Doubleheader: Blind Boys Of Alabama and John Popper and the Duskray Troubadours
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From World Cafe Live at the Queen in Wilmington, Delaware
Blind Boys of Alabama and The Duskray Troubadours
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The six-time, Grammy-Award-winning gospel group, Blind Boys of Alabama, was first formed at Alabama's Talladega Insitute for the Blind in 1939. It was here that the original five memebers came together under the name "The Happyland," which was later changed to its current name in 1948. In their incredible 70-year career, the group has released over 60 albums, several awards and in 2007 were inducted into the gospel Music Hall of Fame. Maintaining their staple four-part harmonies, they have experimented with various styles within the gospel tradition. Their blend of traditional and contemporary gospel soul and R&B once confined them to smaller gospel venues, but after collaborating with artists such as Mavis Staples, Tom Petty, Prince, Peter Gabriel and Taj Mahal, the group has become a global sensation.
The Blind Boys' 2008 release, "Down In New Orleans" (2008), revealed a never-ending love for infusing new styles into their music. Recorded for the first time in New Orleans, they infused elements of dixieland jazz, soul and funk into their style, which is already a fusion of traditional American music through time. Their latest release, "Take the High Road", is a continuation of this expansion into other genres. This time, the Blind Boys are exploring the connection between traditional country and gospel. This 13-track collection has an all-star guest list including Vince Gill, Willie Nelson, Hank Williams Jr, Lee Ann Womack, and The Oak Ridge Boys. The album material is a moving mix of old and new, but all with the soulful feel that the Blind Boys infuse into their work.
Join us at World Cafe Live at the Queen in Wilmington, Delaware on THURSDAY, MAY 19, 12noon, for a celebration of country and gospel with The Blind Boys of Alabama, fresh off their latest release.
John Popper is probably best known for his role as a frontman of Blues Traveler, the rock outfit full of harmonic jams straight from Popper's vituosity. He's also got some serious guitar skills and vocals, which he's been honing since the 1980s. Though he first wanted to be a comedian, the young high school age Popper found that the harmonica was his thing and formed several garage bands before Blues Traveler evolved. The band, holding blues-rock, psychedelic rock, folk rock, soul, and Southern rock influences, broke into mainstream in the '90s, winning an Grammy and breaking chart records.
Popper began his solo career while in Blues Traveler, and his latest eponymous release, John Popper and the Duskray Troubadours features 12 original tracks. It's described by Popper himself as 'liberating, scrappy, roots-rock alter ego of Blues Traveler', and he's pretty much got it down. This album contains hardy, heartland rock as well as fresh, adult-alternative tracks; all in all, it makes for nostalgic yet exploratory listening. And as always, Popper's incredible harmonic moves are in no short supply. All six of the artists that make up John Popper and the Duskray Troubadours are 'rock solid', and their live performances are energizing.
Don't miss out on John Popper and the Duskray Troubadours on THURSDAY, MAY 19, as they headline along with the Blind Boys of Alabama at another Free at Noon concert. They're here to "channel the loose, limit-less spirit of simpler days" on stage, and it's not a performance to be missed - the 2011 WXPN Non-COMMvention at World Cafe Live at the Queen in Wilmington, Delaware.
Recent Release: John Popper and the Duskray Troubadours
Release Date: March 1, 2011
Label: 429 Records
Origin: Philadelphia, PA
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