Blues legend. That’s all there is to it. Buddy Guy is one of the pioneers of the Chicago blues sound, a continually amazing guitarist, highly energetic performer, and a prime influence on one Mr Jimi Hendrix. At 75 years young, Guy is nowhere near slowing down, playing Australian dates in Sydney and Melbourne with Jonny Lang, as well as a standout set at Bluesfest. I spoke to Guy prior to Bluesfest and just after he finished up a string of dates on the Experience Hendrix tour in the USA.
“I’ve can’t count the times I’ve been to Australia,” Guy says. “I started coming down there in 1972. That was my first time coming down and I had never met [Delta Blues legend] Arthur Crudup before. I think it was the guy who created the Newport Jazz Festival, George Wein – he was taking it around the world, and that was my first visit to Australia. And what a country, man. I just fell in love with it.”
The first round of artists to be announced for the 2010 Byron Bay Bluesfest has been released, and while it’s getting further and further away from what I would call blues, there sure are some kickass guitar players on the bill.
The press release is below, but how about I single out these names for ya:
Not bad, huh?
Colossal first announcement for Bluesfest 21st Celebration Event
The next Bluesfest era begins now in Tyagarah!
October 28th 2009 – The first round of artists to perform at the 21st Anniversary Bluesfest has today been announced! Australia’s most awarded and internationally renowned festival officially begins a new era (and with any luck another excellent 21 years) with the purchase and move to its permanent new home for the 2010 event – the Tyagarah Tea Tree farm just off the Pacific Highway, 10 minutes north of Byron Bay.
Bluesfest 2010 takes place over Easter from Thursday April 1 through to Monday April 5, 2010. The first artist announcement includes a massive array of the best local and international blues, roots, folk, soul, and world artists – with an emphasis on some of the best guitar players of all time.
The first Bluesfest announcement for 2010 includes:
Crowded House, Buddy Guy, Roger Hodgson from Supertramp, Gipsy Kings, Orquesta Buena Vista Social Club®, Jeff Beck, Lyle Lovett, RocKwiz, Jimmy Barnes Plays the Rhythm & the Blues, Jessica Mauboy, The Swell Season, Newton Faulkner, Dr John & the Lower 911, Bèla Fleck’s African Project Featuring Oumou Sangarè & band, Blue King Brown, Al Di Meola World Sinfonia, Gogol Bordello, Fat Freddy’s Drop, Joe Bonamassa, Peter Green & friends, The Flatlanders, Avett Brothers, Justin Townes Earle, Renee Geyer, Colin Hay Band, Old Crow Medicine Show, Lil Band o’ Gold, Brian Auger’s Oblivion Express, AND Robert Gordon & the Gang They Couldn’t Hang – featuring Chris Spedding (Roxy Music), Glen Matlock (Sex Pistols), and Slim Jim Phantom (Stray Cats).
Crowded House plays Bluesfest for first time ever! The Bluesfest team is extremely honoured to present Crowded House for the first time ever as the first announcement headliner, following knock out performances over the years from both Neil Finn and Tim Finn. One of our region’s GREATEST bands, Crowded House is responsible for unforgettable songs such as ‘Weather With You’, ‘Four Seasons In One Day’, and ‘Don’t Dream It’s Over’ to name but a few. Get set for a dynamic musical journey that will draw from the band’s acclaimed 2007 album, another new album due in early 2010, and their exceptionally deep catalogue of fantastic songs.
Festival director Peter Noble said, “We are so energised about the amazing artists in this first announcement – it’s easily our best ever first announcement just looking at the depth across the entire list. We promised a touch of classic rock and a guitar lover’s focus for this festival – and to see how that’s played out, you just have to look at axe shredding maestros like Buddy Guy, Jeff Beck, Al Di Meola, Peter Green (original Fleetwood Mac founder and hero of BB King, Eric Clapton and Jimmy Page!), the Gipsy Kings who are the world’s best flamenco players, Bèla Fleck (stunning banjo virtuoso), and Joe Bonamassa a young blues guitarist who’s recently sold out London’s Royal Albert Hall.
“There’s also tonnes of local and global roots friendly artists too many to mention, Roger Hodgson the incredible singer and songwriter of all those timeless Supertramp hits, Jessica Mauboy who is such an outstanding and genuine artist verified by her recent four awards at the Deadlys and her record seven ARIA award nominations! There’s also Oumou Sangarè who joins Bèla Fleck’s new project and is one the greatest African singers you will ever hear.
