Johnny Winter - Special guest Dave Herrero & The Hero Blues Band - 3/5
at City Winery Chicago
- 6:00 pm
- 8:00 pm
For 40 years Johnny Winter has been a guitar hero without equal. Signing with Columbia Records in 1969, he immediately laid out the blueprint for his fresh take on classic blues with a powerful combination of authentic Texas funk and his own high energy interpretation for the legions of fans just discovering the blues via the likes of Jimmy Page and Eric Clapton. Constantly shifting between primal country blues in the vein of Robert Johnson to scorching electric slide guitar, Johnny has always been one of the most respected singers and influential guitar players in rock and the clear link between British blues rock and American Southern rock ala the Allman Brothers and Lynyrd Skynyrd.
Throughout the 70s and 80s he was the unofficial torch bearer for the blues, championing and aiding the careers of his idols like Muddy Waters and John Lee Hooker. The Johnny Winter story is the stuff of legend. Born in Beaumont, Texas, in a rough and tumble oil town he grew up listening to and then playing Blues and Rock 'n' Roll at a very early age. His inclusion in a story about Texas music in Rolling Stone in 1968 ignited a bidding war among record labels for his phenomenal talent.
Since 1969 and his self-titled debut, Johnny has recorded almost 40 albums of classic rock and blues and was one of the top arena rock acts in the mid-70s. In the late 70s he produced and played on a stunning series of Grammy award winning albums with Muddy Waters, who affectionately referred to Johnny as his "son." The recordings served as a "comeback" for his idol while also refreshing his own deep and unwavering love of the blues.
Today Johnny Winter is enjoying an unparalleled resurgence performing to sold out shows worldwide even after a long life full of honors and accomplishments such as a triumphant appearance at Eric Clapton's 2007 Crossroads Festival with Derek Trucks, Buddy Guy and Clapton that has been immortalized on the Emmy award winning DVD. In a ceremony with Slash presenting in Nashville, Gibson Guitars released the signature Johnny Winter Firebird guitar that has been his beloved trademark for years. A Live through the 70s DVD is a hit along with his Live Bootleg Series CDs that have all entered the Top 10 Billboard Blues charts. Two unique instructional DVDs have been produced by Cherry Lane/Hal Leonard to the gratitude of players around the world. Always one for special appearances he recently performed with the Allman Brothers at the Beacon Theater in Manhattan on the 40th anniversary of their debut.
In addition Winter has been headlining such prestigious events as the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival, Chicago Blues Festival, Swedish Rock Fest, Warren Haynes X-mas jam and Europe's Rockpalast viewed by millions just to name a few. Warner Bros. has now released a 40th anniversary DVD of Woodstock: 3 Days of Love and Peace the Director's cut featuring, for the first time, Johnny playing his smoking classic "Meantown Blues." His latest highly acclaimed release “Roots” (Megaforce/Sony) and recent performance on The David Letterman Show has only added to his Texas-sized reputation. Joining him on this CD is his scorching road-tested touring band consisting of guitarist Paul Nelson, bassist Scott Spray, and newly added drummer Vito Liuzzi. Performing now with a renewed vigor and fire to say that he is "back" would be an understatement. In fact, he never left. He is just better than ever.
Dave Herrero & The Hero Blues Band
Dave Herrero has been singing and playing guitar professionally since the age of 18. He's fond of saying that music is in his blood. “My grandfather, with a third-grade education, was arranging for 17-piece orchestras in the Dominican Republic by the age of 16. His band, Luis Herrero & The Dominican Serenaders, played the World’s Fair in NYC in 1939 and the first color broadcast television show ever out of NYC. So the way I see it, I’m simply carrying on a family tradition.”
Dave has had a steady career to date, playing USO tours of Hungary, Bosnia and Macedonia, where he played guitar with Archie Bell and the Drells (“Tighten Up!”), touring Europe 13 times under his own name and working with his current band, featuring some of the finest musicians anywhere. Dave Herrero & The Hero Brothers Band are currently touring throughout Europe and the US, and you can find them performing monthly at Buddy Guy’s Legends in Chicago. He also recently had the privilege of co-producing a new CD for soul/blues legend Jimmy Burns entitled Stuck in the Middle.