Gig: Theatre of Blues Festival – Shrewsbury – 04 Feb 2012

Posted on: Thursday, Dec 1, 2011

Theatre of Blues – Theatre Severn Shrewsbury

4th Feb 2012 12 until 12

Organisers are proud to announce Big Joe Louis & His Blues Kings as the headline at this new blues festival

BJL 3 France small with credit 

Big Joe Louis

Big Joe Louis was born in Jamaica, West Indies, and moved to the UK during the 1970s. The Blues Kings were formed in 1986 and have taken their special kind of real downhome Blues to venues the length and breadth of the UK and Ireland and with great success on the European and Scandinavian festival and concert scene. A groundbreaking tour of Norway and Russia (filmed for Russian TV) in October 1993 brought blues to the north of Russia for the first time, and a recent trip to Bulgaria was enthusiastically received. Big Joe Louis And His Blues Kings have recorded sessions for BBC Radios 1, 2 and 4 and have appeared on BBC TV, RTE TV and Sky TV. Big Joe has been a guest on radio/TV shows in France, Belgium, Ireland, The Netherlands, Spain, Italy, Norway, Denmark, Russia, Sweden, Bulgaria and the UK, and his records have had airplay throughout the UK, Europe, Scandinavia, Australia, Canada and the USA. 1998 sees Big Joe Louis travelling as far afield as Finland and Las Vegas.

Big Pete 02 

Big Pete Blues Band

33-year-old Dutch blues vocalist and harp master Pieter “Big Pete” van der Pluijm may not be a familiar name to American blues audiences, but he’s already well-established in the Netherlands, his native home base in North-West Europe. At 23, Pete was handpicked for a European memorial tour to honor the music and memory of legendary harmonica player and vocalist Lester Butler (the Red Devils and Thirteen), backed by several of Lester’s original band mates. The project was met with great success and critical acclaim, so more tours and a CD by the Lester Butler Tribute Band soon followed, securing Pete’s arrival on the scene as one of the premier next generation blues performers in the Benelux region.

Since then, Pete has gone on to form and record many other successful projects including his debut release “Bathroom Acoustics” by The Strikes, a couple of CDs by the rockin’ 50’s Chicago blues outfit The Backbones, and most recently, the more progressive and forward-thinking group M.O.C.T. (Men Of Considerable Taste). Pete’s growing reputation has also led to tours and performances backing many internationally acclaimed blues artists including Alex Schultz, Mitch Kashmar, Monster Mike Welch, Hook Herrera, Matt Schofield, and Ian Siegal.

Pete’s formal introduction to the U.S. market materialized in March 2010 with his appearance on The Mannish Boys’ 5th anniversary release “Shake For Me.” Pete closed out the album in style paying tribute to his hero Lester Butler on the storming New Orleans romp “Way Down South,” backed by Kid Ramos, Willie J. Campbell and Jimi Bott, along with special guest pianist Andy Kaulkin, who previously recorded with Lester Butler on his classic album “Thirteen.” Now, with his relationship firmly cemented in place with Delta Groove, Pete’s debut album for Delta Groove, ‘Choice Cuts’  will be released in October 2011.

Jon Amor 

Jon Amor Blues Group

UK vocalist and guitarist Jon Amor, formerly of award-winning British band The Hoax, has joined forces with long-time collaborators Dave Doherty, Chris Doherty and Si Small to form Jon Amor Blues Group. Drawing inspiration from the Blues greats of the past like Muddy Waters and Howlin’ Wolf, as well as more contemporary acts like Black Keys and Jon Spencer Blues Explosion, the group’s sound is powerful, raw and uncompromising.  Having spent the last ten years honing his skills as a song-writer and solo performer, Amor returns to his blues roots with JABG and the band is the perfect vehicle for the guitar-playing which brought him to prominence with The Hoax during the nineties. Brothers Dave Doherty (guitar) and Chris Doherty (bass), with Si Small (drums) have served in Amor’s band for the last 5 years, appearing on the 2009 album “Stories From The Crooked Room”, and bring a youthful exuberance as well as dynamic musicianship to Jon Amor Blues Group.
Jon Amor Blues Group have released 4 brand new tracks, available as free downloads from and already the energy and power of the band’s sound is causing a stir throughout the UK and Europe. The band will be touring extensively having just released a full album of original material.

