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The Blues Harp Explosion featuring Billy Branch, James Harman and Magic Dick /USA, GB/
A project which won´t let any blues fan stay calm. Together with an accompanying band (Andy Knight – guitar, Jeff Walker – bass guitar, Darren Crome – drums) real living harmonica legends will meet on one stage. ´Duels´ of harmonica players belong to a popular spice of blues festivals and here we will have the opportunity to enjoy the real top variants as much as we like.

Billy Branch (1951) is at the moment probably the most significant harmonica player in the style of Chicago blues. He started his professional career as a musician in the early 70s alongside no one less important than Willie Dixon as a member of his band Chicago Blues All-Stars. Later he set up on his own when he formed, together with Lurrie Bell (we saw him at BLUES ALIVE 2009) and Freddie Dixon (Willie Dixon´s son) a band Sons Of the Blues, which with many personnel changes lasts up to now. Besides, he has recorded, for example with Johnny Winter, Koko Taylor or Taj Mahal. In 1990, together with three a generation older harmonica stars Junior Wells, Carey Bell and James Cotton he played on one of the best-selling blues albums of all times Harp Attack!.

Magic Dick (born Richard Salwitz, 1945) besides harmonica plays also the trumpet and saxophone, and with all these instruments he became famous playing in an above all in the USA popular J. Geils Band, which he co-founded in 1965. At the end of the 70s, he was even labeled the ´best white blues harmonica player´ by the Rolling Stone magazine. After the break-up of J. Geils Band in the 80s (which, however, has played together several times on various occasions since then) he formed a band Bluestime, which in a unique way mixed Chicago blues with jazz. Recently he´s performed with a number of various projects, he´s been, for example (together with Buddy Guy, Irma Thomas, Allen Toussaint and others) on the Legendary Rhythm & Blues Revue tour.

James Harman (1946) has been an exceptionally experienced musician since an early age. Not only did he master so many instruments that he would be able to take any part in a standard band (besides harmonica he can also play the piano, guitar, keybords and drums), but most importantly, in the 70s he was a bandleader of Icehouse Blues Band in California, which focused on accompanying famous musicians who came to that region without their own bands. And so he played with such aces as, for example Muddy Waters, John Lee Hooker, all three most famous Kings – Freddie, Albert and B. B., or with Albert Collins. Since the 80s he´s been on the American blues scene on his own behalf crossing the world leading his own band, and now and then helping out some of his friends. Such as, for example the ZZ Top band on their albums Mescalero and La Futura.

 

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