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B.B. King news

Farewell B.B. King!

May 14, 2015, the day we mourn for the death of the “King of the Blues”. Riley B. King, or most popularly known as B.B. King, died peacefully at age 89 in his sleep in Las Vegas according to his attorney.

The singer/guitarist, who brought the blues to mainstream, was diagnosed with diabetes 30 years ago and was hospitalized last April due to dehydration. On May 1, he posted a message at his site, thanking the fans for their well wishes and prayers for his recovery. He was feeling better then and back at his residence in Las Vegas for home hospice care until this sad news spread.

B.B. has made a legacy, never slowed down and continued to go on tour even after cementing his name as an icon. His career spanned for more than six decades, has done collaborations from different artists, incorporating his style of music to their genre. He became so big that even non-blues fans recognize him. Name them a blues artist and they will say B.B. King! As what Eric Clapton told in his 2008 biography, he is the most important artist the blues has ever produced.

Here’s a heart-warming message from Clapton that he posted on his Facebook page via The Telegraph.

As a guitarist myself, B.B. is one of my major influences. When I was learning to play, I was first introduced into those fast, shredding licks so I was into that thing for a while but after I discovered the blues after just a couple of weeks of playing, there’s no turning back. It was like love at first sight. I knew I found my voice and his style has caught my fancy. He’s got a sweet vibrato sound, has a very distinct tone that once you hear the notes played, even if you don’t see, you know it’s him playing. Also I learned from him that less is more. He can kill all these shredder/virtuosos with just one note! I may not be in a blues band, but that style has embedded in my heart and soul. Definitely, B.B. is one of those guitar players I’ll thank.

He will sorely be missed, and as what the local DJ here said during closing of his then blues radio program, May the Blues be with you!

The thrill may be gone but his music lives on.

Let the good times roll!!!

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Jam Track Central Guitar Solo Contest 2015

Jam Track Central Guitar Solo Contest 2015

Jam Track Central has launched its Guitar Solo Contest for 2015 which is open world wide. It’s also open to all styles of guitar players out there, be it shred, jazz, blues, rock, etc. Interested guitarist can select on the listed category on what they want to enter. Only one entry per contestant and it will be judged by twelve of the finest guitar players around the globe.

Upon seeing a “Blues” category, I thought of sending an entry, try to test the water since this is my very first time to join and for the thrill as well since there are so many great guitar players of different styles and approaches who have applied.

Here’s my entry to the Blues Category. Hope I did justice to the backing track. You can also vote for it by clicking RATE (with approved hand sign). 🙂

https://jamtrackcentral.com/jtcguitarsolocontest2015/entry/1352

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Roadhouse Manila Bay

Hanging Out @ Roadhouse

If you’re looking for a hang out spot to chill, watch awesome blues and blues/rock musicians and happens to be around the metro, one place to visit is The Roadhouse at Manila Bay.

Located at SM by the Bay, Mall Of Asia, Pasay City, Philippines, it is the home of blues, bikes, rock and booze combined here in Manila. The place is cozy, serves great food, nice service and good music to offer.

Roadhouse Manila Bay

Roadhouse Manila Bay

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I got a chance to visit the place to watch a friend’s gig and I can say that it’s very nice and clean. The venue has this biker’s theme, posters and guitars on the wall for its design and good crew.

Also noticed that the people who watch the performing artists were also great and very appreciative, they “listen” to the performers, something that I didn’t see on some venues.

I definitely had a great time hanging out. A bonus for me was that I got the privilege to jam with the band and another jammer who is a lap steel guitar player at the second set. Haven’t played with someone who plays a lap steel, so it was a thrill slidin’ with the master. I played with them onstage for 3 songs, two covers and an original composition by the band “Anything”, which I also played on the recorded acoustic version. It was one of those rare times I get to play blues music and on a Les Paul guitar as well. 🙂

Here’s a recorded video of a jam with Blue Way Trio with Haro Echter on lap steel guitar, the full band electric verion of “Anything”.

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music

Music Collaboration: Anything and Eleksyon na Naman

With no gigs with bands due to busy schedule from work, had squeezed in some time to do collaboration work with Ace Agamata, lawyer by day, musician by night. Drawing blues as an influence to his compositions, arrangement of these tunes were recorded at Skunk Studios in an acoustic live setup, impromptu with a freeway jam of feel, with little overdubs for the harmonica part and some solos.

We finished two of his original songs, ‘Anything’ which was inspired by a Stevie Ray Vaughan song, and the election themed 12 bar blues jam ‘Eleksyon na Naman’ (in English, ‘Election Time Once Again’) which was about what people should do on the recently concluded 2013 elections here.

Anything

Words and music by Ace Agamata. Vocals and rhythm guitar: Ace Agamata; Slide guitar and harp: Marvin Bea.

Eleksyon na Naman

Words and music by Ace Agamata. Vocals, rhythm and lead guitars: Ace Agamata; Slide guitar and harp: Marvin Bea

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Etta James

R.I.P. Etta James

2012 has just began and here we got a sad news already in the music world. One of the greatest voices in the industry, Etta James died just last January 20, 2012 leaving the blues scene and the whole music biz in grief.

 

Click here for related news.

 

Paying a tribute to the late singer, here’s a vid of her live performance of “At Last”.