2010 Western Maryland Blues Fest
2010 Western Maryland Blues Fest
Hagerstown, MD (May 25, 2010): The Western Maryland Blues Fest serves up an annual community celebration centered on one of America's most enduring musical forms. Set amidst raw-boned guitar riffs and emotionally charged vocals, Blues Fest represents a partnership between City government, event volunteers and local business sponsors as they team together in a unique 4-day event.
Over the extended weekend of June 3 through June 6, 2010, the 15th annual edition of Downtown Hagerstown's community house party will feature an impressive lineup of national, regional and local blues and jazz musicians. To begin Blues Fest festivities in 2010, on Thursday, June 3, Blues Fest will again present its free "Blues Prelude Concert," featuring regional guitar phenom The Mike Westcott Band from 5pm to 7pm, in University Plaza -- a beautiful, downtown, green space located beside the Hagerstown Campus of the University Systems of Maryland. Blues Prelude attendees are encouraged to bring their own lawn chairs and/or blankets. An art exhibition by Blues Fest 2010 poster artist, Nathanael Roney, will also occur on Thursday from 6pm to 9pm in the Washington County Arts Council's Gallery at 14 W. Washington Street-located within a very short walk from the Blues Prelude site.
On Friday, June 4, beginning at 4:30pm, Blues Fest kicks off its first extended day of multi-artist entertainment with its popular "Lotta Blues Show" on the main stage in the City's Central Parking Lot. After an opening set by Hagerstown's own Moondog Medicine Show, Friday's lineup will continue with the blues party sounds of Baltimore's "Big Daddy" Stallings & The Bluez Evolution, followed in turn by the dynamic showmanship of Bo Diddley protege Hamilton Loomis. The "Lotta Blues Show" concludes with sizzling fretwork from the internationally-acclaimed blues guitarist, Bernard Allison.
From noon to 9:30pm on Saturday, June 5, Blues Fest shifts into high gear with the event's signature "Downtown House Party," where alternating stages showcase back-to-back sets by eight local, regional and national acts, including retro-/rockabilly sounds from The Tonehounds, Ray Charles inspired R&B jazz from The Eric Byrd Trio with the Brother Ray Band, as well as a Louisiana contingent of performers, including singer/songwriter Eric Lindell, the supafunkrock of the horn-led Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue, and 2009 Song of the Year winner Kenny Neal from the Louisiana Bayou. Also appearing is exciting blues newcomer and U.K. native Joanne Shaw Taylor. Blues Fest's "Downtown House Party" fun culminates with the scorching Albert-King style guitar and vocals from Michael Burks, followed by the newly-crowned 2010 Blues Music Awards Band of The Year winner THE TOMMY CASTRO BAND of San Francisco!! Food, beverages, souvenirs and comfort facilities are available within the festival site so fans won't need to miss a note.
On Sunday, June 6, Blues Fest again "gives back" to the community with its free "Family Blues Picnic" from noon to 5pm in Hagerstown City Park. Preceded by area favorite The Hard Swimmin' Fish, and the harmonica-led stylings of Flat-Foot Sam & The Educated Fools, Sunday fans will be thrilled by the solo piano stylings of Arkansas native Eden Brent (2010 Pinetop Perkins Piano Player of the Year). Blues Fest 2010 then closes out with a special acoustic pairing of harmonica player Phil Wiggins and roots/blues guitarist Corey Harris. As always, Blues Fest 2010 will feature musical workshops, as well as numerous children's activities in the festival's "Kid's Jam Too" areas on Saturday and Sunday. Please visit the event Web site: www.blues-fest.org for more details about one of Washington County's best events.
Tickets can be purchased online or by calling the Hagerstown-Washington County Convention and Visitors Bureau's Visitors Center at 301-791-3246. As an added value, Western Maryland Blues Fest ticket prices will remain the same great value price they were in 2009! Tickets for the "Lotta Blues Show" on Friday, June 4 are $20 in advance (plus a $2.50 transaction fee) and $25 at the gate. Kids 6 to 12 years of age are $7. Tickets for the "Downtown House Party" on Saturday, June 5 are $35 in advance (plus a $2.50 transaction fee) and $40 at the gate. Kids 6 to 12 years of age are $7. Special combination tickets for Friday and Saturday are available in advance for $50 (plus a $2.50 transaction fee). As always, Thursday's "Blues Prelude Concert" in University Plaza and Sunday's "Family Blues Picnic" in City Park are free! Visit www.blues-fest.org for more details including stage times, biographies of the entertainers, directions and much more!