News / Arts & Entertainment

New Swississippi Records Label Features Rising Blues Stars

New Swississippi Records Label Features Rising Blues Stars
New Swississippi Records Label Features Rising Blues Stars

Multimedia

Audio
Doug Levine

Chicago, Illinois has a long tradition of producing some of today's finest blues.  The tradition continues with the introduction of three rising blues stars on a new label called Swississippi Records.

Aspiring harmonica player Chris Harper found one way of entering the music business was to start his own record label.  Determined to follow his dream, he sold his convention display company in Switzerland, and along with Chicago blues producer Dave Katzman, launched Swississippi Records.

Katzman describes Harper's sound as a blend of Chicago and Mississippi blues.

"Chris has his own style.  He's taken all the years of studying Sonny Boy Williamson and Junior Wells and Carey Bell; I could go down the list of the kings of harp," he said. "He's done his homework and he turns it around and makes it his style."

Harper makes his label debut with "Four Aces and a Harp," featuring noted Chicago-area blues players John Primer, Willie "Big Eyes" Smith, Jimmy Burns, and Robert Stroger.

The lineup also includes singer and washboard player Peaches Staten, whose album was recorded live at Buddy Guy's world-famous Legends nightclub.  According to Dave Katzman, a longtime sound engineer at Legends, the club provided the perfect setting for Staten's first release.    

"When she plays to an audience, and this is why we came out with a live album first, she owns the room and everybody in the room has a great time," he said. "For a performer to be able to really communicate with an audience and really bring them into it and make it their party, I think that's a really good talent.  I hope that comes across on the album."

Rounding out the Swississippi roster is Rob Blaine, a 29-year-old guitarist from Chicago. Dave Katzman believes he'll enjoy a long career.

"Rob is a young guy who is incredibly talented and has, I don't even know how to describe it, but he has a very mature style of singing and he also has a very knowledgeable style of guitar," he said.  "A lot of younger guys don't really bring in the older styles.  Rob was Little Milton's guitar player for awhile and he was mentored by him.  He's got a lot of Freddie King in him and he's got a lot of Otis Rush in him.  He's done his homework."

You May Like

In China, Mixed Signals on Ebola Controls

How authorities are monitoring at-risk individuals remains unclear, including whether there are quarantines for Chinese health workers returning from West Africa More

Video Women Voters Anxious Ahead of US Elections

Analysts say if women are focused on national security, it could be bad news for Democrats More

Solar's Future Looks Brighter

New technology and dropping prices are contributing to a surge in solar power 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.
Women Voters Anxious Ahead of US Electionsi
X
October 31, 2014 4:10 AM
Public opinion polls show American voters are deeply dissatisfied with their government and anxious about threats from abroad. This is especially true for a key voting group both Republicans and Democrats are trying hard to win over: women. Analysts say if women are focused on national security, it could be bad news for Democrats, with majority control of the Senate at stake. VOA’s Cindy Saine looks at the crucial role women voters will play in deciding the elections.
Video

Video Women Voters Anxious Ahead of US Elections

Public opinion polls show American voters are deeply dissatisfied with their government and anxious about threats from abroad. This is especially true for a key voting group both Republicans and Democrats are trying hard to win over: women. Analysts say if women are focused on national security, it could be bad news for Democrats, with majority control of the Senate at stake. VOA’s Cindy Saine looks at the crucial role women voters will play in deciding the elections.
Video

Video Victorious Secularists Face Challenge to Form Government in Tunisia

Official results from Tunisia show the Islamist Ennahda party has failed to win the second free election since the so-called "Arab Spring" uprising in 2011. Ennahda, which handed power to a government of technocrats pending the elections, lost out to the secular party Nidaa Tounes. Henry Ridgwell reports from London that the relatively peaceful poll offers some hope in a volatile region.
Video

Video Africa Tells its Story Through Fashion

In Africa, Fashion Week is a riot of colors, shapes, patterns and fabrics - against the backdrop of its ongoing struggle between nature and its fast-growing urban edge. How do these ideas translate into needle and thread? VOA’s Anita Powell visited this year’s Mercedes Benz Fashion Week Africa in Johannesburg to find out.
Video

Video Smugglers Offer Cheap Passage From Turkey to Syria

Smugglers in Turkey offer a relatively cheap passage across the border into Syria. Ankara has stepped up efforts to stem the flow of foreign fighters who want to join Islamic State militants fighting for control of the Syrian border city of Kobani. But porous borders and border guards who can be bribed make illegal border crossings quite easy. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video China Political Meeting Seeks to Improve Rule of Law

China’s communist leaders will host a top level political meeting this week, called the Fourth Plenum, and for the first time in the party’s history, rule of law will be a key item on the agenda. Analysts and Chinese media reports say the meetings could see the approval of long-awaited measures aimed at giving courts more independence and include steps to enhance an already aggressive and high-reaching anti-corruption drive. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video After Decades of Pressure, Luxembourg Drops Bank Secrecy Rules

European Union finance ministers have reached a breakthrough agreement that will make it more difficult for tax cheats to hide their money. The new legislation, which had been blocked for years by countries with a reputation as tax havens, was approved last week after Luxembourg and Austria agreed to lift their vetoes. But as Mil Arcega reports, it doesn’t mean tax cheats have run out of places to keep their money hidden.
Video

Video Kobani Refugees Welcome, Turkey Criticizes, US Airdrop

Residents of Kobani in northern Syria have welcomed the airdrop of weapons, ammunition and medicine to Kurdish militia who are resisting the seizure of their city by Islamic State militants. The Turkish government, however, has criticized the operation. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from southeastern Turkey, across the border from Kobani.

All About America

AppleAndroid

New in Music Alley

Beyond Category

At Washington’s Blues Alley jazz singer Jane Monheit and her quartet perform songs made famous by Judy Garland. Monheit sits down with "Beyond Category" host Eric Felten to talk about her music, the singers who influence her, and her life traveling with family on tour.