Nick Moss's Rolling Chicago Blues Revival with the Nick Moss Band and guests Guy King , Corey Dennison & Gerry Hundt

Fri, Sep 22 2017, 9:00pm - $15 - Tickets
Doors open at 7 pm.
 
A star high school athlete sidelined by a serious kidney ailment, Nick Moss picked up the electric bass at the urging of his brother Joe, a budding blues guitarist, simply to pass the time. When he rose from his sickbed to sneak out and hear Little Charlie and the Nightcats, his course was set: The allure of performing was irresistible, and Nick resolved that night to become a musician. Although Moss tells it matter-of-factly, a deep appreciation notwithstanding, it is difficult not to read mythical, even mystical overtones into his story, particularly if you are among those who love music and understand its power to elevate, transform, and even save lives.
 
Moss is one of us, and he has repaid the debt many times over. Fresh out of school, he learned to love the gritty Chicago blues of the 1970s while playing with real deal bluesmen, first as one of Buddy Scott’s Rib Tips, then with Jimmy “Fast Fingers” Dawkins. He mastered the subtleties of golden-age postwar electric blues with the Legendary Blues Band of Willie “Big Eyes” Smith, where he exchanged his bass for the guitar, and later spent three years as guitarist with the great Jimmy Rogers. These apprenticeships served him well when he started his own band, Nick Moss and the Flip Tops, and began writing and recording an acclaimed series of hard-hitting albums for his own Blue Bella label, beginning with 1999’s First Offense and 2001’s Blues Music Award-nominated Got A New Plan. 

By the time of 2003’s Count Your Blessings, Moss’s work was attracting the attention in a big way. That recording featured not only the talents of such Chicago-based artists as Willie Smith, Barrelhouse Chuck, and Bob Stroger, but the contributions of national figures like Anson Funderburgh and Sam Myers, Lynwood Slim, and Curtis Salgado. Both Blessings and its successor, Sadie Mae (2005), received BMA consideration and strong reviews. Two exciting live albums (Live at Chan’s and Live at Chan’s: Combo Platter No. 2, the latter featuring Lurrie Bell) followed, bracketing 2007’s remarkable Play It ‘Til Tomorrow, recorded with guests Barrelhouse Chuck and Eddie Taylor Jr. An ambitious double album (one arranged in typical electric style, the other an acoustic session), Play It produced yet another BMA nomination for Album, along with nods for Guitarist and Band, and placed in Blues Revue magazine’s 2010 critics’ poll of the “Decade’s Best Blues: 25 Great Albums That Defined The Past 10 Years.”

Mythical stories often involve as a central element a quest, and Moss’s true-life experience follows suit. Along the way, he played on records by Smith, Big Bill Morganfield, and Monster Mike Welch; produced and/or released albums for other Blue Bella artists including Cash Box Kings, Kilborn Alley Blues Band, Bill Lupkin, Gerry Hundt, and Matthew Stubbs; and produced the all-star Midnight Blues project on Magic Slim & The Teardrops for Blind Pig Records in 2008 — all in addition to the growth in his vision achieved over the arc of seven genuinely authentic blues albums, recognized by a total of 16 BMA nominations. It seemed reasonable for a restless artist, with nothing left to prove to purists, to wonder what other styles he could explore. 

If Moss had a new plan in 2001, he began in earnest to carry it out in performances leading up to his 2010 release, Privileged. He may have come early to the blues, but his formative years were scored largely by Led Zeppelin, Free, Jimi Hendrix, ZZ Top, and other blues-influenced rockers, and Moss found that by introducing elements of their music, he could remain true to his roots, even as he expanded his creative options. Making use of a broader sonic palette, trying his hand at timely and topical songwriting, and introducing new rhythms resulted in music of a higher intensity, and an increasingly rewarding relationship with audiences. Victoria Amps’ Mark Baier, writing for the online Blues Guide Chicagobluesguide.com, proclaimed Moss “a modern cross generational musician.” On 2011’s Here I Am, Moss continued to move forward, adding R&B-based textures, and sometimes an Allman Brothers-esque jam band aesthetic, to his trick bag. In 2014, the more progressive Time Ain’t Free “reached deeper into soul, funk, and rock ‘n’ roll,” according to Billboard.com, “with shades of P-Funk, Little Feat, Faces, and world music, all filtered through Moss’s deep blue lens, sparking exciting new directions.” 

