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RTM Fundraiser Sept. 24 2017 Javier Matos Harrison Street Craig Clark Band Slim Willie and the Ride Ken Valdez Minnesota Music Cafe

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Ken Valdez Tops
2017 Road To Memphis Band Challenge
Wilebski's Blues Saloon, Sunday, April 23:

Not surprisingly, again this year, the bands that came out to compete in the Road To Memphis Challenge all performed at a very high level. In order of appearance the bands were: Squishy Mud - Jim Stairs, Ken Valdez, Slim Willie and The Ride, Harrison Street, Paul Barry & the Ace Tones and Bluedog. If you are not familiar with these bands, check their web sites and the MnBS Gig Calendar to find out where they are playing.

Ken Valdez
             Ken Valdez
The difficult task of choosing this year's winner fell to the panel of judges: Diane Nemitz, Spike Stephan, Gary Eckhart, Nick Zwack, Joyann Parker and Mark LaMoine. When scorekeeper Barry Tannenbaum presented the final tally, it was Ken Valdez whose set impressed the most. First runner-up was Harrison Street.

Once again, kudos to the RTM Committee: Steve Leutgeb, Kathy Krauter and Chris Brauer for their time and energy spent bringing this impressive event to fruition. Also thanks to timekeeper Tim Flanagan, volunteers Linda Tannenbaum, Joan Hanson, Deb Hills, Marilee Blake and anyone else I might have missed. Special thanks to Nipper Barrett for working the sound board, Kent Kapitan for his emcee duties and to Duke and the staff at Wilebski's for providing the venue.

Next up in the RTM process will be the Youth Showcase Challenge scheduled for Sunday, August 6 at The Lodge.
Jake Jacobson


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2017 Road To Memphis Solo/Duo Honors
Go To Javier Matos
Javier and Levi Matos
Javier and Levi Matos
The 2017 MnBS Road To Memphis Solo/Duo Challenge was held on Sunday, April 9 at the Dugout Bar in Mahtomedi in front of a roomful of fortunate and discerning blues fans. As usual, the audience was treated to exceptional performances by all of the participating musicians.

In order of appearance, the competing acts were: Javier Matos, Brother Jon Duo, Louisville "White Lightning" Curtis Duo and Trevor Marty. In the end, Javier prevailed, perhaps with a little help from his son Levi. Trevor Marty was first runner-up.

Thanks to judges Grace Enebo, Ken Tritz, Sheri Cameron, Charlie Lawson and Mike Fugazzi; time-keeper, Tim Flanagan; score-keeper, Barry Tannenbaum; emcee, Mark Halverson; volunteers Kay Rooney, Brigid Martin and Linda Tannenbaum. Special thanks to Steve Leutgeb, Kathy Krauter and Chris Brauer on the RTM Committee for pulling this event together. Also thanks to our hosts at the Dugout and the sound guy. — Jake Jacobson


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Road To Memphis 2017 Poster Trevor Marty Javier Matos Brother Jon Duo Louisville "White Lightning" Curtis Duo Slim Willie & the Ride Bluedog Ken Valdez Harrison Street Jim Stairs - Squishy Mud Paul Barry & the Ace Tones Wilebski's Blues Saloon Wilebski's Blues Saloon The Dugout Bar The Dugout Bar International Blues Challenge Minnesota Blues Society
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2017 MnBS Road To Memphis Challenges
Solo/Duo Challenge
Sunday, April 9, 1 pm
The Dugout Bar
Band Challenge
Sunday, April 23, 1 pm
Wilebski's Blues Saloon


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page last updated: Monday, August 21, 2017

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