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Koko Taylor Receives Grammy Award Nomination for OLD SCHOOL
12/6/2007
Queen Of The Blues Koko Taylor has received a Grammy Award nomination for Best Traditional Blues Album for her 2007 release, Old School.

Koko Taylor Receives Grammy Award Nomination for OLD SCHOOL

QUEEN OF THE BLUES KOKO TAYLOR RECEIVES GRAMMY AWARD NOMINATION FOR 2007 RELEASE, OLD SCHOOL

CATEGORY 66 -- Best Traditional Blues Album
Koko Taylor – OLD SCHOOL


Queen Of The Blues Koko Taylor has received a Grammy Award nomination for Best Traditional Blues Album for her 2007 release, Old School. The announcement was made earlier today by The Recording Academy, whose membership includes recording artists, producers, engineers, designers, liner note writers and others involved in the creative aspects of the recording industry. 2008 marks the 50th anniversary of the Grammy Awards. The winners will be announced on February 10 in Los Angeles.

Known worldwide as The Queen Of The Blues, Koko Taylor was born and raised on a sharecropper's farm just outside of Memphis and began singing in church as a child. At 18, Taylor moved to Chicago. While working as a domestic on Chicago's ritzy North Shore by day, she began to sit in with the various blues bands across the city's South Side at night. The great producer/songwriter Willie Dixon heard Koko singing with Howlin' Wolf's band one night and quickly secured a contract with Chess Records for her, where she scored a million-selling hit with Wang Dang Doodle.

Over the course of her nine Alligator albums, Taylor has won every award the blues world has to offer, including eight Grammy Award nominations. She won a Grammy Award in 1984 for her participation in the compilation album Blues Explosion. Taylor has performed for Presidents George H.W. Bush and Bill Clinton, and appeared on television and in movies countless times.

On Old School, Taylor returns to the sounds of the 1950s electric blues she heard when first arriving in Chicago on a Greyhound bus from Memphis. With five original compositions (more than she has written on any previous recording) and singular reinterpretations of songs she carefully chose, Old School has been hailed as the best album of her entire career.

Old School is destined to be remembered as one of the top blues albums of 2007, and one of the best projects in her illustrious discography.”
--Billboard

“No other living vocalist, male or female, tackles Chicago blues with as much toughness as Koko Taylor. The fierceness of her delivery is matched by the stark imagery of the songs.”
--San Francisco Chronicle

Old School tears into its blues with a vengeance. Ms. Taylor sounds like she still knows exactly what she wants.”
--The New York Times

“Taylor is singing as well as she has at any time in the last couple of decades. The Queen of the Blues is back atop her throne.”
 --The Chicago Sun-Times




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ALLIGATOR RECORDS PRESIDENT BRUCE IGLAUER TO RECEIVE KEEPING THE BLUES ALIVE AWARD
11/7/2007
Alligator Records president Bruce Iglauer will receive the coveted 2008 Keeping The Blues Alive award for Producer from The Blues Foundation in a ceremony to be held on February 2 in Memphis, TN.

ALLIGATOR RECORDS PRESIDENT BRUCE IGLAUER TO RECEIVE KEEPING THE BLUES ALIVE AWARD

ALLIGATOR RECORDS PRESIDENT BRUCE IGLAUER TO RECEIVE KEEPING THE BLUES ALIVE AWARD FROM THE BLUES FOUNDATION!


Alligator Records president Bruce Iglauer will receive the coveted 2008 Keeping The Blues Alive award for Producer from The Blues Foundation in a ceremony to be held on February 2 in Memphis, TN. The Keeping the Blues Alive awards recognize the significant contributions to blues music made by the people behind the scenes. Each is selected on the basis of merit by a select panel of blues professionals.

In a statement released today, The Blues Foundation said, "From his first effort producing Hound Dog Taylor and the HouseRockers to his production of Koko Taylor's 2007 CD Old School, Bruce has always brought a professional's honest dedication and a fan's passionate enthusiasm into the studio. The hundreds of recordings he has worked on have become essential to the canon of modern blues. Not only has Bruce accurately captured the signature sound of blues elders like Koko Taylor, Albert Collins, Lonnie Brooks, Carey Bell, James Cotton, Son Seals, and Katie Webster, Bruce has been instrumental in producing the unique sounds of new talent like Michael Burks, Lil' Ed & The Blues Imperials, Little Charlie & The Nightcats, Kenny Neal, Saffire--The Uppity Blues Women, and Shemekia Copeland. Whether acoustic, back porch, swingin' jump, or fiery blues rock, Bruce Iglauer is always committed to bringing out the real blues."

