Saturday, April 26, 2008

Blues Photo Show Preview

Here are a few samples of Lilian Critchlow's blues photos, which will be on display and for sale at the PPBHBIII:

For more info on Lilian, visit her web site:

Monday, April 21, 2008

Swiping Harmonicas Leads to a Better Life

I'm not one to promote stealing as a way to better one's life. However, in the case of one man, I think I need to make an exception.

Brecksville - John Feckanin never left home without his harmonica.
The Brecksville resident, who died Feb. 19 at age 88, played little ditties at taverns, nursing homes and flea markets. He often carried along lots of mouth organs to sell or give away.
"I think he thought everybody in the world should play the harmonica," said his wife, Ann. "He never read a note of music, but he was just very talented."
As a child growing up in the North Broadway area of the city, Feckanin became fascinated with his older brother's harmonica. At age 11, he swiped it and began teaching himself to play some tunes.

Read more about the impact of the harmonica on Feckanin's life.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Blues With A Feeling

Man, if Ronnie Shellist gets down like this in his living room, just think what he's like live in person.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Al(l) Ready to Blow

One of this year's performers: some Al Chesis for you. Things get really interesting around the 5:45 mark as Al goes for a stroll.

Saturday, April 5, 2008

Ronnie Shellist and a Bit of Dazzle

Here's a little taste of Ronnie Shellist, who will be at this year's Blowdown:

Friday, April 4, 2008

Can't Be All That Bad if Even Honest Abe Did Some Blow

Hamonica trivia: According to this article, even Abe Lincoln himself was occasioned to blow:
Why, even Honest Abe Lincoln wasn't above playing a tune or two on the harmonica when the occasion demanded, as Carl Sandburg related in Abraham Lincoln: The Prairie Years . . . part of his massive study of the 16th President.

According to the story, Lincoln had just finished a particularly hard day of vote chasing during his 1858 campaign against Stephen Douglas for an Illinois state senate seat. And there he was-off by his lonesome, scrunched down in somebody's battered old farm wagonplaying a quiet tune to revive his spirits . . . when someone happened by.

"Say! Mr. Lincoln!" the surprised citizen called out. "What are you doing here playing that mouth organ, when Stephen Douglas is out there in Peoria right this minute campaigning with a brass band?"

"Let Mr. Douglas have his brass band," said the Illinois rail-splitter. "This harmonica will do me just fine."

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Off the Wall

Or should I say, hang this one on your wall?