May 11 – May 17 Birthdays. This week’s blues birthdays feature Butch Trucks, Steve Winwood, Taj Mahal and more!
Butch Trucks: May 11, 1947
Butch Trucks was one of the founding members of the renowned and influential The Allman Brothers Band. He, along with fellow drummer and bandmate Jaimoe, laid the rhythmic foundation for the band’s illustrious catalog, and he remained a constant member throughout the band’s 45 year history and its various iterations. Sadly, Butch passed away at his Florida home on January 24, 2017.
Steve Winwood: May 12, 1948
A multi-instrumentalist virtuoso with a career spanning over five decades, Steve Winwood has had a hand in the works of some of the most influential acts in modern music history, including Jimi Hendrix, George Harrison, David Gilmore and former Blind Faith band mate Eric Clapton. While he has often been a highly sought-after session musician, his solo career has also generated success and to this day he continues to make his mark in popular music.
Megan Lovell: May 12, 1989
Megan Lovell provides the backing vocals and sick lapsteel licks for the torchbearing roots Rock band Larkin Poe, which she formed with her sister Rebecca in 2010. Together, the duo has electrified the music festival circuit, including several appearances on Joe Bonamassa’s Keeping the Blues Alive at Sea cruise, and continue to create powerful bluegrass harmonies with their fifth studio album Self Made Man set to be released on June 12, 2020.
Ana Popovic – May 13, 1976
Ana Popovic has stated she’s been moving west her whole life: she fell in love with blues as a child in Belgrade, Serbia, studied music and began her career in the Netherlands, moved to Tennessee to collaborate with American musicians, and most recently relocated her family to California. Since her band Hush disbanded in 1998, Popovic’s solo career has garnered plenty of attention and accolades for her impressive shredding.
Jack Bruce: May 14, 1943
Regarded as one the best bassists in the history of rock & roll, this Scottish singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist is also a founding member and singer of the legendary band Cream. In addition to his time with the power trio, he has also collaborated with Blues Incorporated, the Graham Bond Organization, John Mayall & the Bluesbreakers, and Manfred Man. Continuing his solo career in 1969, he also worked with Mick Taylor, Frank Zappa, Gary Moore, Robin Trower, Rory Gallagher, Ringo Star, and John Medeski among others before his passing in 2014.
Taj Mahal: May 17, 1942
This blues singer and multi-instrumentalist was born in Harlem and raised in Springfield, Massachusetts. His very musically inclined parents had a shortwave radio that picked up music from around the world, thus instilling in Taj an interest in world music from an early age. He had a good singing voice, and after a brief time of piano lessons he began playing a guitar his stepfather had owned.After graduating college with a degree in agriculture in 1964, Taj moved to LA in to form a band called “The Rising Sons” which included guitarist Ry Cooder. Mahal was exposed to diverse musicians including Howlin’ Wolf, Otis Redding, Buddy Guy, and the Rolling Stones, and forged his own unique style of blues, blending elements of African music, calypso, jazz, country blues, and gospel.
That’s all for this week’s May 11 – May 17 birthdays!
Sol Canal for Keeping the Blues Alive
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