2010 Harvest Blues Main Stage

Main Stage

Friday 03 September 2010

King King featuring Alan Nimmo

Scotland and England – Act on stage 01.30am

kingSoftly softly” is not a maxim that King King are familiar with. Their electrifying sound and scorching live shows have generated more of a thunderous roar than a buzz. With an almost instant reputation which spread like wildfire through the blues scene and a diary fit to burst, the last year has seen a frenetic schedule of gigs and festival appearances , so much so that Glastonbury has come calling in 2010, which have received outstanding praise and added plenty of new blood to their burgeoning army of followers.

So what’s at the root of all this commotion? Well, aside from seemingly boundless impetus, the band is certainly not lacking in pedigree.   Leading the charge is Alan Nimmo , a front man famed almost as much for his contagious energy as his dazzling guitar work. Bringing up the rear we have Lindsay Coulson . Don’t be fooled by the wry smile – beneath his unruffled exterior lurks a powerhouse of punchy, fat bass!   Running with the King King ethos that more is always more when it comes to talent sees a dynamic Craig Blundell on drums, recently described as “one of the UK’s most versatile and staggeringly talented players ”.    Bennett Holland on the keyboard make up the fierce bluesy foursome- a compelling and highly skilled player, rumour has it that there are no arms beneath Bennett’s sleeves – only more fingers.

With this line-up of top-shelf musicians, King King could only draw their inspiration from the best in the business, ranging from legendary greats such as BB King and Albert Collins to the shining lights of contemporary blues like Joe Bonamassa and John Mayer. Drawing on their combined talent whilst cherry-picking the hottest influences, the band has pushed boundaries to craft a fresh, powerful new angle on blues rock which is as infectious as it is accomplished.   There is no doubt that yet again they will be serving up thickly sliced blues – hot and sizzling.
“a performance that should, without a doubt , put them firmly up with the
best on the British Circuit and probably the European circuit too !   blues Matters


“King King set the night on fire as they blazed into the finale with a superb set of one great song after another..a brilliant performance by the whole band”  – blues in Britain

“..they pulled all the strings of the Audience who fell into their Tartan-kilted bare -need laps.This is Hunky-chunky Blues/Rock at its best”  – the Cumberland times

“Alan Nimmo’s Guitar playing is dazzling , his full-bodied voice passionate…rounding off the first night of Maryport Blues , King King left with a new Crown”  the Cumberland times

Larry Garner and The Norman Beaker Band – Louisiana & England – Act on stage 11.30pm

For a man who came to the blues relatively late in life, Garner wasted no time earning a worldwide reputation as one terrific bluesman. Rooted in the swamp blues tradition indigenous to his Baton Rouge environs, he brings a laudable contemporary sensibility and witty composing skills to his craft.

After military service in Korea, Garner put aside his pen and guitar to work at the Dow Chemical plant in Baton Rouge and raise his family. But he never stopped writing. “All the songs that were on my first two albums on JSP were written while I was working at Dow. When I finished making my rounds, I’d sit at my computer and write songs. I had the time to think out whatever ideas that were on my mind from the night before and put them together properly.”

The Baton Rouge guitarist brings his swamp blues tradition with current subjects and problems of everyday life to the people all over the world.He has a reputation as one terrific bluesman. Maybe his roundabout, a diverse route is a part of why he brings such freshness of vision along with a solid all-around grounding as a musician, poet, and storyteller. The combination is certainly paying off.

He’s spent the last decade filling his passport up with stamps from distant lands, recording highly regarded CDs which are already being reissued as his star continues to ascend, and establishing himself as one of the leading songwriting, performing and entertaining voices of the blues. Garner infuses elements of funk, R & B, and tinges of post-Hendrix fretboard madness into the countryish southern Louisiana swamp blues tradition. The result is an emotionally intense but musically understated meld of technical virtuosity and elegance.

Raised in the gospel traditions, Garner still retains a preacher-like gospel meets blues, vocal approach. He notes his playing freed up when he realized how similar blues and gospel are. “When I got older, I realized the music don’t care who plays it. You play the same notes in the church as you play the blues. Only thing is that the blues don’t talk about Jesus savin’ people. The blues is its own religion that can save people.”

