Day 1: January 31, 2010
Again the Blues
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You'd think I'd eventually get enough blues for awhile and, after an afternoon of great music in Columbus, Ohio, I think maybe I have. It won't be long, though, until my appetite is back. I first learned of the tribute to Columbus blues legend Willie Pooch because of its being held at friend David Wickline's Roadhouse 66. It was on then off my schedule as a concert for another worthwhile cause came together for the same afternoon in Cincinnati. Then, when I decided to see what Groundhog Day is like in Punxatawny, Pennsylvania, the Columbus benefit seemed like a perfect stop along the way.

The doors didn't open until 2:00 but the place was already packed when I arrived about fifteen minutes later. The few square feet of open floor in the first of my dark pictures disappeared long before the music began. A group called the Upsetters, the name of Willie's most recent working band, took the stage first. They'd barely warmed up before the man himself, as well dressed as ever, showed up to join them. There was a time when I'd have wiggled my way to the front of the stage but I'm a mellower and lazier guy these days. I apologize to the Upsetters for being able to post only a crappy over the crowd shot of their fine performance.

The instant crowd was a surprise for everyone including owner Dave. His attempt to work in lunch was not particularly successful. He managed just a few bites before returning to solving problems. When I'd told Dave I was coming, he replied that I could "...park the 'Vette by the back door" When I revealed that this would be a Vibe not 'Vette trip, I figured that nullified any special considerations. Not so. The spot next to Dave's HHR was beautifully marked and I believe the Vibe or possibly the Corvette would have fit in there had I arrived before it became surrounded and inaccessible. I think this is the second time that someone, playing loose with the term, has called me a photographer. Dave, your efforts are much appreciated.

Occasional aisle clearing was attempted to avoid giving the fire department a reason to shut things down and that allowed me a clearer and closer shot now and then. Here we have T-Bone and the Usual Suspects.

Willie Pooch has had some serious medical problems including a recent leg amputation. It didn't seem reasonable to expect him to attend. Not only did he attend, he picked up the mic several times for some strong voiced performances. The first two pictures are with Dave Workman on guitar. The last two are with what I believe is a group named Four on the Floor.

Note that Dave and T-Bone Backus (previous panel) flew in from different coasts for today's tribute. Dave from California and T-Bone from Delaware.

Willie left the building after the Four on the Floor set but the music kept coming. Here are two pictures of Ray Fuller & The Bluesrockers and two of Teeny Tucker. Teeny was the only performer of the day I recall seeing before.

This is Rachel, the gal who kept me happy all afternoon. Serving drinks and food to that crowd was not an easy chore but the staff seemed to handle it in stride. I know the day was not without problems but I saw nothing of significance.

The stage prepared to go into jam mode when Teeny finished. I know there were lots of good musicians in the house and that a lot of good music was about to come down but I decided I'd had enough blues, enough beer, and enough standing. Off to the motel for me.

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