and Memphis session singers Shontelle Norman-Beatty and Risse Norman. The result is a stunning representation of Americana roots music.

Wild Heart was recorded in three different studios, as they trekked the backroads from Louisiana to Mississippi in the fall of 2014. Starting at Brady Blade’s Shreveport, Louisiana studio, they laid the basic rhythm tracks and vocals. Luther and Samantha then hightailed it to his Zebra Ranch Studios in Hernando, Mississippi where they had a traditional Hill Country Blues session. Then, finally, all roads lead to Memphis where the duo put the final touches at both Willie Mitchell’s Royal Studios and the legendary Ardent studios.

“I fell in love with it,” she told Premier Guitar of her growing passion for the form, “and started doing my homework by listening to the old guys like Son House and Skip James.”

Only into her mid-20s she already released two CDs, played all over the world and shared the stage with well-established to the legendary artists from Tab Benoit and Johnny Lang to Buddy Guy. Label mate and sometimes touring buddy, Mike Zito has long championed Samantha, produced her critically acclaimed albums, Runaway and Black Wind Howlin’ (2013). Samantha’s had a master’s class in a wide variety of the blues. Her work ethic is unquestioned and her love for performance is obvious.

Boys will be boys it’s a powerful thing

Better learn how to swim or learn how to drink – Bitch On The Run

All that ambition and passion paid off in 2012 when Samantha won a Blues Music Award for Best New Artist Debut for her 2011 release Runaway (Ruf Records). The wonderful critical praise, winning fans at shows and all the long hours driving came to a shining moment that put more fuel into her fire. This desire is now revealed with Wild Heart as the pivotal moment in her budding career.

Always yearning to learn, Samantha soaked in this experience like a sponge from the songwriting sessions to the final background harmonies. As her songs came together, it was suggested for her to collaborate with another songwriter she jumped the opportunity. Last summer she traveled to Nashville and wrote with accomplished songwriter Jim McCormick, whose songs have been cut by Trisha Yearwood and Keith Urban. A native of New Orleans, Jim has a flare for blues-boogie and full throttle vocalization to haunting melodies that gave Samantha a chance to growl.

“… Fish’s commanding voice holds its own against the crunching guitar riffs and driving beat.” –Elmore Magazine

Samantha and Jim wrote five of the 12 songs on the album, including the title song, “Wild Heart”, that echoes Led Zeppelin with a whiplash of a steady guitar riff. “Show Me” – a song that could easily be heard at some of New York City’s finest rock clubs – wreaks stale beer. Samantha holds her own on guitar duties on this tune as Brady Blade grinds the drums with a slow steady roll.

As the album opens she’s bashes away with “Road Runner“, a warning to others of this mean man that broke her heart. The driving guitar sounds and thunderous beat supports her voice that is smooth as honey with a sad dash of salt.

Left me waiting by a red-light, I think about him every night

Road runner, road runner – Road Runner

After wrapping basic tracks, it was off to Dickinson’s Zebra Ranch Studios via the back roads of Mississippi. Seeing the culture and environment upfront got her excited for the unknown. The result of that magical setting was a cover of Charley Patton’s, “Jim Lee Blues Pt. 1”, which fits Fish’s voice. It was an organic setting with fellow Hill Country Blues artists Sharde Thomas and longtime friend, Lightnin Malcolm. Sharde is a native Mississippian fife/drum player in the same American tradition of her grandfather Othar Turner. “This session had a whole other vibe to it. The studio is out in the country, no cell service, no distractions. You’re just surrounded by nature and guitars,” beams Samantha.

Samantha’s love for the Hill Country Blues genre started early on as her musical foundation began to build. This fiery singer-songwriter and guitarist met some of these players when she attended the King Biscuit Blues Festival at age 17. There she met Lightnin Malcolm, a guitarist who befriended the young gun and then a few years later, at Zebra Ranch, she got to record with him. “Working with Malcolm was a longtime coming as I’d known him since I was a teenager. Hearing hill country blues made me fall in love with blues music and he was one of the first artists who let me jam with him.”

“One of my favorite songs on Wild Heart is ‘Go Home’. It became so powerful and we wanted girl power, no-frills and those ladies delivered,” Samantha proudly states. It’s a quiet moment of reflection of an inner self struggle that can either be destructive or productive. The background singers, Shontelle Norman-Beatty and Risse Norman provide a soothing answer to Samantha’s tearful call.

“Maybe in a moment of clarity, I’ll do what’s right, Maybe I’ll finally swallow a bit of my own advice” – Go Home

oth Samantha and Luther wanted to make a live and honest record, capturing Fish’s emotional intensity and power trio integrity. “She is so smart and talented. It was a joy to take her under my wing and share what I’ve learned with her. Samantha brought her emotional energy from her performances which transcended into the record. The songs are very personal and she delivered. I am proud to be a part of the record”, states Dickinson. Samantha was equally satisfied with the results, “I was blown away by his ability to color a song. I stepped out of my comfort zone and I couldn’t be more proud of what we made.”

