News / Arts & Entertainment

'Boogaloo' Bolden's New Blues Album Crosses Borders

'Boogaloo' Bolden's New Blues Album Crosses Bordersi
X
February 18, 2014 10:33 PM
For more than 30 years, trumpet player James “Boogaloo” Bolden has been working with famed blues singer and guitarist BB King. But when Bolden is not on the road with the “King of Blues” he is in his hometown of Houston, Texas, to play with his own band that is now featuring some blues by way of Mexico. VOA's Greg Flakus reports from Houston.
Greg Flakus
For more than 30 years, trumpet player James “Boogaloo” Bolden has been working with famed blues singer and guitarist BB King.  But when Bolden is not on the road with the “King of Blues” he is in his hometown of Houston, Texas, to play with his own band that is now featuring some blues by way of Mexico. 

James “Boogaloo” Bolden has played with everyone from Duke Ellington to Lightnin' Hopkins, but he says he has learned the most from BB King.

“He is the kind of teacher who shows you without actually saying this is what you should do," said Bolden.

BB King is now 88-years-old and still touring.  But Bolden uses whatever time off he has to play with his own band.

It helps having his new CD played on radio programs like “Howlin' the Blues,” hosted by James Nagel at Houston's KPFT FM.

“I have the real pleasure of introducing this next one: The James Boogaloo Bolden Blues Band - 'No News, Jus' The Blues,'" said Nagel. “No telling where this is going to go.  I hope it goes great places.  As we all know, BB [King] is getting up in age and James has put this band together, I guess, to prepare for the inevitable, you know, realistically.”

In a band brimming with talent, one standout is saxophone player and singer Evelyn Rubio, a native of Mexico City who has a passion for the blues.

She came to Bolden's recording session with a suggestion.

“She came into the studio, we were almost near the end of the session, and she said, 'I have another song I'd like to do.' And I said, 'Okay.' She had a little tape of it and we listened to it," said Bolden.

The song - Border Town - was written by a friend of Rubio's from the Mexican border city of Tijuana - but her sultry delivery makes it her own.  

“I have been traveling around playing the blues, trying to survive, so I really feel it, it is part of me," said Rubio.

She also recorded a Spanish version of the song for the CD, and hopes blues music will become more popular in Mexico and elsewhere.

“I respect the story of black people and how blues came up.  But let me tell you: me, as a Mexican person, it does not matter what race or color or whatever; everybody has blues stories in their life," she said.

James Bolden is happy to see this music spread internationally.

“I think it is a great thing, because the more people that play the blues, it will keep it alive," he said.

James Bolden is back out on tour with BB King now and Evelyn Rubio is preparing her own solo CD, with songs in English and Spanish, for release later this year.

You May Like

ASEAN Ministers Set to Push for South China Sea Agreements

According to documents obtained by VOA Khmer, ministers will stand up for 'freedom of navigation, unimpeded lawful maritime commerce, trade and over flight' More

Puerto Rico Defaults on $58M Debt Payment

Payment was due Saturday, default is first in country's 117 years as a United States possession More

Turkish Public Fears Jihadists More Than Kurds

Turkey facing twin threats of terrorism by Islamic State and PKK Kurdish separatists, says President Erdogan’s ruling AK Party More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Iraqi Yazidis Fear Death of Their Communityi
X
Sharon Behn
August 03, 2015 2:23 PM
A year ago on August 3, Islamic State militants stormed the homelands of Iraq’s Yazidi minority, killing hundreds of men and enslaving thousands of women. The scenes of desperate Yazidi families crowding on the top of Sinjar mountain without food or water spurred Kurdish fighters into action, an emergency airlift and the start of the U.S. airstrike campaign against the Islamic State Sunni extremists. VOA's Sharon Benh reports from northern Iraq.
Video

Video Iraqi Yazidis Fear Death of Their Community

A year ago on August 3, Islamic State militants stormed the homelands of Iraq’s Yazidi minority, killing hundreds of men and enslaving thousands of women. The scenes of desperate Yazidi families crowding on the top of Sinjar mountain without food or water spurred Kurdish fighters into action, an emergency airlift and the start of the U.S. airstrike campaign against the Islamic State Sunni extremists. VOA's Sharon Benh reports from northern Iraq.
Video

Video Bangkok Warned It Soon Could Be Submerged

Italy's Venice and America's New Orleans are not the only cities gradually submerging. The nearly ten million residents of the Bangkok urban area now must confront warnings the city could become uninhabitable in a few decades. VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from the Thai capital.
Video

Video Inclusive Gym Gets People With Disabilities in Fitness Spirit

Individuals with special needs are 58 percent more likely to be obese than the general population. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, they also have an increased likelihood of anxiety, depression and social isolation. But a sports club outside Washington wants to make a difference in these people's lives. With Carol Pearson narrating, VOA's June Soh reports.
Video

Video Astronauts Train Underwater for Deep Space Missions

Manned deep space missions are still a long way off, but space agencies are already testing procedures, equipment and human stamina for operations in extreme environment conditions. Small groups of astronauts take turns in spending days in an underwater lab, off Florida’s southern coast, simulating future missions to some remote world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Special Olympics Show Competitors' Skill, Determination

Special Olympics competitions will wrap up Saturday in Los Angeles, and the closing ceremony for athletes with intellectual disabilities will be held Sunday night. In a week of competition, athletes have shown what they can do through skill and determination. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan reports.
Video

Video Civil Rights Leaders Struggled to Achieve Voting Rights Act

Fifty years ago, lawmakers approved, and U.S. President Lyndon Johnson signed, the Voting Rights Act of 1965. The measure outlawed racial discrimination in voting, giving millions of blacks in many parts of the southern United States federal enforcement of the right to vote. Correspondent Chris Simkins introduces us to some civil rights leaders who were on the front lines in the struggle for voting rights.
Video

Video Shooter’s Grill: Serving Food with a Touch of the Second Amendment

Shooter's Grill, a restaurant in Rifle, Colorado, attracts visitors from all over the world as well as local patrons. The reason? Waitresses openly carry loaded firearms as they serve food, and customers are welcome to carry them, too. VOA's Enming Liu and Lin Yang paid a visit to Shooter's Grill, and heard different opinions about this unique establishment.
Video

Video Despite Controversy, Business Owner Continues Sale of Confederate Flags

At Cooter’s, a store in rural Sperryville, Virginia, about 120 kilometers west of Washington, D.C., Confederate flags are flying off the shelves. The red, white and blue battle flag, with 13 white stars representing the Confederate states, was carried by southern forces during the U.S. Civil War in the 1860s. The South had seceded from the Union over several key issues of disagreement, including slavery. VOA’s Deborah Block has the story.
Video

Video Booming London Property a ‘Haven for Dirty Money’

Billions of dollars of so-called ‘dirty money’ from the proceeds of crime - especially from Russia - are being laundered through the London property market, according to anti-corruption activists. As Henry Ridgwell reports from the British capital, the government has pledged to crack down on the practice.
Video

Video Hometown of Boy Scouts of America Founder Reacts to Gay Leader Decision

Ottawa, Illinois, is the hometown of W.D. Boyce, who founded the Boy Scouts of America in 1910. In Ottawa, where Scouting remains an important part of the legacy of the community, the end of the organization's ban on openly gay adult leaders was seen as inevitable. VOA's Kane Farabaugh reports.

VOA Blogs

New in Music Alley

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Harry Wayne Casey – “KC” of KC and the Sunshine Band – comes to VOA’s Studio 4 to talk with "Border Crossings" host Larry London and perform songs from his new album, “Feeling You! The 60s.”