West Coast Blues Review

“Is Larry Garner the best Songwriter in Blues today? Yes, easily” 

He is perhaps the most talented blues songwriter alive today, one of the top five bluesmen on the planet …Real Blues

If you haven’t discovered the blues brilliance of Larry Garner, then you should jump on this bandwagon. These are blues for today, good to the last note stuff

The Norman Beaker Band


norman-beaker” Guitarist- singer- songwriter- producer, Norman leads a five-piece outfit reckoned to be one of the Britains best and most original blues bands; their legendary live performances played with a lot of emotion, a lot of excitement but also with a lot of humour.

Based in the UK in Stockport, near Manchester, they regularly appear on radio and television, play all over Europe and make records. Currently doubling as Chris Farlowe’s Band, they are on tour in the UK and throughout Europe this year. They have also been chosen by Van Morrison to appear as Special Guests on his current UK tour.

Other artists they have worked with over the years reads like a ‘Who’s Who’ of Rock and R’n’B and include: Chuck Berry, Graham Bond, Jack Bruce, Lowell Fulson, Peter Green, Buddy Guy, Paul Jones, BB King, Alexis Korner, Jimmy Page, Robert Plant, Louisiana Red, Fenton Robinson… the list is endless.

Saturday 4th September 2010

Watermelon Slim & The Workers – Oklahoma – Act on stage 11.30pm

watermelonAt least once in every man’s life, everything seems to come together magically. When the road leading to such times is long and gruelling, the zenith becomes exponentially more rewarding. Bill Homans a.k.a. Watermelon Slim is the extraordinary wheel man behind this redemption story road trip.

“Does anyone in modern pop music have a more intriguing biography than “Watermelon Slim”?” Slim was born in Boston and raised in North Carolina listening to his maid sing John Lee Hooker and other blues songs around the house. His father was a progressive attorney and ex-freedom rider and his brother is now a classical musician. Slim dropped out of Middlebury College to enlist for Vietnam. While laid up in a Vietnam hospital bed he taught himself upside-down left-handed slide guitar on a $5 balsawood model using a triangle pick cut from a rusty coffee can top and his Army issued Zippo lighter as the slide.

Returning home a fervent anti-war activist, Slim first appeared on the music scene with the release of the only known record by a veteran during the Vietnam War. The project was Merry Airbrakes, a 1973 protest tinged LP with tracks Country Joe McDonald later covered.

In the following 30 plus years, Slim has been a truck driver, forklift operator, saw miller (where he lost part of his finger), firewood salesman, collection agent, and even officiated funerals. At times, he got by as a small-time criminal. At one point he was forced to flee Boston where he played peace rallies, sit-ins and rabble roused musically with the likes of Bonnie Raitt.
He ended up farming watermelons in Oklahoma – hence his stage name and current home base. Somewhere in those decades, Slim completed two undergrad degrees in history and journalism. Watermelon Slim has built a remarkable reputation with his raw, impassioned intensity He’s one hell of a bottleneck guitarist, and he’s got that cry in his voice that only the greatest singers in the genre have had before him.
“From sizzling slide guitar…to nitty-gritty harp blowing…to a gruff, resonating Okie twang, Slim delivers acutely personal workingman blues with both hands on the wheel of life, a bottle of hooch in his pocket, and the Bible on the passenger seat.” HARP Magazine.

Mojo Magazine 2007 & 2006 #1 Blues Album of the Year
… grinding, greasy and swampy accompaniment as Slim puts fresh twists on age-old blues themes.”
“He’s the best southpaw, slide reso phonic guitarist you’ve ever heard.”
“This truck driver-turned-bluesman is in for the long haul – grab a ride.” 4 stars.” –TR

Omar & The Howlers– Austin Texas – Act on stage 01.30am


omar1Austin, besides being the Texas state capital, is home to much of the best in American roots music. Since the 1970s, ballsy blues players, renegade country pickers, and raw-voiced rockers have mixed & matched their musical styles in Austin’s thriving club scene. And that’s where Kent “Omar” Dykes holds court too. And it’s also where he’s recorded his latest Ruf album, Boogie Man, working with some of his adopted hometown’s most famous songwriters and musicians.