“And all this is just the beginning – our second announcement is just around the corner and a stunner too! In fact, we know we have the best Bluesfest bill ever this year, which is a very satisfying way to celebrate our 21st birthday and move to our new home.
“Now at Tyagarah, we’ve got even more room to grow the vision, and give our patrons the REAL festival experience. What we stand for is keeping the counter-culture alive – and the very real notion that music can help heal the world – we’re bringing in artists from Cuba, Mali and even Gypsies all together to support this vision. Longer term, my intention is that Bluesfest will outlive me, and remain a beacon of light that continues presenting the highest quality music on the planet,” concluded Peter Noble.
More room for camping in the Heart of Bluesfest! Bluesfest 2009 was held at Belongil Fields and accommodated 1,800 campers. Bluesfest 2010 looks forward to welcoming patrons on its own land – and will accommodate approximately 6,500 campers! The very spacious and natural environment is right next to the festival grounds and will include a general store, showers and toilets.
The festival itself will feature more space, more music, more stalls, and more areas to chill out, but is all about keeping in the Bluesfest tradition, which is about creating an environmentally sound, peaceful, relaxed and happy home for everyone. Regular shuttle buses will be included to and from the festival into Byron Bay, Mullumbimby and surrounding towns.
More awards for Bluesfest And the Bluesfest awards keep on coming. September 2009 saw Bluesfest recognised as an international winner in The Greener Festival awards. This was for an impressive three years in a row, more than any other Australian festival – and a tribute to the event’s ongoing and long-term commitment to environmental sustainability.
Bluesfest was also the first music festival to be nominated for a prestigious Australian Events Award. Bluesfest was nominated for the Best Cultural or Arts Event alongside the Sydney Festival 2009 and Adelaide Fringe 2009. The award eventually went to the 16th Biennale of Sydney. Bluesfest was also recently nominated as the Best Overseas Festival in the UK Festival Awards! Unlike any other Australian event, Bluesfest has twice had the honour of being nominated as Best International Music Festival by US concert bible “Pollstar” in 2005 and 2006 alongside world renowned events such as Britain’s Glastonbury and Switzerland’s Montreux Jazz Festival. And closer to home, Bluesfest has twice won the prestigious Helpmann Award for Best Contemporary Music Festival in Australia, also in 2005 and 2006.
Tickets can be purchased by: Phoning the Bluesfest office on 02 6685 8310 or visiting the website at www.bluesfest.com.au
Woohoo! My new wah just arrived! My busted old Crybaby must now make room for my shiny new Jim Dunlop Buddy Guy wah. I reviewed one of these a while back (read that review here) and was impressed enough to put one on my wishlist. Well here it is!
Dunlop seems to be going full tilt with the signature wah pedals lately – Dimebag Darrell, Slash, Zakk Wylde, Eddie Van Halen… and finally they’re honouring one of the originators of wah in a blues/rock setting, the great Buddy Guy.
Even at a glance, anyone familiar with Buddy would know this is his wah. It’s kitted out in the same white polka dot on black background as his signature Fender Stratocaster, and his signature is present in moulded form on the treadle. The finish of the pedal itself is very slick, thick and glossy, and looks like it would withstand a huge number of knocks and bumps before starting to show the even the faintest hint of wear. Normally stuff like that wouldn’t bother me on a pedal (I’m sure everyone has a banged-up Boss DS-1 or Crybaby under their bed, if not on their pedalboard), but in the case of the Buddy wah I’d like to preserve that neat polka dot finish for as long as possible.
Similar to the boost switch on the side of the Dimebag wah, there’s a small kick button on the right side of the pedal which allows you to go from the default “Deep” mode to the “BG” mode. There are LEDs on both sides of the pedal to let you know if the effect is engaged (blue) and if Buddy’s “BG” mode is selected (red).
Inside, the pedal features true bypass switching and a Fasel inductor. The inductor is the brain of a wah circuit, if you will, and tone hounds have long praised older Crybaby wahs which used a Fasel brand inductor, over later models which didn’t. In recent years the company has brought back this venerated component in many of its wahs, and it’s become a strong selling point.
