Saturday, Hyde Park in Stafford Springs was the site of the third Stafford Springs Blues Festival. This non-profit event was created to raise funds to build a permanent amphitheater in the beautiful, historic park. I left some of the photos with the background greenery.
The day started at 1 pm and went to about 7:30. Among the acts was 2013 Blues Music Award Nominee, Paul Gabriel and 2014 BMA Nominee, Sugar Ray Norcia. At 2 pm, a Festival highlight is the Northeast Blues Harmonica Showcase. On harps are Nominee Sugar Ray Norcia, The Kosher Kid and Mr. Nick. Backing the harmonicas will be the Eric Ducoff Band.
Other acts include Josh Scussel, Lydia Warren Bad News Barnes & The Brethren of the Blues Band, and Gracie Curran and her High Falutin Band winners of the Best Blues Band Award at the prestigious Boston Music Awards 2015.
In-between acts Ramblin’ Dan Stevens kept the music flowing with his unique style blues.
Josh Scussel & Electric Storm
Across the way some BBQ was getting ready for a local restaurant.
Paul Gabriel Trio was up next.
Paul with some tasteful licks.
There were some other things to see. I called this performer the Fire Dancer.
For me as a harmonica fan, I was looking forward to the Northeast Blues Harmonica Showcase.
They were backed by the Eric Ducoff Band.
And guest drummer Neil Gouvin.
Sugar Ray had a good time but it was over too soon.
The Connecticut Blues Society had a tent set up.
Lydia Warren Band continued to keep the audience moving. Even the youngsters felt the blues.
Even in the heat of the afternoon, the bands played hard and the fans partied hard.
Lydia was a crowd favorite as were the rest of the acts.
There was no lacking for music even during set changes. Dan Stevens was keeping the beat on the side stage.
The Fire Dancer was also there.
Bad News Barnes & The Brethren of the Blues Band hit you hard. As I said kinda loud, kinda brash, and over the top entertaining. Joined by an host of musicians the blues was there. Of course, I don’t think anyone forgot his song relative to men, “Hungry and Horny.”
I guess you could call it social commentary. Even more so when he brought up food additives and big business. Who says you can’t have fun and talk meaningfully.
One thing about Bad News, you will not forget him.
Worcester DJ Marty Ayotte was in the crowd.
Closing the fest was Gracie Curran and her High Falutin Band.
And the High Falutin Band
Gracie put a lot of energy into the show.
The fun in town didn’t stop with the Festival. Local clubs and the Palace had more entertainment to take you to the next day.