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Memphis In May Music Festival

Memphis In May is only a month away.  Here at A, Schwab, we are getting excited about this wonderful annual celebration.  This year, the festival will honor Sweden.  Memphis in May will kick off on May 3 – 5 with the Beale Street Music Festival.

Be sure to stop by A. Schwab for all of your MusicFest provisions.  Some helpful items sold here include ponchos, umbrellas, flip flops, hats, snacks, beverages, and more.  While you are in the store, be sure to check out our old-school, quirck merchandise such as mojo hands, overalls, penny candy, and cast iron.

This year, the festival has a great lineup.  Artists performing at the festival include:

The Black Keys – Alice in Chains – Bassnectar – Daryl Hall & John Oats – The Flaming Lips – Phoenix – The Smashing Pumpkins – ZZ Top – The Black Crowes – The Roots – Sheryl Crow – Gary Clark Jr. – Dwight Yoakam – Edward Sharpe & the Magnetic Zeros – Public Enemy – Three Days Grace – Gavin Degraw – The Wallflowers – Big Boi – Deftones – Jerry Lee Lewis – Patti Smith – Porter Robinson – Mavis Staples – AWOLNATION – Papa Roach – MiMOSA – Gov’t Mule – The Joy Formidable – Lucero Cracker – Yngwie Malmsteen – Charles Bradley – Al Kapone – Deer Tick – Vintage Trouble – Jake Bugg – Coco Montoya – Louise Hoffsten – Davy Knowles – Sonny Burgess and the Legendary Pacers -Shannon McNally – Pickwick – Zac Harmon – The Slide Brothers – Star and Micey – River City Tanlines – Heritage Blues Orchestra – James SuperChikan Johnson – Jimbo Mathus & The Tri-State Coalition – Royal Southern Brotherhood – Will Tucker – Don Trip – Heartless Bastards – Kenny Brown – Brandon Bailey – Markus James & Kinney Kimbrough – Matt Isbell – Barbara Blue – Kingston Springs – Brad Webb – Blind Mississippi Morris – Fuzzy Jeffries & the Kings of Memphis

Click here for more information about Memphis In May.

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Talking the Blues

During the International Blues Competition on Beale Street, A. Schwab will host casual conversations and storytelling about the history, culture, and influence of the Blues.  These conversations will take place on Wednesday, January 30 through Friday, February 1 at 11 am.  They will be led by authorities in the field.  Robert Gordon will speak on Wednesday, Andy Cohen will speak on Thursday, and David Evans will speak on Friday.

Robert Gordon is the author of Can’t Be Satisfied: The Life and Times of Muddy Waters. He produced and directed, with filmmaker Morgan Neville, a documentary based on the book: Muddy Waters Can’t Be Satisfied. That show aired in June, 2003 on PBS’s American Masters series, and on Channel Four in England. Gordon is the writer and associate producer of “The Road To Memphis, an episode in Martin Scorsese’s 7-part series The Blues. His other film making credits include the 1990 documentary, All Day and All Night, featuring B. B. King and Rufus Thomas (it aired on national PBS and was shown in New York’s Museum of Modern Art), and music videos that have aired on MTV, BET, and CMT. Gordon is also the author of It Came From Memphis, a book about Memphis music and culture. He produced the book’s two companion CDs. His other two books are Elvis: The King on the Road (St. Martin’s), and The Elvis Treasures (Random House). Among his accolades is a Grammy nomination for his liner notes to the Al Green box set, Anthology, which he produced. Gordon lives in Memphis with his wife and two children.

Andy Cohen grew up in a house with a piano and a lot of Dixieland Jazz records, amplified after a while by a cornet that his dad got him. At about fifteen, he got bitten by the Folk Music bug, and soon got to hear records by Big Bill Broonzy and the Jim Kweskin Jug Band, both of which reminded him of the music he grew up to. At sixteen, he saw Rev. Gary Davis, and his course was set. He knew he had it in him to follow, study, perform and promote the music of the southeast quadrant, America¹s great musical fountainhead. Although he’s done other things- a certain amount of writing, and physical labor from dish washing and railroading to archaeology, playing the old tunes is what he does best.

David Evans, Professor (A.B.-Harvard University; M.A., Ph.D.-University of California, Los Angeles), directs the Ethnomusicology/Regional Studies doctoral program of the Rudi E. Scheidt School of Music. Dr. Evans is a specialist in American folk and popular music, particularly blues, spirituals, gospel, and African-American folk music. He is the author of Tommy Johnson (London: Studio Vista, 1971), Big Road Blues: Tradition and Creativity in the Folk Blues (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1982), The NPR Curious Listener’s Guide to the Blues (New York: Perigee, 2005), and has written many articles in academic journals, chapters in books, reviews, and dictionary and encyclopedia entries. Dr. Evans has produced over thirty albums and compact discs of field and studio recordings of music for the University of Memphis’ High Water Records. In 2003 he won a Grammy® award for “Best Album Notes.” He performs blues music and has made many concert appearances as a soloist (with guitar) and accompanist in the United States, Europe, and South America, and in the Mid-South region with the Last Chance Jug Band. He joined the faculty at the University of Memphis in 1978.





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Beale Street Brass Note for Andrew “Sunbeam” Mitchell

This event will be held on Wednesday, January 30 at 3pm at A. Schwab

Mitchell owned the old Club Paradise and several nightclubs and businesses on Beale Street. For four decades, Mitchell’s clubs featured some of the biggest names in rhythm and blues. On any given night, patrons at his clubs might see performers such as Ike and Tina Turner, Muddy Waters, Howlin’ Wolf, Fred Ford, Stan Kenton, Lou Rawls, Little Richard, Denise LaSalle, Joe Simon, Count Basie, Albert King and Tyrone Davis. Several artists got their starts at his clubs, including Bobby ‘Blue’ Bland, B.B. King, Little Junior Parker, Johnny Ace and others.


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International Blues Challenge

IBC-w-flagsThe 29th International Blues Challenge will begin Tuesday Night (Jan 29) with the FedEx International Showcase. Wednesday and Thursday night (January 30-31) quarter finals will be conducted. Youth Showcase and Semi Finals will be held Friday night (Feb 1). Saturday (Feb 2) IBC will conclude with Finals in the beautiful Orpheum Theater.

The 2013 International Blues Challenge will be the 29th year of Blues musicians from around the world competing for cash, prizes, and industry recognition. The Blues Foundation will present the 29th International Blues Challenge January 29-February 2, 2013 in Memphis, TN. The world’s largest gathering of Blues acts represents an international search by The Blues Foundation and its Affiliated Organizations for the Blues Band and Solo/Duo Blues Act ready to take their act to the international stage.

In 2012, 119 bands and 86 solo/duo acts entered, filling the clubs up and down Beale Street for the quarter-finals on Wednesday and Thursday, the semi-finals on Friday and the finals at the Orpheum Theater on Saturday. We will have at least that many in 2013.

We at A.Schwab are excited to announce that during the International Blues Challenge (January 29 – February 2), A.Schwab’s former hardware department will be open during store hours to blues travellers for coffee, donuts, storytelling, and old fashioned hospitality. Please come share your favorite stories with fellow blues lovers from all over the world.

We are also considering showing blues films and inviting scholars and authors on the blues to come and share their stories during this week of professional competition, if we see it would be well received. Please contact us if you have suggestions or requests.

Memphis Heritage Calendar Release PartyEvent RoomEvent RoomMemphis Heritage  Calendar Release Party

For more information about the International Blues Challenge, please click here.