Sunday, May 8, 2016

From Steve (May 2, 2016):
VIA-BOOM..??? VIA-DOOM...???

In all the years that Highway 99 Blues Club has been located in our present (and only) location, we have had to deal with more than our fair share of disruptions; construction, viaduct, tunnel, parking, street changes, a sea wall, relocating utilities and a few that I have chosen to is not that these things do not impact the club - we know they do; just like sporting events, the weather, tax season, other shows and so on.

Ok. So what's my point? Despite all these things happening, we still stay open, still bring in shows 4 - 5 nights a week, and do all we can to help our patrons deal with whatever might get in their way.  

Last weekend was the first weekend of the Highway 99 viaduct closure - all the news sources predicted something short of the end of the world; and maybe traffic for the rush hours was bad - but what we know is that the streets were practically empty when it came time for our shows to start. There was plenty of parking and access was really not an issue for getting to and from the club.

Hopefully after this weekend things will get back to "normal." In the meantime, if you were thinking of coming to the club for shows this week - but maybe thought it might be a mess - we hope you will reconsider. It is a solid week for shows: starting with Drummerboy on Wednesday, followed by the debut of the Harmonius Funk Band (crazy fun funk show!), then the Mark DuFresne Band on Friday and closing the week with the 2015 WBS Best Blues Act; The Hot Wired Rhythm Band - who was also just announced as part of the Winthrop Rhythm & Blues Festival line-up in July.

As always; thank you for your continued support. Consider this a little nudge to hit the club this week sometime. We appreciate it.

As James Brown said; "let's make everything all right."

Friday, April 29, 2016

The Return of Big Sark's Drum Head

Here's a good ole Highway 99 story with a funny twist. Some of you may remember the story of the Stolen Steve Sarkowsky Drum head. Yes it is true, our founder's drum head, which has hung on the wall among the club memorabilia for many years, went missing about 9 months ago. Some of you may remember being questioned by me. I May have even interrogated a few you "usual suspects" lightly or beyond. Well, I am proud to announce that Big Sark's drum head has been returned to us, interestingly enough, by our brother Eric Elliott. You see, Eric was diagnosed with liver cancer last year. He spent much of his hospital time here in Seattle as well as Las Vegas. Our 99 friends have a unique sense of humor in times of need and often go to extreme lengths to bring a smile to the faces that could use it the most. Well, Eric's got a friend who thought it a funny prank to steal something out of Eric's favorite club in an effort to bring a smile to his face while he was shacked up in the hospital. Good ole Eric Elliott returned the drum head after we had a very successful fundraiser for him just two weeks ago. When questioned by me as to "Why didn't you return this earlier??!!", Eric looked at me funny and simply said, "I've been in the hospital fighting cancer, man!" So I gave him a pass!

You can help a brother a out by contributing to the Go Fund Me campaign that folks are using to help defray the medical bills - every little bit helps:

Thank you to all of the bands, friends and family who have supported Eric here at our fundraiser and the many events on his behalf throughout the city. Eric is a true Seattle gem, who has devoted many years of his life to preserving and progressing rockabilly and rock n roll music here in Seattle. We look forward to many more years with our brother..... Just as long as his buddies stop stealing our shit, man!!!

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Mckinley Wike - "Mack" - was the co-founder of the band Mutha Knows Best, formed 15 years ago. Music was among his life's passions. He was the band's drummer and was one of the reasons they rose to prominence among music fans throughout the Pacific Northwest. Playing at Highway 99 several times and bringing the house down with "True D Funk", he will be remembered for his smile, his kindness, his loving wife Diane (#1 MKB Fan), and his children. Mckinley is probably organizing a gig in Heaven. Rest In Peace.

Thursday, March 10, 2016

New Menu Items, More South For Your Mouth!

From Ed:
Well, this year has seen many cool upgrades and developments down here at the club. It's been fun kickin' this joint up a notch. In the past month we've been running some new food specials and testing out some ideas. I'd like to share a few new menu items that we think are going to make the final cut, and a couple that already have. First, we have added one new salad and one entrée to our core menu. After much conversation with many of you, we have come to realize that we should have more vegetarian and vegan options on our menu. Ladies and gentlemen I'd like to introduce the Roasted Beet and Goat Cheese Salad: Fresh roasted red and golden beets, goat cheese and candied pecans, on a bed of mixed greens, tossed in a raspberry vinaigrette. Please request no goat cheese to make this bad boy vegan friendly. On the entrée side, the Bourbon St. Pork Loin has been dominating the menu in recent weeks: two pan-seared pork medallions sautéed with a rich house made bourbon gravy, topped with red onions and served with our garlic whipped potatoes.

Here are a few items that we are running as specials this week. Come on down, have a taste and let us know what you think.

