The highlight of the year for the Blues Foundation is the International Blues Challenge, which took place from Jan. 31st to Feb 4, 2017. Historically famous Beale Street was booming, with over 250 Blues Acts, from all over the world. In addition to the competition, Memphis featured music in the clubs (day and night), seminars, interviews, award ceremonies, and workshops for the professional musicians and the interested fans. There are also famous barbecue joints and tourist attractions (Sun Studios, Stax studios, Rock n Soul Museum, Gibson Guitar Factory, Blues Foundation Hall of Fame, Sports, Elvis’s Graceland and many other places of interest).
CTBS has always been highly respected for the talent that has represented our Blues Society. This year CTBS was proud to send the following Challenge Winners to compete in the IBC – THE DANNY DRAHER BAND (Band Winner), BALKUN BROTHERS (Solo Duo Winner) and JAKE KULAK AND THE LOW DOWN (made their third appearance in the Youth Showcase). The Blues Society Self Produced CD Contest was won by EasyBaby’s Going Upstairs and it was submitted to Memphis.
The Final Winners of the IBC, at the Orpheum Theater were as follows: BAND - DAWN TAYLOR WATSON (First place from Montreal Blues Society), THE SOULIZ BAND (Second place from the Suncoast Blues Society) and RAE GORDEN AND THE BACKSTREET DRIVERS (Third place from the Cascade Blues Association). SOLO / DUO – AL HILL (First place from the Nashville Blues Society) and BRODY BUSTER’S ONE MAN BAND(Second place from Kansas City Blues Society). BEST INSTRUMENTALISTS – BEN RACINE (Guitar, Band), AL HILL (Guitar, Solo Duo) and BRODY BUSTER (Harmonica), and Best Self Produced CD was High Temperature by JW Jones.
The mission of the IBC is to promote excitement for your local Blues Bands and the venues they perform in. [ ]