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Time For The Blues line up the unusual suspects

ZZ Top Aerosmith Chicago albums
We round up the unusual suspects this week!

Once upon a time, Henry Cook and I would explore artists and groups that stepped outside of their comfort zone and release a blues album. Or two. Guys and Gals that you wouldn’t think of as major blues players often released something that kicked – well you know what.

We called these artists “Unusual Suspects.”

We’ve brought many of them back for an encore performance on Time For The Bluesthis Saturday night, June 18th, at 9:00 on VPM-Music or streaming online at

Now, I don’t want to give away all the surprises, that would defeat the purpose of the show, but I will share some and give hints to a few others. First there’s those Texas Tornados, ZZ Top, who love the blues and have fused the genre into more than a few of their songs. In our show they tackle an Elmore James classic and Billy Gibbons tears it up! They also do one of their originals that’s been covered by several other artists. These three hombres have certainly left their mark on the blues.

Another Unusual Suspect made their mark by telling us to “Walk this way!” That’s right, Aerosmith released a strong blues album and we’ve got a couple of sides from it for your listening pleasure. They perform songs from the likes of Peter Green and Bo Diddley with their own inimitable style.

The one that really surprised me was Chicago. I always thought of them as more softer rock but it turns out they can really jam and that horn section can add a lot to their Chicago style blues.

There are more Unusual Suspects coming your way. There’s one artist who is so unusual who works her way through an Albert King classic; there’s another band who can keep Superman at bay because they have a pocket full of kryptonite.

Be on the lookout for one of the smoothest voices of the early rock era giving a great performance of a Charles Brown classic.

Since it’s a Henry retro show, you can bet the Brits will be here as well. We’ve got three artists from across the pond who made their names in the rock arena who never forgot their blues roots. I could give you clues but they would be too easy and I really want you to enjoy what Henry has put together.

We’ve even got a sneak preview of some upcoming shows with a sample from Charlie Musselwhite’s new disc, Mississippi Son and one from the supergroup The Rides.

Speaking of sneak previews, be sure to join me on Monday night, July 4th from 7:00 to 9:00 as I unveil the first episode of John’s Porch. I’ll be flying solo and featuring a variety of music: Blues, Americana, Folk, Country, Jazz, World, Zydeco, basically whatever makes you feel happy. After that Monday program, I’ll be on my usual Sunday morning spot of 11:00.

Henry Cook and I will be glad to have your company if you care to join us at 9:00 this Saturday night. That’s June 11th, and you can find us on one of these great VPM Stations: 89.1 WCNV, Heathsville; 90.1 WMVE, Chase City; and the flagships, 93.1 and 107.3 VPM-Music and 88.9 HD2, Richmond, and streaming online at where it’s always Time For The Blues!