The Music Maker Foundation’s Music Maker Revue will be performing in London Monday, March 7th. The Revue players have colorful names such as Drink Small, Sweet Betty, Whistlin’ Britches and Little Pink Anderson, and their showmanship leaves nothing to be desired: one-man-band Adolphus Bell with his sparkling crown, Beverly Guitar Watkins who was playing her instrument behind her back before Jimi Hendrix ever laid hands on a Stratocaster, frail-looking Captain Luke and his incredible, booming voice.
If Music Maker Foundation’s Tim Duffy ever entertained romantic ideas about the blues, they vanished when he saw the depressing conditions in which lived Guitar Gabriel, the man that ignited the initial flame for the Music Maker Relief Foundation. “There was a pungent smell of urine, hundreds of spent lighters on a coffee table, a broken TV set, and cockroaches everywhere,” as was then described the dilapidated apartment that Gabriel shared with an elderly girlfriend. Yet the minute the old man picked up his guitar and started singing, he turned his miserable surroundings into an ode to sheer beauty.
Through Guitar Gabriel, Duffy did not just discover the transformational power of the blues. He also found out about the regular haunts of the old North Carolina bluesman, the living music that was still being played every weekend in drink houses and juke joints throughout the South, the many men and women who’d practiced their art anonymously for decades.
Instead of starting another profitable revival, Duffy decided to repay these unsung heroes for their artistic generosity in a more ethical way by launching the Music Maker Relief Foundation, a non-profit organization whose proceedings help the artists in their everyday needs: food, housing, medical bills, or a decent funeral on the day of the great rendezvous.
For the past 15 years, with the moral and financial backing of people like B.B. King, Eric Clapton and Taj Mahal, the Music Maker Foundation has brought dozens of artists to the attention of blues fans. In addition to the various recordings made by the Foundation, Duffy has started the Music Maker Revue, a flamboyant show that takes spectators all the way to the drink houses of the South.
Today, thanks to the Music Maker Revue, these bluesmen get rave reviews wherever they appear, from Brazil to Australia and Europe.
– Dr Burt
– Eddie Tigner
– Alabama Slim
– Pat Wilder
– Albert White
– Pat “Mother Blue” Cohen
– Pura Fé
– Ardie Dean
Recordings available in North America: They Call Me Dr. Burt, Slippin’ in by Eddie Tigner, Route 66 by Eddie Tigner; Soul of the Blues by Albert White; Full Moon Rising by Pura Fe; Follow Your Heart’s Desire by Pura Fe
Recordings available in Europe: Slippin’ in by Eddie Tigner; Soul of the Blues by Albert White; Full Moon Rising by Pura Fe; Live! A Blues Night in North Carolina (2CD) by Pura Fe; Tuscarora National Blues by Pura Fe; Hold the Rain by Pura Fe
Mon 7 Mar / 7.30pm / Bar / £8 adv / £11 door
Book tickets online or call our Box Office on 020 7613 7498
Book Online Now7:30 pm, Monday, March 7th
35 – 47 Bethnal Green Road, London, E1 6LA
020 7613 7498
Author: World Music Central News Department
World music news from the editors at World Music Central