Jun 24, 2014
09:39 AMArts & Entertainment
Mystic Blues Festival Lineup Includes Spin Doctors, James Cotton, Other Stars
A lot of people were surprised at just how much entertainment the Mystic Blues Festival was able to crank out last year in its maiden voyage.
But it should be no surprise when the nonprofit, family-friendly fest unfolds June 27, 28 and 29 that the lineup is as packed as it is, and it keeps getting better, with the recent addition of the great Joe Louis Walker as a special guest with Saturday headliner Johnny Winter.
Other highlights include the Spin Doctors on Friday; Christine Ohlman & Rebel Montez with The Sin Sisters, James Montgomery and Sugar Ray & the Bluetones on Saturday; and blues harmonica great James Cotton (right), Allman Brothers drummer Jaimoe’s Jasssz Band, Alexis P. Suter Band and Roomful of Blues on Sunday.
New Haven guitar icon George Baker will perform with Jaimoe’s band.
One reason for the solid lineup is the comparative leisurely pace festival organizers were able to work at this year, as opposed to the mere six months they had to put last year’s festival together, said organizing committee member, artist liaison and festival MC and spokeswoman Allison Abramson Kaufman.
The festival also has some goodwill from last year on which it can build.
“I think just about every musician that we had last year asked to come back,” said Kaufman, host of the “Morning Mojo” show on WCNI, 90.9 FM in New London and a writer for Sound Waves and Elmore magazines. So “we’re really trying to bring back some people that were with us last year, but also kick it up a notch.”
The festival, which takes place Friday through Sunday at the Mystic Shipyard West, 100 Essex St., originally was the brainchild of East Lyme blues guitarist Chris Leigh – the latest to hold the guitar chair in Eight to the Bar – and his wife, Amy Leigh.
Tickets are $78 per day or $207 for the weekend and are available at mysticbluesfestival.com. They also will be available at the gate. There also will be a separately-ticketed, 1-hour Saturday master class with Johnny Winter guitarist Paul Nelson $40, with details on the festival website.