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The Rhode Island Blues Festival!

The Rhode Island Blues Festival takes place Saturday, August 18 and Sunday, August 19 at Mulligan’s Island in Cranston. The Sunday line-up will consist of Stovall Brown Band at noon, Lois Greco Band at 2pm, Selwyn Birchwood at 4pm and the Dirty Dozen Brass Band at 6pm.

The Dirty Dozen Brass Band is a New Orleans supergroup with a 40-year history. The Dirty Dozen have blended traditional brass band music with a mix of genres, including bebop jazz, funk, R&B and soul. This unique sound, described by the band as a “musical gumbo,” has allowed them to tour five continents and more than 30 countries, record 12 studio albums, and collaborate with a range of artists from Modest Mouse to Widespread Panic to Norah Jones.

Roger Lewis, baritone sax player for the Dirty Dozen and one of the founding members – a musical legend now in his 70s – says, “I love playing Rhode Island, one of my favorite places to play on the planet.” He remembers playing the Newport Jazz Festival a few years back and that “the fans in Rhode Island are very generous and into the music, great listeners.”

At 4pm on Sunday, Selwyn Birchwood brings a contemporary blues style from his international tour to the RI stage. “You have to hear him to believe it,” says Friedman.

Birchwood’s first album received the Blues Music Award and Living Blues Critics’ Award for Best Debut Album Of 2014, and he won the 2015 Blues Blast Rising Star Award.
At 2pm, the Lois Greco Band takes the stage. Lois won “Most Outstanding Female Singer” in the Blues Audience Readers Poll, and The Lois Greco Band was voted Best Blues/R&B Act in the 2014 WMRC Music Awards.

Sunday’s opener, the Stovall Brown Band, is fronted by Chris Stovall Brown, who regularly plays international shows as the drummer for Watermelon Slim and regional shows with J.Geils, Jeff Pitchell, the Colbys, James Montgomery, Sweet Melissa, Madeleine Hall and Shirley Lewis.

The event is supported by a number of food vendors and food trucks – they focus on BBQ, but will present a wide variety of options from vegan to vegetarian. Blues and music relate gift and t-shirt will be there, along with alcohol, including beer offerings from sponsor Revival Brewing, the multi-award-winning brewery in Cranston, RI.

Participants will also have access to batting cages, mini-golf and other lawn games during the fest, and are invited to stake out their own patch of grass or bring their own chairs to enjoy the festival.

The Saturday line-up includes Marcia Ball at 6pm, Jack Broadbent at 4pm, Heather Gillis Band at 2pmand Neal & the Vipers at noon.

For more on the event, go to www.ribluesfest.com.

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