L – R: John Hall, Lightnin’ Malcolm, Samantha Fish, Paul Duffley, Adam Signore & David Riley
It was an immense honor and pleasure to be part of the Summit team and help bring this awesome event to life. I cannot thank the people who brought me on board enough.
The New England Blues Summit was the brainchild of John Hall, owner of Rhythm Room Entertainment, a seasoned and well-known festival promoter from Massachusetts and Paul Duffley of ESP Sound Systems, ubiquitous with great sounding live performances all over the state. Also on The Summit Team were David Riley, Project Management, Advertising & Promotions and Stage Manager. Joe Marino who was our videographer for the event. Ellie Johnson, Sales Coordination, Customer Service, Ticket Collections & Merchandise. P.S. she’s the brains behind the operation 🙂 and myself doing Photography, Web Design, Graphic Design, some Video and Social Media for the Summit. Also helping operations during the event were Chris Candito, Ed Medeiros, and PJ Duffley, who were invaluable in making the event run like the well oiled machine it was.
The first year has been a huge success and planning for #NEBS2017 is underway. Can’t wait to update everyone on next years line up & specials that we will be offering.
What they envisioned for the event is a great three day blues festival, but also a whole lot more. It truly is a Summit. They created spaces for the representative blues organizations to represent themselves and showcase their regional award winning blues bands. They provided space for the up and coming youth bands to perform as well. They wanted their guests to have the opportunity to have top notch accommodations that included food and lodging in the same establishment as the performances. In comes the Cape Cod Resort and Conference Center. All topped off with great national acts each night of the event.
Main Stage Performers:
This year’s event featured national acts Samantha Fish & Joe Louis Walker, with Sugar Ray & The Bluetones and the John Nemeth Band opening.
Samantha Fish is a virtual superstar from Kansas City who’s been rocking the guitar since 15 years old and has wowed audiences across the country with her powerhouse band, featuring Christopher Alexander on Bass and Go Go Ray on drums. We were honored to have Carter Allen from WZLX MC Samantha’s appearance on Friday night.
Take a listen to some Samantha Fish at The Summit:
Joe Louis Walker has been on the scene developing his smoking brand of Electric Blues since 1965 (age 16). Both opening bands are local favorites from the national stage.
The John Nemeth Band is well known in the area and this year features a local favorite Danny Banks on drums. Danny is something of a local prodigy, sitting in at his first live gig at 6 years old. In 2005 he even performed on the David Letterman show. It’s always a pleasure to see Danny when he swings back to the Northeast.
Sugar Ray & The Bluetones:
Sugar Ray & the Bluetones are New England area legends on the Blues scene. They have been performing for over 40 years nationally and currently Sugar Ray Norcia has local favorite Monster Mike Welch in the band.
This Summit… festival… Party, is three solid days of music with informational sessions, blues societies displays, crafts vendors all with virtually nonstop music opportunities lasting into the wee hours of the night. My wife and I arrived on site at 2:pm on Friday and were seeing music virtually nonstop until 4:pm on Sunday afternoon. We were offsite for a total of 2 hours during the whole three day event. With the resorts Shops, Spa, Swimming Pools & Restaurants (we only made it to the restaurant BTW) there really isn’t a reason to even leave, although Cape Cod has a lot to offer and if you can steal away for a bit you’ll find some great stuff.
Blues in the Lounge:
The Love Dogs:
The lounge was a special space during the Summit. The Love Dogs kicked off the event with an awesome show in the lounge. It was my first time seeing this band and I have to tell you. I am sold. Big fan. The summits only two weeks old and I have already seen them elsewhere.
The lounge also served as the space for our youth Showcase. It is the perfect intimate space where you really feel the vibe. Great stuff. Closing out the Summit, Mrs. Toni Lynn Washington, Boston Blues Scene royalty, Sang us to heaven. Pete Henderson was smokin’ on guitar. Bruce Bears on keys was amazing. Byron Cage killed it on drums and last but not least, Lenny Bradford, owner of the infectious smile and Bass aficionado wowed us all.
Mrs. Toni Lynn Washington:
Keeping The Blues Alive Summit Panel Discussion:
Holly Harris from WUMB Boston set up an incredibly useful panel of festival promoters and venue owners who spent quite some time discussing many aspects of keeping the blues alive but also covered other useful things such as how best for bands to contact venues and festivals.
Holly assembled some great people from the region’s best venues and biggest festivals. Here’s the lineup:
- Mike and Brad Benton (Whtie Mt. Boogie & Blues Festival)
- Paul Benjamin, North Atlantic & Gloucester Blues Fests, Time Out Pub
- Holly Harris, moderator, DJ/Mc Co-Founder of the Boston Blues Society
- Charlie Abel, Thunder Road and formerly of Harper’s Ferry
- Kathy Spencer, Narrows Center for the Arts
- George Tocci, The Bull Run
- John MacKinnon, Blues & Brews Festival
- Eddie Page, The Next Page
Some Very Special Guests:
A mention for Dud & Susie:
L – R: Adam Signore, PJ, John Hall, Ellie, Susie, Dud & Paul Duffley
We would like to send a heartfelt thank you to Dud and Susie who rearranged their wedding date to coincide with the summit. They have been outspoken supporters of the highest magnitude and we cannot thank them enough. We wish them the very best together.
John Hall with Candye Kane:
This year’s summit is dedicated to some great people the music community lost this year. Otis Clay, Smokin’ Joe Kubek, his wife Phyllis and Candye Kane, we do this for you.
The Regional Blues Societies:
The Boston Blues Society:
The Boston Blues Society which set up a meeting room with information and BBS Products. Representing Boston/MA in the Regional Band Showcase was Steve Morgan & The Kingfish who put on an incredible show.
The Granite State Blues Society:
The Granite State Blues Society who also set up an info display and quite the guitar collection. An extremely awesome display and we thank them for bringing it down for the summit’s guests to see. Downtown Dave & The Deep Pockets, their 2015 Blues Challenge winner, represented them and put on an absolutely killer show.
Also present this year:
Representing the Maine Blues Society at the Summit was the Juke Rockets Blues Band.
Representing the Connecticut Blues Society was the Mighty Soul Drivers.
Fabulous performances by all the regional blues challenge winners, we thank them and their respective blues societies for their participation this year.
We were pleased to be able to present a youth showcase featuring some great up and coming talent. All of these performers and bands absolutely stunned with their performances. We were so happy to give them space to perform at the Summit. Keep your eye’s & Ears out for these folks:
Ben Knight (Boston)
Veronica Lewis (Haverhill, Ma)
Will Bart (Long Island)
Nolan Leite (RI)
Some important links:
Some more photos from the summit:
Downtown Dave & The Deep Pockets
Danny Banks, Drummer, The John Nemeth Band
Mrs. Toni Lynn Washington & Lenny Bradford
Reprinted with permission – the original article can be see at http://rovingrecordings.tumblr.com/post/145187995598/the-new-england-blues-summit