River City Blues Competition

From staff reports

The Blues, Jazz and Folk Music Society will host its 26th annual River City Ohio Blues Competition Friday and Saturday at the Lafayette Hotel in downtown Marietta.

Nine local and regional blues acts will compete for the chance to perform in an international blues competition.

The performers will compete for cash prizes and BJFMS sponsorship to the International Blues Challenge in 2019 in Memphis, Tenn.

The cash prizes are $1,000 for first, $500 for second and $300 for third. The winner will also receive an additional $500 when they register for the IBC competition. If second or third place also qualify to go to Memphis on the BJFM Stage, they will also receive an additional $500 when they register for the challenge, officials said.

The River City Ohio Blues Competition is the oldest and largest blues talent competition in Ohio, with 12 competition slots to be filled by local and regional blues acts from all over Ohio, West Virginia, Pennsylvania, Michigan and other states.

The IBC represents an international search by The Blues Foundation and its affiliated organizations for the blues band and blues solo/duo most deserving of taking their act to the international stage.

Competing artists can gain valuable exposure to record label representatives and blues industry professionals and festival promoters capable of real career advancement for a serious blues musician, organizers said.

As it has for the past several years, the Marietta competition will be a two-day event. Instead of bands competing Friday night, the weekend will begin with a pre-competition party on Friday from 8 to 11 p.m. The performers will be Danny Franchi at 8 p.m. while Souliz with Sugar and Spice will perform at 9:30 p.m.

On Saturday, the competition will be from noon to 6 p.m. with a dinner break from 6 to 8 p.m. The winning acts going to the IBC will perform at 8 p.m. followed by a performance at 9:30 p.m. by the Mike Wheeler Band.

Doors open one hour before show time.

For those wishing to attend the blues competition, tickets are $20 for BJFMS members and $25 for non-members for the Friday night show, $20 for members and $25 for non-members for the Saturday afternoon competition and $20 for members and $25 for non-members for the Saturday night performances. Weekend passes are $55 for members and $70 for non-members.

For ticket information, call Helen at 304-615-7997 or Peggy at 740-376-0222.

The blues competition is a precursor to the 27th annual River City Blues Festival in March at the Lafayette Hotel.

This year’s festival will include performances by a variety of regional and national blues performers.

The schedule of performers on Saturday will include:

* 1 p.m.: 5 $ Red (duo), Huntington, W.Va.

* 1:30 p.m.: The Brady Young Band (band), Parkersburg, W.Va.

* 2 p.m.: Dock Adams and Blues Hammer (band), Columbus.

* 2:30 p.m.: Dan Holt (solo), Cleveland.

* 3 p.m.: Lil’ Red and The Rooster (band), France/Ohio.

* 3:30 p.m.: Paul the Resonator with Vince “Fireball” Farabaugh (duo), Shepherdstown, W.Va.

* 4 p.m.: Roadhouse Redeemed (band), Columbus.

* 4:30 p.m.: Atom Lax (solo), Dover.

* 5 p.m.: John Henry and the Rainmakers (band), Columbus.