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Magic Slim to bring the blues to FD

Lizard Creek Blues Society hosts Chicago legend

November 25, 2012
By JOE SUTTER, , Messenger News

For its 12th anniversary, the Lizard Creek Blues Society is bringing one of the great legends of blues to town.

Magic Slim and the Teardrops will perform at 9 p.m. Friday at the Best Western Village Inn and Suites.

"He is one of the most decorated and most respected living blues musicians currently playing," said Kyle VerSteeg, vice president of the Lizard Creek Blues Society. "If you think Chicago-style blues, he is pretty much the guy."

Article Photos

-Submitted photo
Magic Slim, who represents classic Chicago-style blues, will perform on Friday at the Starlite.

Magic Slim was born in Mississippi, explained Lizard Creek President Bob Wood. When he was young, Slim lost the little finger on his right hand on a cotton gin, leading him to play guitar and bass instead of piano.

"He came from the south where many, many blues players from the '40s and '50s came from, who eventually traveled to Chicago," Wood said.

Magic Slim, whose real name is Morris Holt, played with Magic Sam in Chicago, who gave Slim his nickname. Slim played the Chicago scene and became a "real legend" as time went on, Wood said.

Fact Box

If you go:

WHO: Magic Slim and the Teardrops.

WHAT: Lizard Creek Blues Society concert

WHEN: Doors open at 6 p.m. Friday. Mudd Jugg Blues Band opens at 7 p.m., Magic Slim at 9 p.m.

WHERE: Best Western Starlite Village Inn and Suites

TICKETS: $15 in advance, or $20 at the door; available at Fort Dodge, Humboldt and Webster City Hy-Vee stores, CSBank, Olde Boston's Restaurant, Access Audio and Rieman Music.

"Six times he has been named the blues band of the year and blues artist of the year by the Blues Foundation in Memphis, Tenn. They are the authority, they're kind of like the Oscars for blues music," Wood said.

"I've always wanted to have him here. He's one of the people who always been on my wish list," Wood added. "We're now at the point with the blues society we've been around long enough we can call acts like this and actually make them an offer they'll accept."

In 12 years, the society has gained a loyal following, VerSteeg said.

"We've had pretty steady growth in our membership, throughout the years," he said.

"The nice thing about the blues world is we can get big name acts because they cross through our state from one coast to the other. ... We get a lot of people who are big international names to stop and play in Fort Dodge."

VerSteeg is the drummer in the opening band, Mudd Jugg, which includes his wife Gretchen VerSteeg, vocals and keyboard; Zach Davis, bass; and Justin Kramer, vocals and guitar.

"Right now we're focused on building our original repertoire," VerSteeg said. "We play some Koko Taylor, and we play some Freddie King, we do a lot of stuff that a lot of artists who have had a keyboard or a female lead singer.

"We cover the standards, but we put our own spin on it to fit us."

"It's a bluesy sound, bluesy rock," Wood said.

"We're humble to be offered the opportunity to play for such a big act," VerSteeg said. "It of course means that we have to put on our best show, so lots of pressure and very humbled at the same time."



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