Nick is a gifted storyteller, a songwriter that takes his craft seriously and a musician with a daunting work ethic. He is a walking encyclopedia of blues and music knowledge, and his deep understanding of the genre shines on the new release From the Root to the Fruit (Blue Bella Records, 2016).

GUY KING: 2017 Blues Music Award Nominee Guy King’s music is fresh and unique while maintaining a strong link to the musical masters that came before him. His natural musical abilities and his one of a kind blend of Blues, Jazz, Soul, and R&B, are some of what makes Guy King so special in the music world. Named as Chicago’s Latest Royalty by Vintage Guitar Magazine, he continues to perform, write and record new material with an ear sensibly tilted toward producing great music: taking the varied music he loves and recasting it in new directions.

 
COREY DENNISON: 
Born in Chattanooga, Tennessee, Corey Dennison spent a majority of his childhood moving about Tennessee and Georgia. As a young boy, Corey heard the powerful, soulful sounds of the Blues on late night radio programs and recalls being captivated by the music. He received his first guitar at the age of 6 and began to imitate the music of artists such as Gatemouth Brown, Albert Collins and Albert King. Corey immediately felt a strong connection to Soul music. “I just loved the way Soul music made me feel from my head to my toes. I remember humming along to songs from Wilson Pickett, Curtis Mayfield & Sam Cooke.” This marked a lasting impression on his musical style and is clearly visible today in his soulful vocals and fiery guitar solos.  Corey found his musical calling while hanging out with his harp playing uncle. “My Uncle snuck me into clubs where I saw some of the greatest Blues cats of all-time, Albert King, Albert Collins and Junior Wells. This is where it became clear to me; I wanted to be a Blues Man." He spent 12 years honing his skills as a sideman for Carl Weathersby, a mentor beyond the music: " Pop has really showed me the real me and have helped me in a lot of ways. Showed me what to do, what not to do. I wouldn't know anything if it was not for Carl and my brothers-in-arms." Playing with Weathersby blessed Corey with opportunities to share the stage with such musical greats as The Kinsey Report, Robert Blaine, Chico Banks, The Steepwater Band, Jimmy Johnson, Robert Randolph, Derek Trucks And John Mayer, Gerry Hundt, Nick Moss, Lurrie Bell, Carlos Johnson and the Buddah of Bass, Mr. Bill Dickens, and Buddy Guy.
 

GERRY HUNDT: Gerry Hundt was playing Chicago Blues in taverns before he was allowed to drink in them. Born in Wisconsin and raised in Rockford, Illinois, Gerry has since lived in Vermont, New York City, Colorado, and Chicago.  In Denver, he worked, toured, and recorded with the likes of John-Alex Mason, Ronnie Shellist, The ClamDaddys, and Easy Bill.  From 2004 through 2009, Gerry toured the USA and EU relentlessly as a member of Chicago's Nick Moss & The Flip-Tops, filling the role of "utility man," playing bass, guitar, harmonica, and, of course, mandolin. On the strength of his critically acclaimed Blue Bella Records CD, "Since Way Back," Gerry was nominated for Blues Music Awards in 2008, 2009, 2010, & 2011 for Best Instrumentalist, Other (Mandolin), and featured at the Montreal Jazz Festival and The Blues Station in Tournon d'Agenais, France. In addition to continuing worldwide radio and web airplay, tracks from "Since Way Back" have appeared numerous times on NPR's "Morning Edition."  As a solo performer, Gerry's fresh take on Chicago Blues has led to appearances at the Kalamazoo Blues Festival, Port Townsend Blues Festival, and Buddy Guy's Legends; it has also made him a favorite among blues-dance aficionados at national events like bluesShout! and the Mile High Blues Fest. From 2007-2010, Gerry Hundt's Legendary One-Man-Band appeared weekly for Tuesday Bluesday at Holt's Coach Lite Inn (Chesterton, IN) - a gig which regularly saw touring blues musicians mingling with locals.  His favorite seasonal gig is the Saturday open-air market in Chesterton, where Gerry appears monthly, bringing the sounds of Chicago's old Maxwell Street to Indiana.  In 2015, he captured that with the release of "Gerry Hundt's Legendary One-Man-Band," available here.  In band settings, Gerry has appeared with the finest Midwestern traditional blues acts, namely The Cash Box Kings, Barrelhouse Chuck, Billy Flynn, Little Frank, Joel Paterson & Rick Sherry, Bill Lupkin, Matt Hendricks, Jim Liban, Perry Weber, and Westside Andy.  He also endorses Supro amplifiers.

 
 

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