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THE HOLMES BROTHERS FINALISTS IN THE HENNESSY PURE MUSIC REVUE CONTEST
11/6/2007
Gospel/soul/blues masters The Holmes Brothers have made the final round of the Hennessy Pure Music Revue contest.

THE HOLMES BROTHERS FINALISTS IN THE HENNESSY PURE MUSIC REVUE CONTEST

THE HOLMES BROTHERS FINALISTS IN
THE HENNESSY PURE MUSIC REVUE CONTEST

Gospel/soul/blues masters The Holmes Brothers have made the final round of the Hennessy Pure Music Revue contest, which means their song, Gasoline Drawers from their latest CD, State Of Grace (released January 2007), was the most-voted-for track during one of the past 11 months of the contest. They are now qualified to win the Best Indie Song of the Year. Voted on by fans, the overall winner will be featured in Rolling Stone magazine with the chance to record a live session in New York City.

Fans cast their vote at the following website:
http://www.rollingstoneextras.com/hennessy/voting.php .


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KOKO TAYLOR AND ERIC LINDELL FINALISTS FOR INDEPENDENT MUSIC AWARDS
11/6/2007
Both Koko Taylor and Eric Lindell have been named finalists in the album category for the 7th Annual Independent Music Awards, as presented by The Music Resource Group.

KOKO TAYLOR AND ERIC LINDELL FINALISTS FOR INDEPENDENT MUSIC AWARDS

KOKO TAYLOR AND ERIC LINDELL FINALISTS FOR
INDEPENDENT MUSIC AWARDS


Both Koko Taylor and Eric Lindell have been named finalists in the album category for the 7th Annual Independent Music Awards, as presented by The Music Resource Group.

Taylor is recognized for her CD Old School (released April 2007) and Lindell for Change In The Weather (released March 2006). The Independent Music Awards is an international program that helps independent artists and releases overcome mainstream obstacles and reach wider audiences. The program provides year-long promotion, marketing and distribution opportunities that place IMA winners and finalists in front of millions of music fans and industry decision makers around the world.

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JJ GREY AND MOFRO APPEAR ON WORLD CAFÉ ON NOVEMBER 14 / PLAN NEWS YEAR'S EVE EVENT IN JACKSONVILLE
11/6/2007
JJ Grey & MOFRO will appear on National Public Radio's World Café beginning November 14, 2007. Hosted by David Dye, the show can be heard on nearly 200 stations nationwide.

JJ GREY AND MOFRO APPEAR ON WORLD CAFÉ ON NOVEMBER 14 / PLAN NEWS YEAR'S EVE EVENT IN JACKSONVILLE

JJ GREY AND MOFRO APPEAR ON WORLD CAFÉ ON NOVEMBER 14
PLAN NEWS YEAR'S EVE EVENT IN JACKSONVILLE


JJ Grey & MOFRO will appear on National Public Radio's World Café beginning November 14, 2007. Hosted by David Dye, the show can be heard on nearly 200 stations nationwide. The band's latest CD, Country Ghetto (released in April 2007) is still receiving massive amounts of critical praise, radio play, and fan support around the world.

In other JJ Grey & MOFRO news, the band has announced plans for a four-night New Year's Eve event in their hometown of Jacksonville, FL. They will play four shows starting on December 28 at Freebird Live, culminating on New Year's Eve.

And if the band didn't have enough reasons to celebrate, Alligator Records has just reissued the group's first two CDs, Blackwater and Lochloosa. Both have been out of print and unavailable for some time.

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LEE ROCKER SIGNS WITH THE BILLIONS CORPORATION
11/6/2007
Bassist/vocalist/songwriter (and Stray Cat) Lee Rocker has signed with the Billions Corporation for his live performance bookings.