He hails from McComb, Miss., a town with the curious distinction of being home turf for both Bo Diddley and Britney Spears. It’s well established that Omar started playing guitar at seven, took to hanging out in edge-of-town juke joints at 12, joined his first band at 13 – the next youngest player being 50 – and played the sort of music where somebody bustin’ a cap at somebody else was just added percussion.

Omar & The Howlers, with their bone-rattling display of swinging, rocking, rough and tumble blues astonish their audience every time they play a note. They play greasy, old-school blues and R&B, redolent of boogies and shuffles and 12-bar tales of woe. Issuing albums with metronomic regularity they have surfed over the fickle tides of musical fashion.

Featuring the smoldering guitar attack and gravely, gut bucket vocals of frontman Omar Dykes, he and the Texas-based Howlers have established themselves as an international blues sensation steadily winning over fans and garnering awards from around the globe. They have earned their badge of honour while wowing audiences for over 20 years.

“Omar & the Howlers pack a potent mojo that’s dang near irresistible.””he’s tall, wears cowboy boots and has a deep voice with a Southern accent. However, Omar does not carry a gun”

“his in your face vocals and roadhouse guitar playing flow with the power of a bayou at flood stage,”

“Omar’s guitar slice like a freight train pulling a load of Texas tone and bare-knuckles vibe, and his voice has the kind of delivery that could shatter a beer stein. Omar & the Howlers pack a potent mojo that’s dang near irresistible.” – Guitar Player

Sunday 5th September 2010

Chris Bergson Band, featuring the legendary Bruce Katz – New York – Act on stage 11.00pm


bergsonBrooklyn-based guitarist, vocalist, and songwriter Chris Bergson creates his own blend of rootsy blues and soul. Bergson has performed with Levon Helm, Norah Jones, John Hammond, Little Sammy Davis, Ollabelle and Larry Campbell as well as jazz legends Annie Ross and Al Foster. The Chris Bergson Band’s new album, Fall Changes (2 Shirts Records), was recorded at Levon Helm Studios in Woodstock, NY and features stellar performances from Bergson on guitar and vocals

“Chris Bergson is a serious talent,” proclaims LIVING BLUES noting that “Bergson gives early notice to the listener on the album’s opening cut, ‘Gowanus Heights’, of his prowess as both a performer and songwriter. With a horn section that would do the old Stax crew proud, Bergson lures the listener into his world of blues and doesn’t let up until the final cut.” “This magnificent collection by Chris Bergson, recorded at Levon Helm’s Woodstock studios, follows The Band in drawing intuitively and seamlessly from blues, country, folk, funk, soul and jazz. Bergson has the kind of voice that can be sepia-tinted, whiskey soaked or nicotine stained to fit the requisite style and mood, standing alongside Gregg Allman, Dr John, Van Morrison and Danko / Helm.”

featuring Bruce Katz


KatzThis man is as good as it gets. One of the greatest keyboard artists I’ve ever heard” –John Hammond
“Bruce Katz is a spectacular talent! He’s a brilliant composer and arranger who uses uncommon and unique musical intelligence to redefine jazz and blues far beyond the pale of the accepted definitions of keyboard competence. Whether on piano or organ, when you hear Bruce Katz you know it’s him, unmistakably and uniquely.”

Bruce is a regular member of Gregg Allman and Friends as well as the John Hammond Quartet. Bruce and his unique and exciting playing is always in demand and he has also performed and/or recorded with Littlle Milton, Ronnie Earl, Duke Robillard, David “Fathead” Newman, Jerry Portnoy, Debbie Davies, Charlie Musselwhite, Bryan Lee, Rick Holmstrom, and Mighty Sam McClain

 “Chris Bergson Band’s FALL CHANGES ” * * * *
“Chris Bergson Band’s FALL CHANGES ” * * * *
“Bergson’s stirring voice and glorious guitar command immediate attention.”

