Mavis Staples Headlines San Diego Blues Festival

by Wendy Lemlin

Blues Fest

So, what are you doing on Saturday? If your answer isn’t “attending the 7th annual San Diego Blues Festival”, you’ll be missing out on a great day of music and fun, not to mention the opportunity to support the very worthy Jacobs & Cushman San Diego Food Bank in their fight against chronic hunger.  With a lineup that includes the inimitable Mavis Staples, Joe Louis Walker, California Honeydrops for headliners, and local favorites like Rick Estrin and the Nightcaps, Missy, Mercedes, & Sharifa, Big Jon & the Nationals, Chris James, Patrick Rynn, & Aki Kumar, Blue Largo, and TJ & the Suitcase, Saturday promises to be a stellar day.

mavis s  Now in her seventh decade and still belting out the music, Grammy winner and member of both the Blues and Rock And Roll Halls of Fame, Mavis Staples has been called “an alchemist of American music” who consistently “crosses genre lines like no other musician since Ray Charles.” This past December, she was awarded our nations highest arts accolade, the Kennedy Center Honor. Ms Staples will be headlining the sixth annual San Diego Blues Festival on Saturday, September 9, 2017. With her trademark deep growl more powerful than ever, Mavis shouts, croons, scats, swoops and testifies like no one else can, making every song her own. Catch her on the BCS stage at 6:30 pm.

Jope Louis WalkerThis year’s lineup also includes another Blues Hall of Famer, Joe Louis Walker, whose fiery guitar and emotionally wrenching vocals have become staples of the blues world since his debut blues album “Cold Is the Night” in 1985.  He’s recorded 26 blues albums since then, carving out a singular identity in a business that too often regales in cloning imitation artists. He’ll be performing on the Baker Electric Solar Stage at 5:30 pm.

california honeydropsAt 4:30 pm, The California Honeydrops, a Bay Area favorite, will bring their good time eclectic sounds to the BCS stage. It’s said that The California Honeydrops don’t just play music—they throw parties that all are invited to. Drawing on diverse musical influences from Bay Area R&B, funk, Southern soul, Delta blues, and New Orleans second-line, the Honeydrops bring vibrant energy and infectious dance-party vibes to their live shows.

The San Diego Blues Festival was founded in 2011with the mission to provide great blues music at an affordable price, while raising money to support the battle against hunger in our community. Since then, the Jacobs & Cushman San Diego Food Bank has benefited from some of the best blues musicians on the planet and the festival goers have helped contribute well over 12 tons of food and more than $585,000 to help the Food Bank fight hunger in San Diego County. With the help of more than 28,000 volunteers, the Jacobs & Cushman San Diego Food Bank feeds nearly 370,000 people per in month in San Diego County through direct food distributions to those in need and through a network of more than 350 nonprofit partners, including food pantries, soup kitchens, shelters, low-income daycare centers, senior centers, churches, schools and day centers for the elderly and disabled.

The Festival is happening at Embarcadero Marina Park North from noon-8 pm. Click here for for tickets and info.

So, with that being said, and now that you’ve seen the fantastic lineup, what are you doing on Saturday?

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