LEE ROCKER SIGNS WITH THE BILLIONS CORPORATION

LEE ROCKER SIGNS WITH THE
BILLIONS CORPORATION


Bassist/vocalist/songwriter (and Stray Cat) Lee Rocker has signed with the Billions Corporation for his live performance bookings. The artist-centric agency represents over 120 bands of all genres, including Neko Case, The New Pornographers, Th' Legendary Shack Shakers, Jim Lauderdale and many others.

Rocker's current CD, Black Cat Bone (released in August 2007), as well as his foot stomping live performances, have received overwhelmingly positive response from fans and critics all across the country.

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SIX ALLIGATOR ALBUMS NOMINATED FOR INCLUSION IN GRAMMY AWARD BALLOTING
10/24/2007
Each of the six CDs released on Alligator Records in 2007 has been chosen to be included on the first ballot for the 2008 Grammy Awards.

SIX ALLIGATOR ALBUMS NOMINATED FOR INCLUSION IN GRAMMY AWARD BALLOTING

 

SIX ALLIGATOR ALBUMS NOMINATED FOR INCLUSION
IN FIRST ROUND OF GRAMMY AWARD BALLOTING

EVERY ALLIGATOR 2007 NEW RELEASE MAKES THE LIST

 

 

Each of the six CDs released on Alligator Records in 2007 has been chosen to be included on the first ballot for the 2008 Grammy Awards. 2008 will be the 50th annual Grammy Awards given by The Recording Academy, whose membership include recording artists, producers, engineers, designers, liner note writers and others involved in the creative aspects of the recording industry.

 

Four Alligator artists: Koko Taylor (a previous Grammy winner), Coco Montoya, Tinsley Ellis, and JJ Grey & MOFRO appear in Blues categories. Two, Lee Rocker and The Holmes Brothers, appear in the Folk/Americana category. The top five vote getters in each category will be announced on December 6. The final round of voting will follow, with the top vote getter receiving the coveted award.

 

The Alligator artists and categories are as follows:

 

FIELD 13 – BLUES

Category 66 – Best Traditional Blues Album

Koko Taylor – OLD SCHOOL

 

 

FIELD 13 – BLUES

Category 67 – Best Contemporary Blues Album

 

Tinsley Ellis – MOMENT OF TRUTH

JJ Grey & MOFRO – COUNTRY GHETTO

Coco Montoya – DIRTY DEAL

 

 

FIELD 14 – FOLK

Category 69 – Best Contemporary Folk/Americana Album

The Holmes Brothers – STATE OF GRACE

Lee Rocker – BLACK CAT BONE

 

 

 

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ALLIGATOR RECORDS SIGNS EDDY “THE CHIEF” CLEARWATER!
10/23/2007
Alligator Records is pleased to announce the signing of legendary Chicago blues guitarist and songwriter Eddy “The Chief” Clearwater.

ALLIGATOR RECORDS SIGNS EDDY “THE CHIEF” CLEARWATER!

ALLIGATOR RECORDS SIGNS EDDY “THE CHIEF” CLEARWATER!

NEW CD EXPECTED IN SPRING 2008

 

“Chicago’s premiere blues showman.”

--The Chicago Tribune

 

 

Alligator Records is pleased to announce the signing of legendary Chicago blues guitarist and songwriter Eddy “The Chief” Clearwater. Clearwater, winner of the Blues Foundation’s Blues Music Award for “Contemporary Blues – Male Artist Of The Year” in 2001, is known worldwide as a masterful guitarist and vocalist as well as a charismatic and joyful live performer. Alligator will release Clearwater’s as yet untitled label debut in Spring 2008. Ronnie Baker Brooks, son of Chicago blues legend Lonnie Brooks, produced the CD, and added some of his own guitar work to the mix.

 

According to Alligator president Bruce Iglauer, Eddy’s addition to the Alligator line-up is a perfect fit. “It's a great honor to have an artist with Eddy's legacy and talent join the Alligator family. This is a special album; the combination of Eddy's soulful West Side guitar playing and Ronnie Baker Brooks' contemporary production and his tough, young band makes for some real fireworks. Plus, Ronnie's guitar playing really inspired Eddy to some of his very best guitar work on record ever.