Let’s kick the pedal into action and start with the “Deep” mode. The filter sweep of this mode includes a low pass range of 250Hz – 330Hz and a high pass range of 1.3kHz-1.6kHz (by comparison, the ZW-45 Zakk Wylde Signature Wah has a low pass range of 250Hz-350Hz and a high pass range of 1.4kHz-2.4kHz). This mode is very thick and deep sounding, with certain harmonic overtones located at about ¾ of the way through the pedal’s sweep which almost sound like they’re generating an additional octave above whatever note you’re playing. It’s a very addictive sound which works really well for single note riffs, and even better for low, gruff distorted rhythm guitar. On this sound alone a lot of people will be sold on this pedal. It also sounds particularly great when used ‘in reverse’ – that is, rocking the pedal from toe-down to heel-down over the course of a note, instead of the other way around.
Purely on the strength of the “Deep” mode, the Buddy Guy Signature Wah would be a unique addition to the ever-growing stable of Dunlop wahs. The “BG” mode, though it’s really the featured mode of the pedal, is almost a straightforward option compared to the strength of the other mode, and you really do get two pedals in one: A hepped-up but more traditional wah, and the fat, funky “Deep” mode that you’ll have a hard time turning off. While I only had this wah for a few weeks for the purposes of review, I will definitely buy one soon to replace my tired old Crybaby.
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CLICK HERE to buy the Jim Dunlop BG-95 Buddy Guy Wah Pedal from Guitar Center.
National Guitar Workshop Announces 2009 Season with Special Guests Buddy Guy, Paul Gilbert, Jimmy Herring, Jimmie Vaughan and Pat Metheny
The National Guitar Workshop is proud to announce our 2009 season. This year we will be presenting week long workshops across the country and featuring guest artists such as Paul Gilbert, Buddy Guy, Jimmy Herring, Pat Metheny, Jimmie Vaughan, and many more.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Litchfield, CT—Februrary 12, 2009 – The National Guitar Workshop is excited to announce the curriculum and guest artists for the 2009 season. This year’s program will feature Paul Gilbert, Buddy Guy, Pat Metheny, Jimmy Herring, Oteil Burbridge, Pat Martino, Robben Ford, David Wilcox, Robert Lee Castleman, Brent Mason, Stu Hamm, Peppino D”Agostino, Ed Gerhard, Andrew York and John 5. Courses will be offered in rock, blues, jazz, country, classical, music technology, songwriting, and guitar exploration.
Check out www.guitarworkshop.com for more information.
NGW features locations nation-wide with campuses in New York, Austin, Washington DC, Chicago, and Los Angeles. Each location offers a wide variety of courses, all taught by world renowned musicians.
In association with Performing Songwriter Magazine, NGW is proud to present the Songwriting Summit featuring David Wilcox and Robert Lee Castleman. In addition, the workshop is offering a seminar on Country Guitar featuring Brent Mason, and a special Modern Acoustic seminar with Ed Gerhard and Peppino D’Agostino.
Events are happening across the country for rock players. The New York campus will hold two Rock Summits featuring Paul Gilbert and very special guest to be announced, while the LA Rock Summit will include a clinic by world renowned shred virtuoso John-5. Also at our LA Rock Summit we are happy to announce that bassist Stu Hamm will be an Artist in Residence during the summit.
The Jam Summit, taking place at our New York campus will feature both Jimmy Herring (Widespread Panic) and Oteil Burbridge (Allman Brothers Band) giving a special clinic on improvisation and presenting their unique take on the Jam scene.
Taking place in Austin, Chicago, and Connecticut are three Blues Summits, which will include appearances by some of the most influential bluest guitarists in the world. NGW is pleased to have Buddy Guy making a rare clinic appearance in Chicago. Jimmie Vaughan will be giving a clinic on his unique style in Austin, and the New York campus will feature the legendary blues guitarist Robben Ford.
The National Guitar Workshop is very excited to present Pat Metheny at the Jazz Summit in New York. This will be a rare chance to be a part of an intimate workshop with one of the most respected jazz guitarists in history. A great addition to the McLean, VA campus will be the appearance of one of the fathers of modern jazz guitar, Pat Martino, who will be a featured guest in the Giants of Jazz guitar seminar.
Our curriculum has also expanded to also include classes on Pro Tools, Ableton Live and Desktop Music Production. These music technology classes are powered by Apple®.
For a complete list of dates, locations, guest artists and classes offered please check out our website
If you are interested in connecting with other musicians and learning more about National Guitar Workshop from a student’s perspective, you can join our free community site
About National Guitar Workshop:
The National Guitar Workshop is celebrating over25 years of providing high quality music education to students of all ages. The curriculum is wide ranging with courses in Rock, Blues, Jazz, Acoustic, Songwriting, Music Technology and Classical. NGW offers expert instruction for guitarists, bassists, drummers, keyboardists and vocalists.