2011 Waterfront Blues Festival – Portland

Photo by Steve Spoulos

What a way to start July off! I had the opportunity to perform at the Waterfront Blues Festival in Portland over the 4th of July weekend. It’s the largest blues festival west of the Mississippi. The festival raises an enormous amount of food and money for the Oregon Food Bank. As of the morning of the 5th, they had raised an unofficial record $726,000 to feed Oregon’s hungry.

The weather was perfect and the people were great. Portland is such a wonderful town. I performed on the Miller Stage Sunday afternoon with the band which included Jason Edwards (drums), Jon Bayless (bass) and Rod Cook (guitar). A big thank you to everyone who came to watch. I enjoyed meeting a bunch of new people and fans.  The folks at the Oregon Music News wrote a short review about the show. You can read it HERE.

After my set on the Miller stage, I headed over with guitarist Rod Cook to the Delta Music Experince’s cruise ship, the Portland Spirit. Rod and I performed as part of the Sail On Sister cruise up the Willamet River.

A superb cast of female blues talent entertained on three different decks  aboard ship for cruise goers. These performers included: Duffy Bishop, Fiona Boyes, Lady Kat, Ellen Whyte, Lady A, Lauren Sheehan, the group Acoustic Minds and myself.  I got to play and enjoy the sunshine on the upper deck. I also had the good fortune of  meeting and enjoying the company of the other artists and mingling with the crowd. It was great fun.

On Monday the 4th, I was able to participate in a Showcase Performance on the FedEx Workshop Stage  to promote United By Music (UBM). The event was organized by Barbara Gresham Hammerman who is the lead in bringing UBM

to North America. The showcase featured UBM performer Albertine van Walsem who came from The Netherlands for the festival and included Karen Lovely, Lady “A”, Peter Dammann, Mac Potts and more. Started by Joris van Wijngaarden and Candye Kane,  UBM supports talented people with intellectual and physical disabilities and gives them the chance to perform blues and swing music onstage with a live band for the general public.

Here are pictures of my opportunity performing at the festival on the Miller Stage: