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BIG HEAD BLUES CLUB FEATURING BIG HEAD TODD AND THE MONSTERS
‘THE SONGS OF WILLIE DIXON’ ANNOUNCED
July 20, 2016 – DENVER – In a co-promotional effort, Denver Arts & Venues and the Colorado Symphony are pleased to announce Big Head Blues Club, featuring Big Head Todd and The Monsters with three second-generation blues stars, Mud Morganfield, Billy Branch and Ronnie Baker Brooks. The super group will perform “The Songs of Willie Dixon” on Saturday, Oct. 8, 2016 at 7:30 p.m. in Boettcher Concert Hall at Denver Performing Arts Complex.
Tickets go on sale Friday, July 22 at 10 a.m., and are available online www.axs.com.
A Rock and Roll Hall of Fame legend, Willie Dixon has been called the “poet laureate of the blues,” having written over 500 songs including hits “You Shook Me,” “I Just Make Love to You,” and “ Man.” In addition to songwriting, Dixon was also an accomplished bass player, singer and boxer, winning the 1937 Illinois State Golden Gloves Heavyweight Championship and later sparring with Joe Louis. Eventually, Dixon left boxing to sign with Chess Records and, along with Muddy Waters and ’ Wolf, became a key architect of the modern Chicago Blues sound. His work has influenced Muddy Waters, Bo Diddley, Led Zeppelin, Jimi Hendrix and the Rolling Stones.
Big Head Todd and the Monsters are best known for their platinum-selling record Sister Sweetly, and from that record the hit song “Bittersweet,” but have also been fans of the blues since their early days playing music together in high school. In 1997, they recorded a song with John Lee Hooker for their album Beautiful World, and in 2011 began exploring the blues with their first Big Head Blues Club project, “100 years of Robert Johnson,” which featured guest appearances by BB King, Hubert , Charlie Musselwhite, Edwards and more. That album led to a limited number of tour dates under the Big Head Blues Club moniker that same year. “The Songs of Willie Dixon” tribute is the next chapter in the band’s new tradition of honoring influential blues artists.
Joining the band for this tour are three blues singers with royal blood. Mud Morganfield is the eldest son of Muddy Waters and has been taking the world’s blues festivals by storm. He recently released a Blues Music Award-winning album with Fabulous Thunderbirds Kim Wilson.
Ronnie Baker Brooks, son of Chicago blues master Lonnie Brooks, is an accomplished blues guitarist whose headlined at the 2013 Chicago Blues Festival and performed internationally at the Blues Festival in Norway.
Billy Branch is a three-time Grammy Award nominee and played harmonica in Willie Dixon’s Chicago Blues All-Stars band.
Together, these three artists form the 2016 incarnation of the Big Head Blues Club, armed with their own blues material and an incredible playlist of songs from prolific and accomplished songwriter Willie Dixon.
“[Big Head Todd and the Monsters]…helms (and helps orchestrate) a starkly atmospheric collection of blues shuffles and swamp-funk grooves laced with resonating guitars, percussion and keyboards. Some of the more haunting tracks, in fact, sound as if they were composed with an episode of ‘True Blood’ in mind.” —The Washington Post
“[Morganfield’s debut album ‘Son of the Seventh Son’] It’s the sound of modern Chicago blues: dynamic, gritty and electric, yet with a traditional edge that would make his father proud.” —Clash Magazine
“Branch has the chops to indulge in showy barrages of clustered notes, but prefers to let tradition and taste dictate his sets.” —The Chicago Reader
“Ferocious and unrelenting, [Brooks’ album] The Torch may be the year’s best blues album…” —The Boston Herald
Big Head Todd and the Monsters:
Todd Park Mohr, Brian , Rob Squires, Jeremy Lawton
Ronnie Baker Brooks
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ABOUT THE COLORADO SYMPHONY
One of the leading orchestras in the United States, the Colorado Symphony performs more than 150 concerts annually at Boettcher Concert Hall in downtown Denver and across Colorado. Led by internationally renowned Artistic Advisor Andrew Litton, the Colorado Symphony is home to eighty full-time musicians, representing more than a dozen nations, and regularly welcomes the most celebrated artists from the world of symphonic music and beyond. Every season, the Colorado Symphony serves more than 250,000 people from all walks of life, performing a range of musical styles, from traditional to contemporary. Recognized as an incubator of innovation, creativity, and excellence, the Colorado Symphony continually expands its reach through education, outreach, and programming. The Colorado Symphony partners with the state’s leading musical artists, cultural organizations, corporations, foundations, sports teams, and individuals to expose diverse audiences to the transformative power of music. To learn more, visit coloradosymphony.org
ABOUT DENVER ARTS & VENUES
Denver Arts & Venues’ mission is to amplify Denver’s quality of life and economic vitality through premier public venues, arts and entertainment opportunities. Arts & Venues is the City and County of Denver agency responsible for operating some of the region’s most renowned facilities, including Red Rocks Park and Amphitheatre, the Denver Performing Arts Complex, Colorado Convention Center, Denver Coliseum and Civic Center Building. Arts & Venues also oversees the Denver Public Art Program, Create Denver, SCFD Tier III granting process, Arts Education Fund and other entertainment and cultural events such as the Five Points Jazz Festival, Urban Arts Fund, P.S. You Are Here and implementation of IMAGINE 2020: Denver’s Cultural Plan. www.ArtsandVenues.com