ARTIST BIOS           

EDDIE SHAW (Airdate: Friday, October 3 at 9:00 pm)— Blues music is the foundation of all music exclaims tenor saxophonist Eddie Shaw. Born in Greenville, Mississippi in 1936, Shaw began his music career in high school playing with Ike Turner’s band and making his way to Chicago on an invitation to join Muddy Waters band at the age of 20. Shaw later toured for 13 years as a member of the Wolf Gang, led by the legendary Howlin’ Wolf.  After his death, Shaw took over the band at its residency at the 1815 Club, renamed Eddie’s Place. By the late 1970s, Shaw had started his own recording career with an appearance on Alligator Records’ Living Chicago Blues (1978) and Have Blues-Will Travel (1980). Eddie is also credited with writing half the songs on The Back Door Wolf (1973).  His discography highlights over a dozen recordings with contributions to the blues that include arranging tracks for The London Howlin' Wolf Sessions (which featured Eric Clapton, Bill Wyman, Ringo Starr and others) and performing with a list of blues notables that included Hound Dog Taylor, Freddie King, Otis Rush and Magic Sam (on his Black Magic album). (#101)

ERIC “GUITAR” DAVIS (Airdate: Friday, October 10 at 9:00 pm)—Eric Davis was born to Dorothy Walker and world-renowned drummer Bobby Davis. At the age of five, Eric began to follow in his Dad’s footsteps as a drummer. By the age of ten, young Eric Davis could be found playing drums in Chicago’s hottest blues clubs, such as The Legendary Checkerboard Lounge and Theresa’s Lounge behind legendary greats such as, the late Jr. Wells, Lefty Dizz, Buddy Guy, BB King, B.B. Odom, Tyrone Davis and many more. One day when Eric “da Drummer” Davis was hanging out at the legendary Checkerboard lounge on 43rd street after school, he asked a local blues bass man, “Flash” to teach him how to play bass. Buddy Guy, overhearing the conversation from behind the bar told Eric that “in order to get all the girls” you have to play this, and handed Eric his old beat up guitar, showing Eric his first chord. Fast forward almost 30 years later and he became Eric ‘Guitar’ Davis, who could be found in Chicago playing the hottest blues clubs in town. Sadly, Eric was killed on December 19, 2013 on Chicago’s South Side making this concert his last recorded performance. He truly deserves the right to be remembered as one of the leading roots from the tree. (#102)

JOANNA CONNOR (Airdate: Friday, October 17 at 9:00 pm)—Joanna’s first venture on stage at the famous club owned by Buddy Guy was with the house band called the 43rd St. Blues Band. They backed up luminaries including Jr. Wells, Buddy Guy, Lefty Dizz, James Cotton, and many others.  Joanna was given her own night at the legendary Kingston Mines at the age of 26, was signed to Blind Pig records soon thereafter, and toured 49 states and 25 countries. She was the first artist not on a major label to be signed to an endorsement deal by Gibson Guitars, Victoria Amps and has been featured in every major city newspaper and guitar magazine. Connor composed the soundtrack for Australian documentary "Being Dad,” and has shared stages with the likes of Jimmy Page, Los Lobos, Robert Cray, BB King, The Doobie Brothers, Kenny Wayne Sheppard, Kenny G, Son Seals, The Neville Bros and a plethora of others. (#103)

COREY DENNISON (Airdate: Friday, October 24 at 9:00 pm)—Born in Chattanooga, Tennessee, Corey Dennison spent a majority of his childhood moving about Tennessee and Georgia.  As a young boy, Corey heard the powerful, soulful sounds of the Blues on late night radio programs and recalls being captivated by the music. He received his first guitar at the age of 6 and began to imitate the music of artists such as Gatemouth Brown, Albert Collins and Albert King. Corey immediately felt a strong connection to Soul music—“I just loved the way Soul music made me feel from my head to my toes. I remember humming along to songs from Wilson Pickett, Curtis Mayfield & Sam Cooke.” This marked a lasting impression on his musical style and is clearly visible today in his soulful vocals and fiery guitar solos. Long-awaited by loyal fans, The Corey Dennison Blues Band debuted in Chicago in early 2013, storming the stages of Buddy Guy's Legends, Rosa's, and Leroy's Hot Stuff. In late 2013, Corey's always entertaining stage presence prompted the release of  "Live in Chicago," a thrilling document of a typical night in a Windy City blues club. The album leaves little doubt that the Blues has found its premier young lion, Corey Dennison. (#104)    

