The Mississippi Valley Blues Society presents Hal Reed and Kevin Burt for its Blues in the Schools Artists in Residency Series for the week of February 25 to March 1, 2013. Hal and Kevin will conduct their "Generations of Blues" workshops at area schools and two Open to the Public performances:
• Moline Public Library, Gold Room - Tuesday, Feb. 26, 7 - 8:30 p.m. (3210 41st Street, Moline, IL)
• River Music Experience, Community Stage - Thursday Feb. 28, 7-9 p.m. (2nd and Main Streets in Davenport, IA)
Through storytelling, discussions, and musical demonstration, Hal and Kevin will trace blues music's history and culture from its African roots through today's era, showing how and where the blues originated and threaded its way through all cultures in our society. The goal is that students today continue to appreciate, understand and carry their fathers' and mothers' music into the next generation.
Blues harmonica player, guitarist, singer and educator Hal Reed was born in Mississippi just a few miles from the Delta, where he grew up influenced by his grandfather, a talented southern folk-blues artist who in addition to inspiring young Hal's love for the blues taught Hal the need to pass it on from generation to generation.
Besides being a bandleader in the Quad-Cities, Hal is also the owner of The Muddy Waters in Bettendorf, where he brings in blues artists every week. And for the past five years he has been a teacher at the River Music Experience's Winter Blues program. Hal has brought his "Generations of Blues" program to area schools three times before, to great acclaim.
For over 20 years, Kevin "B.F." Burt has been electritying audiences throughout the nation, dispelling the myth that true blues has no roots in Iowa. His soul-inspired presentation is unique, which consistently gets him compared to a range of artists like Bill Withers and Aaron Neville, with the ability to build an audience rapport that has been compared to B.B. King. Kevin is a self-taught musician (vocals, harmonica and guitar) who has also had some stage acting experience. In the off-Broadway play, Klub Ka, the Blues Legend, Kevin played Papa Gee and arranged all of the blues music. The Play, which originally ran in Iowa City and then in Washington D.C., also had a two-week run at LaMama's Experimental Theater in New York City and was sold out each night. Kevin also had roles in several other plays at the University of Iowa - for example, playing Whining Boy in the acclaimed August Wilson play The Piano Lesson.