Fish is an inveterate storyteller as well. Her songs are vivid and compelling with thick guitar lines and catchy riffs. – The Morning Call

As the album comes to a close, Samantha has run the gamut of emotions. Her fingers are tired and her voice is shaking but she is able to pull out one more gem of a performance. A whispering rendition of RL Burnside’s “I’m In Love With You”. This is Samantha at her best-caressing the melody while the guitars and a slight drum beat flickers underneath her reassuring voice.

Samantha has dug her high heels in some rich musical soil with Wild Heart and is poised to reach a new level in her career. She is armed with her guitar and these songs are in her back pocket; for there is no doubt Miss Fish will aim and fire, with confidence.

To hear the four song sampler: Samantha Fish – Wild Heart Sampler

Back To Top

 

 

The LeeBoys
http://http://www.leeboys.com

The Lee Boys – Sacred Steel

The Lee Boys are one of America’s finest African-American sacred steel ensembles. This family group consists of three brothers, Alvin Lee (guitar), Derrick Lee and Keith Lee (vocals) along with their three nephews, Roosevelt Collier (pedal steel guitar), Alvin Cordy Jr. (7-string bass) and Earl Walker (drums). Each member began making music at the ages of 7 and 8 in the House of God church they attended in Perrine, FL. Here they underwent a rigorous course of training in a variety of musical instruments, including lap and pedal steel guitars. Born and raised in Miami, each of The Lee Boys grew up in the church where their father and grandfather, Rev. Robert E. Lee, was the pastor and a steel player himself.

“Sacred steel” is a type of music described as an inspired, unique form of Gospel music with a hard-driving, blues-based beat. The musical genre is rooted in Gospel, but infused with rhythm and blues, jazz, rock, funk, hip-hop, country and ideas from other nations. Influenced by the Hawaiian steel guitar fad of the 1930’s, brothers Willie and Troman Eason brought the electric lap steel guitar into the worship services of the House of God church in Jacksonville, FL. The Pentecostal congregation embraced the soulful sound, and over time this unique sound became the hallmark of the church. The pedal steel guitar was added to the mix and soon became the central instrument. The Lee Boys are part of the fourth generation of musicians in this faith.

This music form was totally unknown to the world outside the church until the mid 1990’s, when folklorist Robert Stone attended House of God services and recorded the music, as well as its history, contributing the name “sacred steel.” A series of compilations featuring artists such as Aubrey Ghent, Calvin Cooke and the Campbell Brothers, as well as the late Glenn Lee followed on legendary roots label Arhoolie Records, for whom The Lee Boys also record.

When The Lee Boys bring their joyous spiritual sound to the stage, audiences instantly recognize that this is not “sitting and listening” music: dancing, shouting out, and having fun are considered essential parts of their tradition. Founder and bandleader Alvin Lee explains “The inspiration and feeling that comes along with our music is the reason that people feel good. It is like the new music on the block and it’s just getting ready to explode!” It’s mostly original material, with a few standards and hymns the group “blueses up a little.” Audiences often dance, shout out, and always have a great time. In 2008-09 alone they performed for more than 250,000 music fans at festivals throughout the United States. In the process, their unique sound has attracted musical artists such as Bob Weir of the Grateful Dead, The Allman Brothers Band, The Black Crowes, Los Lobos, Michelle Shocked, Gov’t Mule, Derek Trucks Band w/ Susan Tedeschi, The North Mississippi Allstars, Hill Country Revue, Umphrey’s McGee, Ivan Neville’s Dumpstaphunk, Oteil & Kofi Burbridge, The Dirty Dozen Brass Band, Toubab Krewe, Victor Wooten, The Del McCoury Band and The Travelin’ McCourys- all of whom have played with the Lee Boys and/or invited them to tour with them.

The press has caught on as well, as evidenced by the USA Today review of their set at New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival in May 2008: “The Lee Boys, from Miami, rocked the blues tent with their rollicking ‘You’ve Got to Move.’ The song started slow and low but steadily picked up pace, taking on the feel and sound of a runaway train. As guitarist Roosevelt Collier plucked at his pedal steel guitar, an electric guitar mounted on a stand and played from a sitting position, audience members danced in the aisles, jumped up and down and waved their arms to the mounting melody.” As well in March 2009, Billboard Magazine wrote: “The band’s dexterity with multiple genres is its strongest point; it combines folk, soul, funk, blues, country and gospel into upbeat, steel guitar-led performances that can’t help but inspire secular and sacred revelry.”

These engaging artists work well in a variety of venues ranging from intimate club settings to performing arts centers to large festival stages. Their music attracts audiences from the jamband, folk, blues and Gospel worlds. They’ve performed throughout the United States, Canada and Europe and will continue influencing audiences worldwide with their “sacred steel”. Their tour calendar includes over 100 major festival performances, including headline stops at the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival, Memphis in May, Bonnaroo, High Sierra, Austin City Limits, Philadelphia Folk Festivals, MerleFest, DelFest, Wanee and All Good Festival. In December, 2008, the band debuted on national television with a rousing performance on NBC’s Late Night with Conan O’Brien that had the host jumping out of his chair and raving about the band.

The Lee Boys have been in the studio with The Travelin’ McCourys completing a joint album entitled “Meetin’ In The Middle” which illustrates their amazing bluegrass/sacred steel festival shows. The 6 song EP debuted at MerleFest 2010 and is now available.

Back To Top

 
 

Back To Top