LINSEY ALEXANDER (Airdate:  Friday, October 31 at 9:00 pm)—Born in Mississippi and raised in Memphis, Tennessee, Linsey Alexander was discovered on Chicago's south side -- a down to earth city that truly understands and appreciates music. He grew up in a poor but honest and hardworking family, learning early on that music has the power to lift the spirit and comfort the soul. In Linsey's own words, "Blues music is not hard- it's just a documentary about life." His first guitar—a gift from a family friend who played on the front stoop of Linsey's home in Memphis—was never retrieved from the pawn shop where he left it almost 50 years ago. Using the money to help pay his way to Chicago in 1959, Linsey has been perfecting the art of entertainment blues for the sheer and simple pleasure of it. (#105)

NELLIE TRAVIS (Airdate: Friday, November 7 at 9:00 pm)— Nellie “Tiger” Travis couldn’t be more destined to sing the blues. She was born deep in the delta of Mississippi in the early 60′s. As in most small towns, the church was a main focal point and Nellie grew up singing gospel music. Since then, Nellie has come a long way and in November 2009 was crowned the New Queen Of The Blues for Chicago by Bluesman and WVON radio personality, Purvis Spann who previously had bestowed that honor on Ms. KoKo Taylor, the original Queen. KoKo was a mentor and friend to Nellie, and when she passed in early 2009, Nellie used her songwriting skills to write and record a tribute song to her friend entitled, “KoKo” (Queen of the Blues). Today, Nellie has one of the tightest Chicago Blues bands found anywhere in the world comprised of the best musicians from Chicago’s Blues scene. (#106)

CHICAGO BLUES ALL STARS (Airdate: Friday, November 14 at 9:00 pm)— Chicago Blues All Stars are a musical revue that features some of the most talented, entertaining and legendary artists on the scene today. Together they have created a singular sound that is uniquely eclectic, while drawing on all styles of Americana for inspiration. Killer” Ray Allison & Chicago Slim, whose musical stylings reflect their lifelong commitment as blues disciples, lead CBAS. “Killer” Ray Allison (guitar/vocals) first broke into music during the early 1970's and has been a regular on the international Blues circuit for over four decades. "Killer" Ray has been an integral tour-de-force in bands by James Cotton, Buddy Guy, Koko Taylor, Muddy Waters and Junior Wells. Daniel "Chicago Slim" Ivankovich (guitar/vocals) cut his teeth at the tender age of 18 as the musical director for legendary bluesman, Otis Rush. Over the years, Slim's shared the bill with Rock & Roll Hall-Of-Famers Chuck Berry, Bo Diddley, Willie Dixon, Buddy Guy, John Lee Hooker and Albert King. Prolific credentials as bluesman, media personality and humanitarian have only amplified his standing within the entertainment industry. R&B veteran Johnny Cotton anchors the line-up of All Star Horns, featuring some of the country’s hottest horn players— Gerrick Patton on saxophone and Kenny Anderson on trumpet. They've played with and arranged for a virtual Who's Who of R&B/Rock/Soul artists. Along with Carl CC Copeland on bass, Tony Dale on drums, and Angie Brooks’ dynamic vocals, CBAS put the 'unk in your funk. (#107)

JOANNA SHAW TAYLOR (Airdate: Friday, November 21 at 9:00 pm)—Born and raised in the Black Country in England, Joanne was originally discovered by Eurythmics’ Dave Stewart as a 16 year old guitar prodigy. Through hard work and near-constant touring, she is now one of the hottest young names on the British Blues circuit. She is admired and respected by many leading blues guitarists. Joanne was voted “Best British Female Vocalist” at the British Blues Awards in 2010 and 2011. Her current album, “Almost Always Never,” was helmed by the legendary record producer Mike McCarthy in Austin, Texas.  Joanne was invited as special guest to Annie Lennox performing at the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee concert in June 2012 and she is currently working on her 4th studio album due for release later in 2014. (#108)

MIKE WHEELER (Airdate: Friday, December 5 at 9:00 pm)—has been playing the blues for over 28 years. He did his first blues gig with Muddy Waters sideman Lovey Lee in 1984. In the early 90's he played with bassist & vocalist Joan Baby and then became a member of Cadillac Dave & The Chicago Redhots. He can be heard on their CD, "Checking On My Baby.” Mike also did a stint in the band Sam Cockrell & The Groove, playing on their CD entitled, "I'm In The Business.” He met and began performing with Nellie ‘Tiger’ Travis in 1994. Next he began playing with Big Ray & Chicago's Most Wanted and in 1998 he joined Big James & The Chicago Playboys. He has played on five CD's with Big James including his latest, "The Big Payback Live in Paris," on Blind Pig Records. He then met Peaches Staten and began playing with her band, The Grooveshaker. Mike has performed with Koko Taylor, Buddy Guy, B.B. King, Shemekia Copeland, Jimmy Johnson, Son Seals, Willie Kent and a who's who of today's Chicago Blues! (#109)

QUINN SULLIVAN (Airdate: Friday, December 12 at 9:00 pm)—At age three, Quinn was given a toy guitar for Christmas and it quickly became apparent he had a gift. Local musicians and media began to take notice. Then, six years ago, legendary multi Grammy award winning blues guitarist Buddy Guy had a remarkable encounter with then eight-year-old Quinn when he was invited to join Buddy on stage. Guy was so taken with his incredible guitar skills that he became a mentor to the young musician, leading to invitations to play on his Grammy nominated album “Skin Deep” and tour with him nationally. Quinn was soon being invited to perform at festivals and on local TV and radio programs. He has been actively building his craft sharing stages nationally with Buddy Guy, Jonny Lang and BB King at iconic venues including the Hollywood Bowl, the Apollo Theater and the Beacon. Quinn received a major honor being the youngest artist to play the world renowned Montreux Jazz Festival in Switzerland and performed at Eric Clapton’s Crossroads Guitar Festival at Madison Square Garden in April, along with an all-star lineup. Buddy Guy believes strongly in Quinn: “You don’t come across talent like this every day. People called Ray Charles a genius? I think you’ve got another one here.” (#110)

THE NU BLU BAND FEATURING CARLISE GUY (Airing Friday, December 19 at 9:00 pm)The Nu Blu Band is an energetic multi-piece dance/funk/pop & R&B group that has performed for many private, corporate, and festive events. The band features high quality vocalists (Carlise Guy and Kenyatta Gaines) and musicians from around the Chicago area that have a passion for delivering a precise, funky, and sonic sound. Performing together for seven years, it's not unusual to hear the band jump from the 60's, to the 70's to the 80's to Blues or to today's current sounds. Lead vocalist Carlise Guy is the daughter of Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee, Buddy Guy who began singing in elementary school, church, and other private functions, until she met band members Dan Henley and Marc Maddox in the late 1980's forming the foundation of what is known today as The Nu Blu Band. While joining her father in performances, she brings her own brand of gospel, R&B and Blues to the stage.  Henley (drummer) was born in Memphis, TN, and Maddox (guitarist) born in Chicago have been playing together for over 20 yrs. In 2000, they formed Blind 2 Color, which evolved into The Nu Blu Band. David Holloway (keyboard) received a Bachelor's of Jazz Piano Studies from The Chicago College of Performing Arts at Roosevelt University in 2007 and studied with Laurence Hobgood and Jim Trompeter while attending CCPA. (#111)

BUDDY GUY (Airing Friday, December 26 at 9:00 pm)—Born in Lettsworth, Louisiana, George “Buddy” Guy began playing music at an early age when he received his first two-string guitar. Later he was given a harmony acoustic guitar which he has since donated to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. After moving to Chicago in 1957, influenced under the great Muddy Waters, Guy received his first record contract after participating in a competition in 1958. From Cobra Records to Delmark Records and many others that followed, Guy grew as an American blues guitarist and singer receiving international acclaim. Guy’s work influenced many white blues-rock musicians such as Eric Clapton, Jimmy Page and Stevie Ray Vaughan. In 1960, Buddy became a member of the Muddy Waters’ band and a house guitarist for Chess Records developing a long musical partnership with harmonica player Junior Wells and other artists including Howlin’ Wolf, Little Walter, Sony Boy Williamson and Koko Taylor. With a discography spanning from 1965 to his most recent CD entitled “Rhythm and Blues,” Guy has garnered six Grammy Awards for his work on the electric and acoustic guitars, and for contemporary and traditional forms of blues music.  In 2003, he was awarded the National Medal of Arts, which is awarded by the President of the United States to those who have made extraordinary contributions to the creation, growth and support in the arts in the United States and was ranked 30th in Rolling Stone magazine's list of the "100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time.” By 2004, Guy had also earned 23 W.C. Handy Awards, Billboard magazine's Century Award (Guy was its second recipient) for distinguished artistic achievement and the title of Greatest Living Electric Blues Guitarist. In 2008, Buddy Guy was inducted into The Louisiana Music Hall of Fame and recently received the 2012 Kennedy Center Honors. Guy's autobiography, When I Left Home: My Story, was released on May 8, 2012. This year, Buddy Guy celebrates the anniversary of his blues club, Buddy Guy’s Legends, which he has owned and operated for 25 years. (#112)