Looking back, we’re tickled over how many truly awesome nights, days, and moments have “hit the highway” in 2008. Taking a look back…
The Jam: the house band of Justin Kausal-Hayes, Scotty Harris, Lisa Ramaglia, Andrew Cloutier, and Eric Brisson brought many of our most memorable musical moments.
Resident Artists included Lee Oskar & Friends, Brian Nova, Son Jack Jr., Purty Mouth, JD Hobson & Friends, the Dudley Taft Blues Overkill, Gertrude’s Hearse, the Satellite 4, John “Scooch” Cugno’s Delta 88 Revival, the Danny Massure Breakdown, and the Belltown Soul Band.
Purty Mouth introduced us to a bunch of new (to us) artists such as Golden Robot Army, MoZo, Zoe Muth, Jerry & the Philbillies, Southbound Union, Thornton Creek, Sourmash Stevedores, the Half Brothers, Squirrel Butter, and Strange Jerome.
CD Release Parties were thrown by Kim Field & the Mighty Titans of Tone, the James Howard Band, the Red Hot Blues Sisters, Ruby Dee & the Snakehandlers, Fiona Boyes, Tim Casey & the Bluescats, Chubby Carrier & the Bayou Swamp Band, Polly O’Keary & the Rhythm Method, and Robin Moxey.
Locally-Based Artists continued to be our backbone. If our keyboard forgets you here, our heart does not. Nick Vigarino, Becki Sue & Her Big Rockin’ Daddies, Doctorfunk, Paul Green & Straight Shot, , the Crossroads Band, Brian Butler, the Type A Band, John Stephan, Double Scotts on the Rocks, Little Bill & the Bluenotes, Robin Moxey, Buckets of Rain, Tim Casey & the Bluescats, Sam Marshall, Randy Norris, Lady A & the Baby Blues Funk Band, Alex Weed, Lonesome Shack, Roger Rogers, Michael Kahler, Ratfish Bone, David Gordon, Jevon Powell, Bump Kitchen, Kim Field & the Mighty Titans of Tone, Nearly Dan, Dirty Dale, Audio Pirati, the Fabulous Roofshakers, the Dandelion Greens, the Randy Oxford Band, Chris Stevens’ Surf Monkeys, Kim Archer Band, Chris Nelson, and Junkyard Jane.
Regional / Pacific Northwest Artists included David Vest, Robbie Laws’ Bigger Blues Band, Kevin Selfe & the Tornadoes, the Joe McMurrian Quartet, the Insomniacs, the Strangetones, Kolvane aka the Rose City Kings, Lloyd Jones Struggle, the Fat Tones, and the Essentials.
We welcomed Fiona Boyes & the Fortune Tellers to the Pacific Northwest by way of Australia, and said goodbye to Johny Broomdust as he headed east.
We shared a warm hello – and had to say a sad goodbye – to Sean Costello, as his Highway 99 debut was followed by his untimely passing just a couple months later. After his show here, Sean hung out until breakfast the next morning, bulls***ing with staff, watching movies, sharing jokes, getting to know us, and we all looked forward to his next tour. We'll miss him, a remarkable young man who represented, by our estimation, an integral part of the present and future of Blues music and a good friend.
Little Bill led a memorial and benefit concert for Hans Ipsen that only those who were there will ever know about. Hans was a central part of the rhythm & blues scene in the Puget Sound for many years, and we are humbled to have hosted the occasions which honored his impact on the music community.
Musicians rallied behind Mark Whitman, threw a marathon show to kick in for his hospital bills, and our club was graced with his return to the concert stage just a few weeks later.
Roots/Americana/Rockabilly music Hit the Highway in the form of Billy Duane & the Creepers, the Juke Joint Gamblers, the Rainieros, the Souvenirs, Johnny Mercury, Dragstrip Riot, James Hunnicutt & the Revolvers, Hard Money Saints, the Load Levelers, Dr. Hellno & the Yesmen, Hot Roddin’ Romeos, Marshall Scott Warner, Wired, Little Ray & the Uppercuts, the Busted Downs, the Haul Off And Smack Somebodys, the Black Crabs, and the Whiskey Wailers.
Burlesque: Miss Indigo Blue and Kitten LaRue of the Atomic Bombsheels rang in 2008 at the stroke of midnight, and throughout the year our stage was graced with such lovely ladies as the Heavenly Spies, the Can Can Castaways, Sinner Saint Burlesque, the Shanghai Pearl, Ravenna Black, Meghan Mayhem, Drew Blood, and members of the Sockit Wenches.
