Called “Blues At The Crossroads: The Robert Johnson Centennial Concerts,” the tour commemorates Johnson’s 100th birthday via musical collaborations as well as a studio album coming out in conjunction with the outing.
That’s right. A studio album. Usually tours beget live albums, but this time a tour is directly responsible for a studio album with “Blues At The Crossroads” musicians setting time aside this fall to commit their collaborations to tape at Memphis’ Ardent Recording Studios. Expect the CD to drop in time for the tour.
Of the musicians honoring Johnson, David “Honeyboy” Edwards has a direct link back to the blues master, having witnessed Johnson’s last public performance.
The tour begins at San Francisco’s Regency Ballroom Jan. 28, plays Costa Mesa’s Orange County P.A.C. Jan. 29 and stops in San Diego for two shows at Anthology Jan. 30.
Other stops include Santa Barbara, Ann Arbor, Chicago, Kansas City, Washington, Boston, Princeton, Milwaukee, Omaha, Minneapolis and Urbana, Ill, with additional dates expected to be announced.
Seems you can’t mention Johnson without mentioning the “crossroads,” hence the title of this tour. As the old legend goes, Johnson met up with Satan himself at a crossroads, with Ol’ Scratch bestowing upon the young musician the ability to play blues guitar like no one had ever played it before.
“We both wanted to create a blues show that was not just another blues show, but a show that was truly unique,” said Ron Hausfeld, who is co-producing the tour with Jack Randall of blues & jazz talent agency Ted Kurland Associates. “We want people to walk away saying, ‘Wow…that was cool…I’ve never seen anything like it.”
For more information, click here for Big Head Todd & The Monsters’ website, here for David “Honeyboy” Edwards’ site, here for Hubert Sumlin’s web home and here for the Cedric Burnside & Lightnin’ Malcom website.