Mr. B's Joybox Express is getting ready to bike the length of the Mississippi River, from Minnesota to New Orleans this fall, and WEMU is getting ready to follow the ride. Mark Braun, aka Mr. B., spoke with WEMU's David Fair about the project and what the Joybox entourage plans to do along the way.
While many media outlets are putting 2012 "to bed" for the next month, WEMU hosts continue to discover exciting new music to keep you grooving in 2013. One of our recent discoveries is "Mixology" by veteran jazz organist Chester "CT" Thompson.
When I opened the package containing "Everybody Ought To Treat A Stranger Right" by pianist, singer and guitarist Julian Fauth, I knew that WEMU hosts would be happy to find this in the library. His 2005 CD, "Songs Of Vice And Sorrow" was a host and listener favorite even though Julian was then a relatively young and unknown performer. When I put the 2012 sound of Julian Fauth into the player, I was fully convinced. This disc is tailor-made for WEMU.
Buoyed by being selected as WEMU's blues fundraising premium, Robert Cray's newest CD, "Nothin' But Love" was the most played disc this past week on 89.1. Even if Cray's recording hadn't been chosen as a WEMU "thank-you gift", it would likely have risen to the top of our "Sweet Sixteen" by virtue of it's excellence.
In anticipation of her appearance at The Ark on October 11th, WEMU hosts featured the outstanding new CD "33 1/3" by the new "Queen of the Blues", Shemekia Copeland. Ms. Copeland actually comes from blues royalty -- her father is the legendary blues guitarist and composer, Johnny Clyde Copeland.
We knew it was just a matter of time, but the WEMU staff knew that "33 1/3" by Shemekia Copeland would eventually claim the top spot on our "Sweet 16". If any CD validates her standing as the successor to Koko Taylor as "Queen Of The Blues", this one surely does. She has emerged on a new label with new repertoire, but her commitment to true, deep blues is as strong as ever.