Rhythm zoo at taurus 

Rhythm Zoo

Rhythm Zoo will hit you on every level. Driving rhythm, blistering guitar, sultry sax and the captivating vocals of Andrea (Andi) Jones.

Rhythm Zoo hold the music close to their hearts and are rapidly gaining a solid reputation within the UK blues music scene. The band formed three years ago and has already played at some of the UK’s major blues festivals, including the Great British R & B Festival in Colne, Nantwich Jazz and Blues, Worthenbury Blues and Roots Festival, Wallingford Blues Festival (supporting Connie Lush) Limetree, Orkney and Swanage. As Rhythm Zoo’s reputation continues to grow, 2011/12 sees the band booked for many of the UK Blues Clubs and festivals around the UK.

pic by Marcin Bogusz 

Dave Arcari

SLIDE guitarist & songwriter Dave Arcari’s alt.blues sounds owe as much to trash country, punk and rockabilly as they do pre-war Delta blues and have been showcased via six internationally-acclaimed solo CD releases. His latest album – Devil’s Left Hand – was released on Buzz Records on 1 November 2010.
In 2010 Arcari added two hugely successful shows at the legendary Glastonbury Festival to his impressive list of festival appearances which includes Peer Festival (Belgium), BluesAlive (Czech Republic & Poland shows), The Great British R&B Festival, and Augustibluus & ViruFolk (Estonia).
He has also played industry showcases at the North by North East (NxNE) music festival in Toronto, Canada and he was a finalist the UK Indy Music Awards reaching the top four in his category (best male solo artist).
With more than 100 UK dates a year plus regular shows in Finland, Estonia, France, Germany, Belgium, Poland and Canada, Arcari is one of the hardest gigging live artists on the circuit. A series of shows with folks including Steve Earle, Alabama 3, Seasick Steve and Jon Spencer along with his relentless UK and European tour schedule have established Arcari as a formidable international solo performer who is fast building a media reputation as a ‘hell-raising National guitar madman’.
Arcari’s growing reputation was endorsed in Spring 2007 when he was asked to put music to Robert Burns’ (Scotland’s national poet) poem Parcel of Rogues for a BBC Scotland special to mark 300 years of the Act of Union between Scotland and England. He also presented the programme, interviewing many high-profile political figures, musicians and historians along the way.



Northsyde started life in 2004 as Funkydory, an incendiary unit combining the fiery passion of Lorna Fothergill’s vocals and songwriting with the forceful grooves of rhythm section Hayden Doyle (drums) and Ian Mauricio (bass). Intertwined, the creative guitar playing of Jules Fothergill completes the lineup to create a band who, since their first gig, have generated a loyal following throughout the UK and Europe.
Playing everywhere from the London Ealing Festival to Holland’s Queensday festival in Eindhoven, their live performances have earned them rave reviews and a firm place in the festival circuit. With the release of their latest album, Mercy’s Medicine, the band look forward to continuing their success through 2011…


‘BabaJack is an outstanding blues, folk [and more] fusion band […] When they are on stage, everyone sits up and takes notice!’                          (BluesMatters Magazine)

Their sound is powerful, original and contemporary combining traditional blues slide, harmonica, winebox guitar and vocals with the African drums, stomp, bass and violin, all with great musicianship. And they groove! They are the upcoming blues/folk act fresh taking the summer festival stages by storm- the one you can’t afford to miss.

Blues Boy Dan

Arguably the best Christmas present Dan Owen – otherwise known as Blues Boy Dan – ever received was a second-hand guitar. It was left un-played for a year until Dan finally managed to get himself some lessons. It was at this point that his passion and talent for the blues was discovered at the early age of nine.
By starting as a duo with his sister, Dan was able to gain experience in pubs from the age of thirteen by playing guitar and bodhran while his sister sang. Dan purchased his first ‘Gibson acoustic guitar’ with the intention of establishing himself as a full time musician. His unique vocal sound wasn’t unleashed until a spontaneous open mic night on holiday in Cornwall.
Dan gained a fan base in his local area. His popular and well received performances were soon sought after by pubs around Shropshire and Birmingham; triggering the start of his professional career. From this, he has gained many bookings from clubs such as Jools Holland’s Jam House and well-known local festivals such as Farmer Phil’s

For more information visit

Photo credits

Jon Amor – Ken Anstead
Big Joe louis – Francois Defamie
Rhythm Zoo – Julie W
Dave Arcari – Marcin Bogusz

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