Article on the 2010 Sedalia Blues Challenge in Lynchburg, VA’s The News & Advance Newspaper!


07.11.10 The News & Advance – ‘Sedalia Blues Festival’s top performer says genre’s draw is its room for variation’
By: Dave Thompson
Published: July 11, 2010

Wailing harmonicas, thudding bass, melancholy guitar riffs and, of course, sunglasses.

The Sedalia Blues Society’s 13th annual Blues Festival brought a few hundred spectators to Big Island on Saturday.

Some danced or swayed to the tunes as eight bands competed for two spots at the 2011 International Blues Challenge in Memphis, in February.

Tom Hunter, of Minneapolis, who played the event’s second set with his partner Jon Gunvaldson, said for him the festival was a way to get back on the road after taking a break from touring while his kids were in school.

“I was talking with one of the organizers, and he said ‘Why don’t you come down and play this thing? It’ll be good for you.’”

Hunter said win or lose the competition, just throwing himself into the music was the best part.

“I love the blues, so it’s nice … to go to a place where you can just play the blues.”

The event was headlined by country blues singer Rory Block and William “Big Bill” Morganfield, son of blues legend Muddy Waters.

Dave Richardson, of Bedford County, said he’s been into blues music since he was a kid.

“I’m a big blues fan,” Richardson said. “My mom grew up in Memphis. I kind of got exposed to that stuff at an early age.”

He said Block was a big draw for him, citing her rendition of the gospel hymn “Ain’t No Grave” among his favorite songs.

“That’ll just grab you by the heart strings,” he said.

Though many of the songs Saturday were melancholy or downright mournful, with plenty of string-bending and wailing, Hunter, who sings and plays keyboard, said part of the draw of blues music is that there’s plenty of room for variation, lyrically and musically.

“It’s really just expressive as heck. You can play happy, funny. It just doesn’t matter. The blues covers a lot of things,” he said.

“It’s just a really broad umbrella.”

Judges announced the competition’s winners after the last set, before Morganfield took the stage.

First place among the full bands went to Richmond-based band “The Bush League.”

Hunter and Gunvaldson won the duo artists competition. Hunter also won the Ree Breeden Outstanding Performer award, said organizer Harry Turner, who sits on the Sedalia Center’s board.

Turner also noted that nearly 1,000 people showed up for Block and Morganfield’s performances.

“Everybody’s very excited. We had another very successful event,” he said.



Click Link To Watch Video Connected With This Article!!!



Posted in Uncategorized

On-line article on The Bush League playing the 2010 Sedalia Blues Festival and Blues Challenge!

Sedalia Blues Festival and Blues Talent Competition – 2010



The Sedalia Blues Festival returns July 10th with its sanctioned Blues Competition in the afternoon, followed by performances by headliners Big Bill Morganfield and Rory Block.

William Morganfield is the son of McKinley Morganfield (Muddy Waters) and has emerged in the past few years as one of the top young blues talents in America. Bill has played all over the world in the past 11 years, bringing pure joy to those who have had the pleasure of seeing his live performance.

Many men try to fill their father’s shoes when they join the family business. Few, however, must prove they are up to the task in front of an audience as large as the one that watched Big Bill Morganfield.

Morganfield didn’t take up the challenge until several years after his dad passed away in 1983. The blues world mourned the passing of Muddy. Muddy leaves not only a gaping hole on the blues scene but also a grief-stricken son who is contemplating how to handle the loss. Bill buys himself a guitar and retreats into a private world, intending to teach himself how to play and then pay homage to his famous father. Indeed, this was the beginning of Big Bill Morganfield as a Bluesman and the start of his blues journey. Click here to read more about the evolution of the great blues talent of Big Bill Morganfield.

Aurora “Rory” Block has staked her claim as one of America’s top acoustic blues women, an interpreter of the great Delta blues singers, a slide guitarist par excellence, and also a talented songwriter.

The Sedalia Blues Society will sponsor the 13th Annual Blues Talent Competition as part of the Sedalia Blues Festival.  Entries are no longer being accepted and the competing performers have been announced:


(Order of appearance will be determined on the day of the event.)

Definitely the hottest blues ticket in Virginia, this is a must on your summer calendar!  Beer, wine, and food available.  

Admission:  $15 in Advance, $20 at the gate, children under 12 free

Advance tickets are available through Friday, July 9, on this web site or by calling our office.  Event takes place rain or shine. No pets, no coolers!


13th Annual Blues Talent Competition


The 13th Annual Blues Talent Competition will kick off at 1pm. Winners will be named in both the Solo/Duo Category and the Bands Category, and both winners will receive cash prizes. Both winners will also go on to represent the Sedalia Blues Society at the International Blues Challenge in Memphis, Tennessee, in 2011.



Posted in Uncategorized