 

Born Edward Harrington in Macon, MS on January 10, 1935, Eddy grew up listening to blues and country & western. By the time he was 13, he was playing guitar with a variety of gospel groups, including the legendary Five Blind Boys Of Alabama. By the time he came to Chicago’s West Side at age 15, he was still playing gospel, but soon fell under the spell of the blues, hearing greats like Freddie King, Magic Sam, Otis Rush and others. Magic Sam became a close friend of Eddy’s, and in 1953 Eddy made his move into the blues. Originally under the name of Guitar Eddy, he began working the city’s South and West Side bars. After hearing Chuck Berry in 1955, Eddy immediately adopted the rock ‘n’ roll sound into his blues playing.

 

With his personalized mix of West Side blues and Chuck Berry-style rock, Eddy was becoming more in-demand by the late 1950s. Nicknamed Eddy Clearwater (a word play on Muddy Waters) by drummer Jump Jackson, the southpaw guitarist quickly became known as a great showman with the ability to play the hardest blues, the most energetic rock, and a bit of country as well. He recorded a few singles in the early 1960s and never had to look too hard for a gig, as he worked constantly in Chicago-area nightclubs.

 

It took over 20 years, but by the 1970s Clearwater’s star was finally rising. He toured Europe twice that decade, and appeared on England’s BBC television and made a record in France. His debut U.S. album, 1980’s The Chief (named for Eddy’s Indian heritage and his penchant for wearing a full Indian headdress on stage) was the first release on Chicago’s Rooster Blues label.  After two more albums for Rooster Blues, Clearwater followed with a steady stream of recordings for Blind Pig, Rounder and Cleartone.

 

With his new release, Clearwater has found a perfect home on Alligator Records, the world’s premiere blues label. Heavy touring (booked by Piedmont Talent) along with Alligator’s promotional muscle, will bring Clearwater’s music to more fans than ever before.

 

 

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LEE ROCKER APPEARS ON NATIONAL PUBLIC RADIO’S WEEKEND EDITION SATURDAY
9/24/2007
Bassist / vocalist / songwriter Lee Rocker joined host Scott Simon on Saturday, September 22 on National Public Radio’s Weekend Edition Saturday.

LEE ROCKER on Cover of Rockabilly Magazine. Interview on Rockabilly.TV
8/24/2007
Lee Rocker is the cover story of the new issue of Rockabilly magazine. Watch Lee Rocker talk about his new CD, Black Cat Bone, and other fascinating topics on Rockabilly.tv.

ALLIGATOR RECORDS SIGNS BLUES AND SOUL VOCALIST JANIVA MAGNESS!
8/20/2007
Alligator Records is proud and pleased to announce the signing of blues, soul and R&B vocalist Janiva Magness.

ALLIGATOR RECORDS SIGNS BLUES AND SOUL VOCALIST JANIVA MAGNESS!

ALLIGATOR RECORDS SIGNS BLUES AND SOUL VOCALIST JANIVA MAGNESS!

ALLIGATOR RECORDS SIGNS BLUES AND SOUL VOCALIST JANIVA MAGNESS!

NEW CD SET FOR 2008

 

“When saucy blues singer Janiva Magness delivers a song, you’re convinced. She blurs the lines between blues and soul, singing with elegance and authority.”

--Los Angeles Times

 

Alligator Records is proud and pleased to announce the signing of blues, soul and R&B vocalist Janiva Magness. A 30-year veteran of the music scene, Magness has a soulful, husky voice and absolute command over her material. Winner of the 2006 and 2007 Blues Music Awards for Best Contemporary Female Artist Of The Year, Magness’ steady ascension to the top of the blues world will undoubtedly continue its upward trajectory. Magness has seven solo recordings to her credit and has made countless guest appearances on CDs from Kid Ramos, RL Burnside, Doug MacLeod, Jeff Turmes and others. Her presence on stage is legendary, as she performs 200 nights a year at clubs, festivals, and concert halls all over the world. A survivor of an impossibly rough childhood, Magness’ life experience informs her music in a way that is both brutally honest, emotionally moving and, above all, spiritually healing.

