words by Ryan Schleicher
This year’s Waukesha BluesFest is a wonderful combination of those very close to us and those very far away — the two nighttime headliners for the fest are UK Blues greats John Mayall and Savoy Brown (random tidbit: As a teenager, Mayall got media attention for moving out of his house and into a backyard treehouse).
While it might be interesting that Mayall lived in a treehouse (even brought his first wife to live with him there), more historically important is that John Mayall acted as a one-man blues factory. After Eric Clapton left for Cream-er pastures, Mayalls’s Bluesbreakers band spit out Mick’s Fleetwood (Fleetwood Mac) and Taylor (Rolling Stones), Andy Frasor (Free) and a ton of other players who went on to gain their own acclaim. Clapton once said, “John Mayall has actually run an incredibly great school for musicians.”
When you think Savoy Brown you should think Kim Simmonds. The man and the band’s history is long and great and took many sharp, but positive, turns. But at the end of the day, Simmons is a blues man through and through and it’s really freaking cool to have Savoy Brown so close to home.
As we mentioned, Waukesha BluesFest also features those very close to us. And by that we mean great local blues bands in Matt Tyner, The Charles Walker Blues Band, Tweed Funk, Andrew Gelles Band, John Stano and much more.
The Waukesha BluesFest takes place this Friday and Saturday, August 12th and 13th, at Naga-Waukee Park in Delafield from 12:30 p.m. – 10:30 p.m.