When: Fri., Sept. 23, 7 p.m. 2022
For Steve Grills, the Blues has been a life long journey. Growing up, he heard the music of Big Bill Broonzy, Leadbelly and Lightnin’ Hopkins from his father’s record collection. Through the Beatles, Steve discovered Chuck Berry and he hasn’t looked back since. He has searched out the roots of Rock and Roll, uncovering many great artists who have influenced and inspired him. Primarily among these are Robert Lockwood Jr., Earl Hooker, Freddie King and Albert Collins. Steve befriended Robert Lockwood Jr after meeting him in 1978. In 1992, Robert invited Steve and his band to perform at his Legendary Blues Festival near Cleveland,Ohio. Steve later recorded with Robert on Shakin Smith’s cd Harmonica Wizard. Steve and his band the Roadmasters (named after Earl Hooker’s band) draw their repertoire from these and other artists, giving audiences the opportunity to discover the vitality of the music of these legendary and influential musicians. Steve released a cd with pianist Ernest Lane, After Hours on the Toogaloo label. Steve is grateful to have had the opportunity to record with Ernest. Ernest’s musical career reaches back to the late 1940s when he played and recorded with the enigmatic delta blues guitarist Robert Nighthawk. Ernest backed Nighthawk on his Aristocrat (later Chess) recordings Black Angel Blues (Sweet Black Angel) and Annie Lee Blues. Blues scholars consider these recordings with Nighthawk to be among the greatest Post war Chicago blues records ever made.