This weekly radio show is about the beauty and, at times, simplicity of blues that feels like musicians enjoying and expressing themselves on a back porch somewhere. A lot of blues in the last 20 years or so has emphasized the amazing talents and technical mastery of certain musicians, but has sacrificed a bit of the originality and feeling at the core of the genre. This show shies away from anything that feels ‘stale’ or overly electric or produced, and instead emphasizes early-generation blues, and even more, the modern musicians and creative lyricists who have been inspired to carry on that tradition, such as Cephas and Wiggins, Corey Harris, Lucinda Williams, Alvin Youngblood Hart, Guy Davis, Eric Bibb, Hans Theessink, Carey and Lurrie Bell, Taj Mahal, Maria Muldaur, and many, many others. Call it rootsy, country, acoustic, folky, or traditional style blues, the artists and songs played on this show understand that less is more and that blues should be about emotion and sincerity and rawness, about feeling, not technique, and about expression not replication nor virtuosity in musicianship. This show emphasizes those creative artists that are writing new songs in the roots blues tradition, reviving feeling-oriented sounds, and the artists that inspired them.
While roots blues has undergone a somewhat small but notable recent revival, this (mainly) acoustic, back porch style still gets fairly scant play on the radio. I hope that listeners might discover a type of blues that they find evocative and less predictable than what they may have formerly thought of when they heard the word ‘blues’. In addition, each week I feature two very different versions or interpretations of a blues standard in a segment called “Two for the Blues”, as well as providing air time for local artists and events and international blues musicians.
The show airs Sunday mornings, from 5-7 AM (Mountain time) on KRCL, 90.9 FM in Salt Lake City, Utah. Online streaming available at: www.krcl.org/.