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Lancaster University News

The following article recently appeared in the Lancaster University Newspaper:

Got the old Lancaster Blues?
by Anna Tuck

Feeling down and out? Got those familiar old blues? Has your baby gone left you? If so, (or if you just like heartfelt music,) get yourself down to the Dukes Playhouse on a Sunday evening for “Juke-Joint Blues”. Running every Sunday evening from 8.15-10.30 p.m. “Juke-Joint” is a relaxed, informal blues jam, showcasing a variety of talented (blues) musicians in Lancaster.

The session takes place in the bar area of the Dukes, entry into the event is free, and the warm ambience calls for sitting, relaxing and chatting over drinks. For the more adventurous, however, there is the opportunity to take to the floor with your instruments / voice, and show the world what you can do. All musicians are welcome and are warmly received.

So what kind of music can be expected? “Juke-Joint” specialises in the early blues of the 1930s, with songs such as “Sittin’ On Top Of the World”, by Mississippi Sheiks, and “Nobody Knows You When You’re Down and Out” by the legendary Bessie Smith. Although Juke Joint has an agenda to take the blues “back to its roots”, there is no hard and fast rules about this as songs from a more recent era (for example, The Rolling Stones’ “You Gotta Move”) share the spotlight with songs which don’t necessarily conform strictly to the term “blues”.

The totally acoustic jam is introduced by “Mississippi” Max Haymes, who has been a key figure in the Lancaster blues scene for the past forty years. Juke-Joint aims to “promote blues as a way of life” says Max who ran “Max’s Blues Club” at the John O’Gaunt prior to this, his latest project.

Feeling blue? Join Max, Rex on guitar / kazoo, Adrian on bass, Victoria on sax, plus a range of guest musicians for fun, laughter, hootin’ and a whoopin’, and most important of all, for those “low down dirty blues”.

Thanks for the publicity Anna

Copyright © 2000 Anna Tuck. All rights reserved.