The Gulf Coast's Entertainment Destination since 1967
Northwest Florida Blues Society Hosts Blues Challenge at Seville Quarter in Pensacola
The best of the best in the Pensacola blues scene got together to get down Saturday in Seville Quarter.
The Blues Society of Northwest Florida hosted their Regional Blues Challenge, bringing roughed-up riffs and bumping bass to Phineas Phogg's.
Eight bands competed for an expenses paid trip to compete at the 30th International Blues Challenge in Memphis, Tenn., in January.
Acts like Cat Daddy, True Blue, Tabascaloosa and Big Daddy Fox, and the Dizzy Jukes played 30 minutes of their best stuff for a panel of three judges and the Phineas Phogg's crowd.
Acts were judged on content, vocals, originality, instrumentation and stage presence.
Blues Society president Mike Bounds said winning Saturday's challenge could be a big break for a band as the international challenge in Tenn. is one of the world's largest, chock full of music industry insiders and booking agents.
"It's a big deal," said Bounds. "Even if you don't win when you go there it's still a tremendous opportunity because of who you're going to meet."
A small crowd of dedicated blues fans had gathered by the time things got underway, and soon they were nodding their heads and tapping their feet to the beat of Tabascaloosa.
Jan McCord and Scott Percer traveled from Birmingham to sit in on Saturday's tunes. Jan moved from Pensacola years ago and said it was good to get back.
"I've always loved the blues," she said. "It's the beat, the rhythm. I used to watch a lot of the musicians when I lived down here, and I thought this would be a great opportunity to see some old friends and some good blues."
The Blues Society of Northwest Florida got their start in 1996 and have grown to a full blown musical scene with a dedicated following and popular weekly events such as Monday Night Blues at Lili Marlene's in Seville Quarter.