2008 also saw the club debut of belly dancing as Bella Jovan performed interactively for the Lee Oskar & the Living Dead Halloween Show, and we had calendar girls hoop dancing for the NW Pin-Ups 4 Troops benefit.
From the theatre community, hostesses Rebecca M. Davis and Anita Goodmann held things together on some our zanier nights, including our annual “A Celebration of Pride” benefit for the Dunshee House.
Zydeco – we kicked it NOLA style with the Pine Leaf Boys, Dikki Du & the Zydeco Krew, Chubby Carrier & the Bayou Swamp Band, Mark St. Mary, Curley Taylor & Zydeco Trouble, Leroy Thomas & the Zydeco Roadrunners, Captain LeRoy & the Zydeco Locals, the Zydeco Flames, Motordude Zydeco…
Raven’s 8th Annual Jam For Cans was, as always, a huge success for Northwest Harvest and one of the most memorable nights of music all year. This venerable Who’s Who of PNW rhythm & blues produces truckloads of food and thousands of dollars for Northwest Harvest every year and we’re honored to host the occasion.
Our fundraising partnerships with Home Alive and the King County Coalition Against Domestic Violence continued to raise money, awareness, and entertain the hell out of everyone in attendance.
The Delta Roadhouse Showcase featured Alice Stuart, Orville Johnson, Terry Robb, JD Hobson and Mark DuFresne in a down-home, front porch Sunday afternoon.
Seattle N.O.W. Benefit - the Red Hot Blues Sisters, Polly O’Keary & the Rhythm Method, Lady A & the Baby Blues Funk Band, LJ Porter, Stacy Jones, and Paula Maya raised money for the Women’s Voter Project.
The Harmonica Houseparty brought the mind-boggling collective of Lee Oskar, Magic Dick, Tim Gonzales, and Jay Maybin in a once-in-a-lifetime harp extravaganza.
The Road to Memphis helped send Alice Stuart to Memphis for the International Blues Challenge. The Bluez Dawgz, Becki Sue & Her Big Rockin’ Daddies, Curley Cooke & Annette Taborn, Teri Wilson & Suze Sims, and of course the Formerlys played all day and raised some dough to send Alice to Beale Street.
The West Coast Guitar Killers Showcase featured Nick Vigarino, Robbie Laws, Tom “T-Boy” Boyle, and Tim Sherman
Slide Guitar Beyond the Blues featured Dan Tyak, Orville Johnson w/ Unsanctified Gospel Quartet, Eric Madis w/ Hawaiian slack key, Kinney Alverz on pedal steel and host, Nick doing slop jar delta funk with Rob Moitoza and Chris Leighton on rhythm.
Nationally Touring Artists included our friends Bobby Rush, Duke Robillard, Lil’ Dave Thompson, Bastard Sons of Johnny Cash, Harper, Kenny “Blues Boss” Wayne, Mem Shannon & the Membership, Nathan James & Ben Hernandez, Smokin’ Joe Kubek & Bnois King, Delta Moon, Kelly Richey, Debbie Davies, Maria Muldaur, Moreland & Arbuckle, the Terry Evans Band, Eddie “Devil Boy” Turner, Phil Berkowitz & the Dirty Cats, Jason Ricci & New Blood, Sonny Rhodes, Janiva Magness, the Chris Bergson Band, the Craig Caffall Band, Mingo Fishtrap, the Tony Coleman Band, Lydia Pense & Cold Blood, Delta Highway, Studebaker John & the Hawks, Charles van Zandt…
Whew! All we can do is THANK YOU and THE ARTISTS who make all this possible. We provide a place for this stuff to happen, we work hard to schedule a well-rounded palate of American Music with an emphasis on rhythm & blues, trying to balance the traditional comfort of the familiar with the fresh energy of the new. We try to offer an environment that’s just the right balance of cozy and gritty, uptown luster sprinkled with juke joint sawdust. The menu, we hope, uses traditional ingredients to bring a mix of stand-by dishes with ones that are new and inventive. Anyway, without an audience of music lovers who are willing to keep coming out for music they know and don’t know, and without the artists and musicians who hit the road and play it on our stage, we wouldn’t have the pleasure of doing this thing.
THANKS AND HAPPY NEW YEAR!