Eric Gales

This is a 18 and over event.Standing Room Only Eric Gales is a blues firebrand. Over 30 years and 18 albums, his passion for the music and his boundless desire to keep it vital has never waned, even when his own light dimmed due to his substance struggles. Throughout it all, he continued to reinvigorate the art form with personal revelation in his lyrics and bold stylistic twists in his guitar playing and songwriting. Five years sober, creatively rejuvenated, and sagely insightful, Eric is ready for the fight of his career. Aptly, he calls his masterful new album, out January 2022 on Provogue/Mascot label Group, Crown. Here, Eric opens like never before, sharing his struggles with substance abuse, his hopes about a new era of sobriety and unbridled creativity, and his personal reflections on racism. The songs are delivered with clarity and feature Eric’s personal experiences and hope for positive change. In addition, the 16-track collection boasts his finest singing, songwriting, and his signature guitar playing that burns throughout. Produced by Joe Bonamassa and Josh Smith, this is Eric at his most boldly vulnerable, uncompromisingly political, and unflinchingly confident. Crown was forged in tragedy but rises triumphantly. The day before Eric left Greensboro, North Carolina to Los Angeles, California to work with Joe and Josh, he heard the news about the George Floyd murder. As a Black man in America, he had a lot on his mind when he touched down in Music City to write songs for Crown. “What made George Floyd any different than me?,” Eric asks. “As I began to chat about this to Joe and Josh during preproduction, raw and unnerved emotion came out of me, and Joe furiously scribbled down notes about it all. These songs came from those outpourings. They’re about my life, and what’s happening in the world right now. When it came time to sing, I had to take breaks between vocals to cry and let it out. I was sharing my experiences as a Black man, and my private struggles. This is me letting the world know what I’ve been through.” Since 1991, the Memphis-born guitarist has blazed a path reinvigorating the blues with a virtuosity and rock swagger that have him being heralded as the second coming of Jimi Hendrix. He was a child prodigy with bottomless talent and fierce determination, and at just 16 years-old released his debut, The Eric Gales Band, on Elektra Records. He’s earned high praise by guitarists’ guitarist and household name axe men such as Joe Bonamassa, Carlos Santana, Dave Navarro, and Mark Tremonti. In addition, he has held his own with some of the greatest guitarists in the world, including Carlos Santana at Woodstock 1994, Zakk Wylde, Eric Johnson, and a posse of others as a featured guest touring with the Experience Hendrix Tour. Eric and Joe reconnected grandly in 2019 when Joe invited Eric to play with him onstage at a blues cruise encore performance. It was the first time the guys had played live together onstage in 25 years, and it has since been named one of the most explosive guitar duels ever, amassing over 3 million plays on YouTube. “There was always a brotherhood with us. When we reconnected, Joe said to me, ‘You’re a badass guitarist; it’s your turn to get your seat at the table to wear your crown’,” Eric recalls. Shortly after their iconic face-melting jam, Eric approached Joe to produce him. Eric reveals: “We cried when we talked about it, he said ‘you have no idea how long I waited for you, now I am going to do my part to lift you where you’re supposed to be.’” Crown finds Eric stepping up to receive his due.  

Cris Jacobs w/ Jessi Phillips

This is a 18 event with standing room only From Baltimore comes Cris Jacobs — an unexpectedly gritty soul-blues singer and guitarist with outlaw country ethos. Blending a variety of musical traditions, Jacobs creates a distinctive voice and sound of his own punctuated by emotive songwriting and explosive guitar playing. Equally at home playing heartfelt Americana ballads or funky blues rockers, Jacobs is known for his mesmerizing live shows, where his improvisational guitar playing, powerhouse band, and deep reservoir of songs make each night a unique experience. Named one of Rolling Stone’s “10 New Country Artists You Need to Know” in 2017, Jacobs has collaborated with the Grateful Dead’s Phil Lesh and Dumpstaphunk’s Ivan Neville, and earned opening slots on tours with Sturgill Simpson and Steve Winwood. In his early days coming up in Baltimore, Jacobs spent 10 years as a member of eclectic rock band The Bridge before making his debut as bandleader and sole songwriter with 2012’s Songs for Cats and Dogs, emerging with renewed focus and a refined sound. With three solo albums to his name, a collaborative record with Ivan Neville aptly titled “Neville Jacobs”, songwriting credits that include bluegrass artists Audie Blaylock and Frank Solivan, New Orleans funksters Dumpstaphunk, and gospel legends Blind Boys of Alabama, Jacobs continues to evolve and display his wide range of writing and performing prowess. “No matter the song”, he says, “I just like to keep it soulful and let the music speak for itself”.

Samantha Fish ft. Jesse Dayton w/ Eric Johanson

This is a 21 and over event.The first-ever collaborative album from Samantha Fish and Jesse Dayton, Death Wish Blues is a body of work born from a shared passion for pushing the limits of blues music. As one of the most dynamic forces in the blues world today, Fish has made her name as a multi-award-winning festival headliner who captivates crowds with her explosive yet elegant guitar work, delivering an unbridled form of blues-rock that defies all genre boundaries. Dayton, meanwhile, boasts an extraordinary background that includes recording with the likes of Johnny Cash and Waylon Jennings, touring as a guitarist for seminal punk band X, working with Rob Zombie on the soundtracks for his iconic horror films, and releasing a series of acclaimed solo albums. Produced by the legendary Jon Spencer of Jon Spencer Blues Explosion, Death Wish Blues ultimately melds their eclectic sensibilities into a batch of songs both emotionally potent and wildly combustible. For both Fish and Dayton, the making of Death Wish Blues helped fulfill their longtime mission of opening up the blues genre to entirely new audiences. “I’ve played all kinds of music in my life, punk and country and Americana and so much else, and for me this was another wonderful rabbit hole to fall down,” says Dayton. “I love that it’s coming at a moment when we’re starting to see the resurgence of rock guitar for the first time in a long time, and I think it’s going to turn a lot of people on to a kind of music they’ve never experienced before.” Fish adds: “The main reason why I make music has always been the connection it creates with others. It’s a way to communicate with the world around me, to tell stories that people can then take and apply to their own lives and maybe feel more understood. We had such a fun time making this album, and I hope that it leaves everyone with the same feeling of joy that we all felt in the studio.”  

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