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Blues History of Joliet and Southern Chicago, Illinois
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ANNIVERSARY EDITION SATURDAY MARCH 23, 2013 PRINTED IN U.S.A.
JOLIET HERITAGE BLUES JAM/WEEKLY NEWS
The VERACIOUS SCUTTLEBUTT & POPPYCOCK of the PREVIOUS WEEKS EVENTS
JOLIET HERITAGE BLUES JAM (JHBJ)/SUNDAY SOCIAL EVERY SUNDAY 6:00-10:00 PM
KEGLERS @ CREST HILL LANES 905 THEODORE ST. CREST HILL, IL 60403 815-722-8910
THE STORY BEHIND THE NAME
On this our Second Anniversary Bash (Sunday March 24, 2013) wed like to share the reason for choosing the name: JOLIET HERITAGE BLUES JAM. Many dont know how rich Joliets Blues history actually is.
you know that Buddy
Guy for about three years (1959-61) managed Joe Howards
Club 99? Club 99 was located on Joliets Southside at 111 Patterson
Road. Club 99 featured Blues and R&B thru the 1970s. Practically
every Chicago Blues luminary you can think of appeared at Joe Howards.
Shaky Horton, Elmore
King (as late as the early 70s, I remember seeing his bus pulled
up there). Yes and the King of the Blues himself, BB
King and many more! The
T-Bird Huck Band was fortunate to make it to that hallowed ground
(the very same Club 99 stage the aforementioned performed on) a few times
in the mid 70s. It was a true honor and Blues Blessing!
The late great master/father of Hammond B-3 Jazz Organ, Jimmy Smith played the Stardust (an intimate setting) often.
The Coliseum (now a big garage in a junkyard) hosted many of the same acts as did Club 99.
I remember in 1969 (as a teenager before the legal age) sneaking into Boss City on S. Chicago St. and Winters Lounge (now Terrace Inn Lounge). I experienced my first jam session at Boss City. It was more of a jazz set, but wow were those cats jammin!
Thats where I met tenor saxophonist Calvin Carson (whom way back in the day did shows with Duke Ellington, Count Basie, BB King, Albert King and more).
Many called us the original Joliet/Blues Brothers and many of my fondest musical memories were along side Michael Ciancanelli (my partner in the Blues for nearly 35 years: 1970-2006).
Michael and I (both under-aged) would sneak into Winters Lounge to hear Calvin on tenor, Willard Saunders/Hammond B-3 and Eddie Duncan (from the hill) on drums.
Week after week we would see that trio blow the roof off the joint! WOW what an inspiration. We also caught international Jazz giants Gene Jug Ammons/tenor sax and guitarist George Freeman there. Oh yeah, Bluesman/R&B artist Bobby Rush too! Winters closed a few years later (then re-opened as Terrace Inn).
1984 I caught up with Calvin (Carson) again by chance; he was gigging
in (of all places) a bowling alley! By the next week I had him in my band
until his untimely death in 1990. I was blessed to have been mentored
by and performed memorable shows with him including Stateville Penitentiary,
Sheridan Correctional Facility and the Joliet Correctional Center twice
(where the opening scene of the Blues Brothers movie was filmed)
plus festivals & clubs. Anyways
back to the Joliet Heritage Blues
I remember nights sittin there and eatin neck bones, wings, catfish, greens and more while listening to Little Milton Campbell, Jo Jo Murray and other Blues artists would appear from time to time. The Turntable Lounge on Collins St. owned by Howard Boykin was another venue where you could occasionally catch live music. As late as about 1990.
remember seeing legendary B-3 Jazz organist Charles Earland there.
Another Joliet venue that would feature live Blues (infrequently) was
Boles Tavern where we seen BB
King (one night/two shows) in 1975. Way back-in-the-day before it
was Boles the building originally housed new car dealer Southtown motors;
Plymouth/Chrysler. What a treat it was to see BB there in an intimate
club setting! At the end of the show/night BB remained on stage and obliged
whoever wanted his autograph to meet him on stage
WOW! Not long after
that BBs popularity grew with the masses and he only played concerts/large
venues. Also worth mentioning are the Sahara Lounge owned by Don
Hudson, the Hillside, the Harlem, and the Pheasant Club
(Lockport Twp), the Big Ten and the 2100 Blues Club.
One night on our way to play a house party (in the rich part of town) when we pulled up next to Shorty in his big white Coupe de Ville (he could barely see over the steering wheel). We got em to come do the gig with us and man he brought the house down!!! What a night, just one of many great memories.
Many times I or we were the only white boys in the house. Back then people had mutual respect and accepted one-another for who and what they were. Nobody in those clubs back then cared about the color of each others skin. We all knew we were brought there together by one common denominator the BLUES! I was in later years (1981 to 1992) fortunate to be a sales representative (for Miller Beer) to all of the aforementioned venues till they one by one closed down.
Now the only sole/soul survivor of those magical/musical glory days is Lionels Terrace Inn, 630 Gardener St. Joliet, IL.
the most part these days the Terrace Inn features DJs spinning
dance & dustys (old R&B/Blues) but will occasionally feature live
music. We still frequently stop by to see Lionel and his fine staff.
Thank you T-Bird. . This is exactly the Blues History that these pages were made for.
Can you remember and write us some stories about your 1970's travels to Chicago's South Side Blues Clubs?
Dan " Lucky" Marolt
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