Blues Access Winter 2002
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Backstage Notes
Blues everywhere I go:

Back in 1991 I interviewed Johnny "Clyde" Copeland for the magazine. When I asked him what he foresaw for the future of the blues, he responded, "In 1992 everybody’s gonna have the blues." Looks like he was about nine years early on that prediction, but it sure has come to pass, hasn’t it?

The sheer horror of the events aside, there’s no question but that everybody is feeling the fallout from September 11, and that certainly extends to magazine publishers, record companies and musicians, both in and outside of the blues. A big economic shake-up has already started, and the string of dominoes is virtually countless. (The fact that a major CD distributor representing over 300 labels recently folded is a good indicator of the turmoil this industry is in.) About all any of us can do is to hang in there, do what we do best and try to cut other people some slack — and hope for the same in return.

Of course, what we do best is to steer people in the direction of great music. For the past 12 years we’ve been doing that on a quarterly basis. Now we’re at a crossroads. It’s our hope that in the not-too-distant future we will be able to do it with even more issues per year. No one can foresee the future (if I could I’d probably move to Las Vegas) and this all depends on locating an investor who can see the potential in a magazine that’s been able to produce quality work on a frayed shoestring for all these years. Of course, given the dire uncertainties that surround us, it could all come tumbling down on us and Ms. Nancy and I might end up sleeping in a cardboard box. But we have some good people in our corner and we’re optimistic about our chances of taking BLUES ACCESS to the next level. If not, you’ll have to bring your own box when you come to visit.

Getting some "Word": We mentioned this at the end of Lou Friedman’s review of the self-titled debut disc by The Word, but it took a bit longer than we expected to get it online. Thanks to our former office person and cohort John Schaefer, we now have streaming concert audio of The Word on our web site. Look for the link on our home page.

BLUES ACCESS is proud to bring you this live performance by a group that combines exciting new sounds in both blues and gospel. The Word melds the considerable talents of the youthful North Mississippi All Stars with the keyboard prowess of John Medeski (Medeski, Martin & Wood) and the flat-out amazing playing of "Sacred Steel" guitarist Robert Randolph. Check it out and you’ll "get happy" that you did.

Technical difficulties: What drugs were we on when we were coming up with the credits for the fall issue? Don’t even ask. I guess if we’re going to make mistakes it’s best to do them all at once and get them over with. To wit:

The uncredited photo of Bruce Iglauer [page 6] and the shots of Jody Williams credited to Jef Jaisun [pages 28 and 30] were actually taken by Chuck Winans.

A photo of Tutu Jones [page 16] was inadvertently attributed to Rita Weigand; it is the work of Boo Boo Récaborde.

The small photos of Hubert Sumlin [pages 42, 43, 44, 45, 46, 47] were mistakenly credited to Mark Hoffman; Jacob Cohen shot them.

• The correct web address for Michael Weintrob, who shot the Marcia Ball cover, should be

— CW


©2001 Blues Access, Boulder, Colorado, USA