Creole Tofu
Blackened tofu, sautéed in a Cajun sauce, with a mix of greens, onion, broccoli and carrots, and red beans, finished with our cilantro, jalapeño lime sauce and served over rice.

Mississippi Roast
Boneless chuck roast, massaged in our own 99 rub and seared to hold the flavors in. Slow roasted, in our homemade southern style buttermilk dressing. Served with garlic mashed potatoes and seasonal vegetables.

Pork Ribs, Half or Full Rack
Marinated overnight, our baby back pork ribs are slow braised and fall off the bone. Served with skillet cornbread and rice and beans.

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Pahk Ya Cah!

(originally published Feb. 24, 2016)
From Ed:
This year has been extraordinary for us down at the club. After a, "too close for comfort" scare with our lease that consumed much of our attention and energy last year, we have been able to bounce back with many highly attended shows. The remodel, top-shelf booking and some anticipated menu changes have added to your interest in visiting this ole juke joint. The biggest factor in our year so far has been your continued support of the club and the alliance that we have formed with the musicians who grace our stage. Trust me, I am very aware of the challenges that you face as you make your plans to get here. In route to Highway 99 Blues Club, you have been tasked to navigate various construction projects throughout the city. As it seems, the closer that you get to the club, the denser these projects have become, at times even right at our front door. Most of all, Steve and I want to say thank you very much for your continued support throughout this. You have all been at our side consistently and we are proud that you won't let any of this get you down. Together, we are not going to forgo the experience of live music, in the city's premier Blues venue.

Good news on the horizon. As the seawall construction project moves north, parking spaces will be opening up again on the west side of Alaskan Way. The parking spots across the street will be back this upcoming weekend. Directly across the street, on the west side of Alaskan Way. The spots that begin at the end of Pier 51, The Big Wheel, and south on the same side of the street will be opening up beginning this coming weekend. These are available to park and are well lit for your safety and that of your vehicle. We also have our spaces back in the lot in front of the club. (The Puget Sound Energy project has been completed.) One note, very important, do not park at the area in between our block and the Public Storage building. (The Union street pedestrian pass through). In recent weeks, Seattle Parking Enforcement has been ticketing there, and the tickets are steep. As always, I am available to walk any of you back to your cars at the end of the night. With all of the construction and police presence down here, I have not heard of any incidents of concern. However, throughout the years, single women, some of our elder clientele and Andrew Cloutier feel a stronger sense of safety when escorted by a handsome gentleman in a suit. Don't hesitate to ask me, there's a reason we call the club home, and you are our guests, or family!! That's all the info for now, I'll see you this weekend down at the club. - Ed

Social Media?

(originally published Feb. 17, 2016)
Hey! This is a good place to keep in touch with us and get all the info. you need about All Things Highway 99 Blues Club, but we're also on social media where we often post info. and articles to Facebook and Twitter, photos to Instagram, or as we sometimes call them, "snapchat and the instaface..." But seriously, folks... While all the essential info. is on the website and here on the weekly email, sometimes shows are announced and go on sale first on Facebook and Twitter, and our Instagram stuff isn't always the same stuff we post anywhere else. We also have a YouTube channel! Check 'em out. The links above take you to our pages. Here's a recent video from our YouTube channel, the Hank Shreve Band doing "Mellow Down Easy" a couple weeks ago:

Monday, February 15, 2016

Blues Music Awards

(originally published Feb. 11, 2016)
From Big Sark aka Steve:
The 37th annual Blues music Awards are coming May 5th and the list of nominees has just been posted. As most of you know, Highway 99 tries to compete with the big boys when it comes to booking shows. We are limited to some degree by being in the Pacific Northwest, and also due to the lack of clubs that follow along the I-5 corridor, down to San Diego and then heading east. Over the years we have done a pretty good job at bringing acts to our stage who are - let's be honest- within driving range of the club. So it should not come as a surprise when I tell you that 17 of the acts that have played the club are NOMINATED THIS YEAR IN 26 CATEGORIES FOR BMA'S... boom,boom,boom, boom....(That's a John Lee Hooker Boom there, not an Ed Maloney Boom!) Not only are there artists from our very own corner of the world; Lisa Mann, Jimi Bott and Karen Lovely; but just look who not only played at Highway 99 but is also nominated; James Harman, Jason Ricci (as in Grammy award winning Jason Ricci!!) Sugaray Rayford, Walter Trout - who made an amazing recovery from health issues this past year; Duke Robillard, Rick Estrin and the Nightcats, Ian Siegel, Nikki Hill, Brandon Sanitini, Fiona Boyes, Terry Hanck, Kid Anderson, Bob Corritore and John Nemeth. Pretty Impressive right? And what's really slammin' is that many of these acts will be hitting the highway over the next few months.

We wish all the artists listed here and all the other acts nominated the best of luck at the BMA's.  Keep your eye on the prize; or in this case - our calendar...we are loading it up and bringing the best in blues to Seattle.