Tag Archives: The Blues Foundation

International Blues Challenge

photo by Seeing Redder, Flickr
photo by Seeing Redder, Flickr

If you are a blues fan, all roads lead to Memphis this week. Hundreds of blues musicians come from all over the U.S. and the world to take part in this annual five-day event, held January 20th to January 24th this year. Performers for the challenge are chosen by local blues societies to compete in three categories: Best Band, Best Solo/Duet, and Best Self-Produced CD–all for cash, prizes, and industry recognition.

Last year, over 250 acts competed in semi-finals in the clubs on Beale Street so expect an explosion of the blues this year, too.

International Blues Challenge
The Blues Foundation
421 South Main, Memphis TN 38103
Phone: (901) 527-2583

photo by Barsnbands.com, Flickr
photo by Barsnbands.com, Flickr

Since the IBC is a showcase for new talent, many of today’s top blues artists competed in the past, including Tommy Castro, Eden Brent, Albert Castiglia, Susan Tedeschi, Delta Moon, Diunna Greenleaf, Zac Harmon, Larry Garner, Super Chikan, and more. Here is a list of this year’s participants, many of whom will be the stars of tomorrow:

2015 Blues Challenge Entries

photo by Mario, Flickr
photo by Mario, Flickr

The official list of this year’s IBC semi-finalists has been released so check out these artists live in the Beale Street clubs as they advance to the next round.

2015 Blues Challenge Semi-Finalists

photo by f8inMemphis, Flickr
photo by f8inMemphis, Flickr

The winners will be chosen at the IBC final battle of the bands on Saturday night in the historic Orpheum Theatre. Cheer on your hometown favorite or just go for the amazing talent on stage.

Here is a list of the 2015 IBC winners:


The Orpheum Theatre
203 South Main Street (at Beale) Memphis, TN 38103
Phone: (901) 525-3000

photo by suz2337, Flickr
photo by suz2337, Flickr

2014 Blues Awards on WKNO


See all the grit and glamour of the 35th annual Blues Awards on Public Television for the Mid-South. WKNO Channel 10 will broadcast the ceremonies on Tuesday, November 25th at 8:00 pm, repeating at 1:00 am. It also airs Wednesday, November 26th at 8:00 pm on WKNO2.

This annual event brings together top blues artists, industry reps, and fans from all over the world to Memphis every May to celebrate the year’s best blues recordings and performances.

photo by Echo Industries, Flickr
photo by Echo Industries, Flickr

If you weren’t able to attend this year’s event in person, it’s a great way to see the nation’s best blues musicians receive awards in 25 categories. The 90-minute program captures thirteen live performances from Charlie Musselwhite, James Cotton, Rory Block, Kim Wilson, Beth Hart, and many more. Where else would you be able to see so much smokin’ hot talent on one stage!

7151 Cherry Farms Road
Cordova, TN 38016


If you don’t live in the WKNO viewing area, you can still enjoy the program on a DVD/CD combo from the Blues Foundation for $25. The DVD includes additional performances by Rory Block, Anson Funderburgh, and Trudy Lynn that are not included on the companion live CD.

The Blues Foundation
421 South Main
Memphis, TN 38103-4464


2014 Blues Music Awards

001-Blues-Music-AwardsPresented by the Blues Foundation, the annual Blues Music Awards are held Thursday, May 8th at the Cook Convention Center in downtown Memphis. Now in its 35th year, the awards showcase the best in blues and a who’s who of artist will be in town to celebrate the music and take home some hardware.

This year, legends like Charlie Musselwhite, Lurrie Bell, Buddy Guy, and James Cotton will be attending but here is a full list of deserving nominees:

If you are in Memphis (lucky you!), you can buy tickets for the evening’s event here:

The Blues Foundation


If you can’t be there in person, Sirius XM’s B.B. King’s Bluesville radio show is covering the evening’s events.  They are sending  hosts Tony Colter and Big Llou to provide colorful coverage, interviews, and live performances during the ceremony.