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MUSICIAN Born:

Otis Spann

The music of Otis Spann is immediate and urgent, completely clear in its content. Otis is one of the great and thoroughly authentic blues storytellers. Into his blues piano playing Otis put his soul. As part of the Muddy Waters' band he could frequently be found in Chicago's south side performing nightly with Muddy, who treated Spann as his protégé and referred to him as his half brother. And under Waters guidance, Otis Spann emerged as a top-notched musician, and took command of his own sessions as well. Otis Spann, originally from Jackson, Mississippi, was born March 21, 1930. He was of a younger generation than fellow pianists Sunnyland Slim, Roosevelt Sykes or Memphis Slim,but his early musical tutelage was very similar

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Muddy Waters 100: Muddy Waters 100

Read "Muddy Waters 100" reviewed by James Nadal

When a local guitarist and blues singer in Clarksdale, Mississippi named McKinley Morganfield made his first field recording at the Stovall plantation, on August 31, 1941, he had no idea where this music would take him. By the time he plugged his guitar into an amplifier on Chicago's Southside in 1943, he had become Muddy Waters, ...

Take Five With Mike Skory

Read "Take Five With Mike Skory" reviewed by Mike Skory

Meet Mike Skory:I play Hammond/piano for the regional soul/blues/original band, Root Doctor Featuring Freddie Cunningham. I also have a unique rock trio call Suzi & the Love Brothers. Both acts are out of Lansing, MI. Instrument(s):Piano, Hammond organ.Teachers and/or influences?The two musicians who helped me in ...

NEWS: PERFORMANCE / TOUR

Blues Harmonica Icon Curtis Salgado Brings 'Soul Shot' to Sellersville, PA

Award-winning vocalist/songwriter/harmonica icon Curtis Salgado will celebrate the release of his blistering Alligator Records debut CD, Soul Shot, with a live performance at the Sellersville Theater in Sellersville on Wednesday, August 29, 2012. Winner of the 2012 Blues Music Award for Soul Blues Artist Of The Year, Salgado effortlessly mixes R&B, funk and blues with a ...

Take Five With Tim Richards

Read "Take Five With Tim Richards" reviewed by Tim Richards

Meet Tim Richards: Tim's first encounter with a piano was at the age of eight, in a dentist's waiting room. After classical piano lessons he taught himself jazz and blues from the age of 14, after seeing Thelonious Monk on TV.Since forming the long-lived modern jazz quartet Spirit Level in Bristol in ...

ARTICLE: RECORD LABEL PROFILE

Storyville Records: A Treasure Trove of Swinging Jazz

Read "Storyville Records: A Treasure Trove of Swinging Jazz" reviewed by Chris May

Since its foundation during the European revivalist movement of the early 1950s, Copenhagen-based Storyville Records has grown into a major repository of New Orleans, big band and mainstream recordings. With something approaching 600 releases in its back catalogue, the label is a treasure trove of jazz that swings. Founded in 1952 by Danish jazz ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Otis Spann: Best of the Vanguard Years

Read "Best of the Vanguard Years" reviewed by Ed Kopp

Nowhere are Otis Spann’s piano skills better showcased than on this CD’s first five tracks, lifted from the classic 1969 album Chicago/The Blues/Today! Volume 1. These cuts feature Spann in a spare format with drummer S.P. Leary as his only backing, and they contain some of the most accomplished blues piano ever recorded. The rest of ...


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