Saturday, Paul Oscher made a stop at Black-eyed Sally’s. First let me talk about CTFastrak, my present transportation to Hartford. As I pulled into the Cedar Street Station (free) parking lot, my classic radio station had a CTFastrak ad. Must have been an omen. The ride is quick and friendly. In fact as I was sitting in front of Sally’s the bus made the loop to return to New Britain and the driver recognized my hat and gave me a wave. So far, it has been fun, quick and it beats parking in downtown Hartford.
On this stop Oscher was playing as a trio setting. The show had him on harmonica, bass harmonica, guitar and piano and the blues fans loved it.
He may be best known for his harmonica work but he goes beyond that as an award-winning blues singer, songwriter, recording artist, and multi-instrumentalist, (harmonica, guitar, piano, melodica, and bass harp). He put all his talents on display at Sally’s. And the audience loved it.
Paul on a few other instruments.
He told stories of some of the iconic blues legends and also how he started playing the blues at the age of twelve when his uncle gave him a marine band harmonica and was taught the rudiments of blues harmonica by Jimmy Johnson, a southern medicine show harp player.
Oscher first gained fame and recognition as Muddy Waters’ harmonica player, 1967-1972. He sat in the chair occupied by such luminaries as Little Walter, Junior Wells, James Cotton, and Big Walter Horton. Paul Oscher was the first white musician in the world to become a full-time member of a black blues band of this stature.
The band had fun during the night.
Paul with a little showtime.
And his style of bass guitar!
Fans had plenty of opportunity to talk with Paul. And this group of knowledgeable musicians posed for a picture.
Mike Law, Andrew Grzybowski, Paul Oscher, John Bailey, and Ryan Hartt
Paul and I served on the Board of the Blues Foundation a time back. He took the time to let the crowd know that as he mentioned a few friends in the audience. All told, the night was one people will talk about. A talented and engaging performer.