The Bay City Blues is our weekly showcase of world class Blues music and superb instrumental talent. This event is a celebration of the Blues in all its forms and an adventure into the depth of a national genre. Hosted by the nationally recognized Chris Cain & his All-Star cast of Musicians, every week they invite a new special guest to accompany them on stage and present new, upcoming, & old talent from the blues world! Bay City Blues is our tribute and exploration into the Blues genre, it is a special event in which we all get to help, share, & “Preserve the Blues."
Special Guest: Simon Russell
The Bay Area is a place well known for its great soul music as well as being the home of countless musical legends. Through the years Simon has developed a musical style that embraces the soulful traditions of the Bay Area with his Jazz/Blues/Gospel/Funk inspired vocals and piano Style. In 1983 Simon moved to the Bay spending most of his time in Oakland Ca., where he learned the great art of performance and musicality from a number of local musicians who were gracious enough to bring him under thier wings.
One of the most influencial musical figures in Simon's career was the multi-instrumentalist Rafael Grinage (bass player for Earl Fatha Hines and Odetta). He taught Simon that "no note should be wasted"! Make every note count or be silent! Those words have stayed with Simon all of his career.
As a musician Simon has had the great honor of performing with The James Brown Band, El Debarge, Elvin Bishop, Pete Escovedo, The Angels, Anika Noni Rose,Tom Politzer, Micheal Blankenship, Kevin Levar, Professor Sylvester Henderson, Sylvester Burkes, Kim Waters, John Nemeth, Mads Tolling, Tony Lindsay, Tommy Castro, David Grissom, Lady Bianca, Mitch Woods, EC Scott, Zakiya Hooker, Curtis Lawson, Beverly Stoval and many that are truely remarkable musical phenoms yet to be discovered on a grand scale commercially. In 2007 Simon Russell performed with the Soul Generals in Toronto, Ontario, Canada opening for the Morris Day and The Time.
In 2012 Simon joined Kim Waters to perform for and honor Quincy Jones on Black History Month.
About Chris Cain:
Chris Cain's jazz-tinged, blues soaked guitar and deep, warm vocals have the maturity and authenticity of bluesmen many years his senior. His expressive style is the result of a lifetime of study and the relentless pursuit of music mastery. His passion and intensity are a blend of his mother's Greek ancestry and his father's soulful black heritage.
Cain was raised on stories of his father’s childhood upbringing on Memphis’ Historic Beale Street and attended his first B.B King concert at the tender age of three. Blues music played continuously on the home stereo and family outings were often trips to concerts. Cain recalls, “I remember when I was a kid, my Dad would be mowing the lawn with the stereo blasting Muddy Waters. When I look back, that was pretty cool! There was always music playing at our house, Ray Charles, B.B. King, Freddie King, Albert King, all the greats.”
Larry Nager (syndicated Scripts-Howard music critic) writes, “Nowadays most young blues players are Strat-wielding Stevie Ray Vaughan-a-bes. Not Chris Cain. With a voice that recalls B.B. King and a thick toned Gibson guitar sound reminiscent of Albert King, Cain is forging a unique style. With his own highly personalized songwriting, “Hall Of Shame” is a giant step in the development of one of the most compelling young bluesmen on today’s scene.”
Through his guitar mastery and remarkable songwriting ability, Chris Cain has established himself as a musical force to be reckoned with. And as San Jose Mercury News music reviewer John Orr writes, “more than anyone else, anywhere, Chris Cain represents the future of the blues.”