 

According to Alligator president Bruce Iglauer, signing Magness was a natural move for the label. “I've been watching Janiva over the last few years and seeing her mature into a major artist. Her deep, subtle understanding of blues and R&B music is obvious in every note she sings. Plus, her live performances simply captivate the audience. She's going to be a wonderful addition to the Alligator roster, and prove to be one of today’s and tomorrow’s crucial blues voices.

 

And Magness is equally thrilled. “I am so very grateful for all the gifts in my life. One of those gifts is joining the Alligator family. I’m very excited about this new chapter in my life. This is a huge step up for my career.”

 

Born in Detroit, Magness was inspired by the blues and country she heard on her father’s record collection and by the vibrant music of the city’s classic Motown sound. By her teenage years, though, her life was in chaos. She lost both parents to suicide by the time she was 16. She lived on the streets, was in 12 foster homes in two years, became a teenage mother who gave her baby up for adoption, bounced from city to city, and felt hopeless and desperate.

 

One winter’s night, Magness hitchhiked across Minneapolis to attend an Otis Rush concert, and for the first time saw her future. “It opened up some other place in me, like letting oxygen into a sealed crypt for the first time.” She began going to as many blues shows as possible, soaking up the sounds of her favorite artists, including Johnny Copeland and Albert Collins. She listened to James Brown, Aretha Franklin, Etta James, and all the other R&B greats.

 

It was music, particularly the blues, that sparked the young woman. Several years later, while working as an intern at a recording studio, she was approached to sing some supporting vocals on a track. Finding her voice, she soon began working regularly as a background singer. By the early 1980s, Magness made her way to Phoenix and befriended Bob Tate, the musical director for the great Sam Cooke. With Tate’s mentoring, she formed her first band, Janiva Magness and the Mojomatics, and within the year was named the city’s Best Blues Band by the influential Phoenix New Times. She moved to Los Angeles in 1986 and slowly began finding work. She married musician and songwriter Jeff Turmes with whom she recorded her first studio album, It Takes One To Know One, in 1997. After three more independent releases, Janiva signed with Northern Blues, and recorded Bury Him At The Crossroads in 2004 and Do I Move You? in 2006. Both CDs were co-produced by Magness along with Canadian roots star Colin Linden, and both garnered Magness a massive amount of critical and popular attention. Magness and Linden won the prestigious Canadian Maple Blues Award for Producers Of The Year for Bury Him At The Crossroads in 2004. Do I Move You? was the #1 Blues CD Of The Year in 2006 on Living Blues magazine’s radio chart.

 

In addition to her musical accomplishments, Magness is active in the Blues In Schools programs as well as being a National Spokesperson for Casey Family Programs promoting National Foster Care Month year round, a position she is honored to hold. She has reconnected with her daughter, and is now the proud grandmother of a six-year-old boy. “I have a life today I never could have imagined,” says Magness. “The tragedies of my life no longer define me.”

 

What defines Janiva Magness is the strength, power and passion of her deeply soulful, emotionally moving music, sung with truth and soul-shaking talent. With plans to return to the recording studio shortly, Magness is busy mapping out her upcoming Alligator debut while simultaneously barnstorming across the country. With the stars seemingly all lined up for her, Janiva Magness will delight her current fans and earn legions of new admirers all around the globe.

 

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THREE ALLIGATOR ARTISTS WIN FOUR LIVING BLUES AWARDS!
8/14/2007
Koko Taylor, Marcia Ball, and Lil’ Ed Williams all received top honors from Living Blues magazine in their just-published Readers’ and Critics’ Polls.

THREE ALLIGATOR ARTISTS WIN FOUR LIVING BLUES AWARDS!

THREE ALLIGATOR ARTISTS WIN FOUR LIVING BLUES AWARDS!

 

Koko Taylor, Marcia Ball, and Lil’ Ed Williams all received top honors from Living Blues magazine in their just-published Readers’ and Critics’ Polls. Williams, leader of the houserocking Lil’ Ed & The Blues Imperials, was named Blues Artist of the Year (Male) in both the Readers’ and the Critics’ Poll. Taylor, world-renowned as Queen of the Blues, was named Blues Artist of the Year (Female). Texas pianist/vocalist Marcia Ball was named Most Outstanding Musician in the Readers’ Poll. 
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