…these guys could strip down the engine of a soul-blues mobile and put it back together blindfold.” – MOJO
“The Chris Bergson Band’s original blend of American Roots music “confidently hits on R&B, Delta blues, funk, and soul…Versatile, inspired playing with vocals to match.”

“Chris Bergson plays the kind of guitar you can build a house on…it’s  B.B. meets Steve Cropper meets John Scofield.”
ROLL Magazine

Indigenous featuring Mato Nanji – South Dakota – Act on stage 01.00am


indigeiousMato Nanji’s always provided the heartbeat of the band Indigenous – along with the warm dusty voice and the soaring, spirited guitar fireworks that have earned the group from South Dakota’s Nakota Nation a place among roots rock’s elite.
they drew critical acclaim in 1997 with their independently released disc titled “Things We Do” and, since then, they’ve grown their following through steady recording and touring.
INDIGENOUS lays down songs with deep grooves and plenty of passion led by the way-kool bluesy heavy guitar swagger of guitarist Mato Nanji who’s scorching lead guitarwork and soulful deep-pitched vocals are showcased on every tune. Mato calls to mind S.R.V’s masterful guitar attack, reaching similarily combustible levels of intensity while maintaining total command over the instrument. Mato Nanji is no mere S.R.V. wannabe clone but the REAL thing when it comes down to authentic guitar hero status. Fans of awesome guitar-driven blues/rock riffage searching for the next “torch bearer” in the lines of JIMI and S.R.V. should definitely give INDIGENOUS a serious listen.

As many already know, Mato began his journey as an excitable young student of the guitar and heroes like Freddie King, Hendrix and Stevie Ray Vaughan. “I was young and totally in love with the sound of the guitar,” he says. His enthusiasm and his natural born talent turned him into a budding superstar on the guitar scene. But onChasing the Sun, Mato has balanced his guitar with his other musical strengths, elevating the album on all fronts
The Nakota Nation members grew up on South Dakota‘s Yankton Indian Reservation, where their father, Greg Zephier became a spokesperson for Native American rights. A musician in his own right during the 60s and ’70s, Zephier provided his children with records from blues musicians such as B.B. King, Buddy Guy, and Freddie King, and taught them to play their respective instruments. The family started touring together, and soon the children were performing on their own.

Their music is heavily influenced by guitarist Stevie Ray Vaughan, as well as Jimi Hendrix and Carlos Santana. Mato Nanji’s style and skill has drawn comparisons to each of these guitarists. The band has also shared the stage with artists of varying musical genres such as B.B. King, Santana, Bonnie Raitt, Joan Baez, the Indigo Girls, Jackson Browne, Dave Matthews Band, and Los Lonely Boys. The band has headlined its own tours several times.

“Tunes like the opening “Runaway” and “The Way You Shake,” co-written with his sister Wanbdi, have all the trademarks of classic Indigenous: explosive guitar hooks, inventive solos, and an inexorable sense of rhythm ala Jimmy Reed. The six-minute “Leaving” simmers with the passion of Hendrix’s slow blues, . “Fool Me Again,” one of the disc’s pivotal moments, finds Mato in Robert Cray mode, with a gorgeous guitar motif, some inspired solos, and the record’s most memorable chorus.” – blues revue

“take an awesome “musical ride” with Mato Nanji and his killer band INDIGENOUS. If you dig smokin’ blues/rock guitar and soulful vox backed up by great songs and playing, tune into Sunday night and experience the heavy guitar blues power of Mato Nanji & INDIGENOUS.”-   vanguard records

The Main Stage will be held in the Marquee which will be located at the new car park opposite Monaghan Shopping Centre – also known as “Dan McNally’s yard”

The Marquee opens at 9.30pm each night.  A band from the blues trail will entertain you at the bar area until the first main act comes on stage at 11:30pm.

Ticket prices 2010:

  • Friday: €20
  • Saturday: €20
  • Sunday: €20
  • Season ticket covering
    all three nights: €50
  • no hidden charges