Roy Book Binder
7:00 PM Saturday, July 10, 2010

Roy Book Binder at the Martin 2008
Roy Book Binder at the Martin 2008

Blues Legend Plays The Martin Hotel

The great Roy Book Binder is set to play a concert at the Martin Hotel on Saturday, July 10th. Something of a national treasure, Book Binder plays blues in the Piedmont style, a very old East Coast tradition based on ragtime and multi-part gospel guitar techniques.

Besides being a musical giant with unexceeded technique, Book Binder is known as a crowd-pleasing entertainer with deft comic timing, an encyclopedic knowledge of American roots music history, and an inexhaustible supply of tales collected over a lifetime of traveling and performing with greats like Brownie McGhee, Sonny Terry, Rock Bottom, Fats Kaplin, Doc Watson, Bonnie Raitt, and Ray Charles.

Book Binder emerged alongside pal Dave van Ronk in the New York City coffeehouse scene of the mid-60s, the beginning of the so-called “folk revival.” And, his repertoire includes “Bookaroo” songs, played in a folk style reminiscent of Rambling Jack Elliot, the New York City surgeon’s son who was Woody Guthrie’s hand-picked protege.

Book Binder’s real bailiwick, though, is blues in the East Coast or “Piedmont” style, named for the plateau that stretches from Richmond, Virginia to Atlanta, Georgia. The style evolved in the 20s, 30s, and 40s, when ragtime, parlor, and gospel guitar players like Blind Blake, Blind Boy Fuller, and Reverend Gary Davis began applying polyphonic finger-picking technique to the blues. Book Binder perfected his Piedmont technique as Davis’s protégé, working as the blind virtuoso’s driver and side-man during the late 1960s.

Book Binder has recorded seven albums, most in a “hillbilly” blues style that includes plenty of colorful banter between the tracks. Often, the stories and jokes stretch back to Book Binder’s formative years on the road with the Reverend Davis. Though based on old-time techniques, his songs sound fresh and relevant, often featuring original lyrics re-spun to reflect contemporary themes.

Book Binder continues to perform solo shows around the world, with more than 30 shows left this year alone. He also teaches at MerleFest and the Fur Peace School, and keeps an entertaining travel “blog” on his website, RoyBookBinder.com.

So, if you’re in town over the weekend, don’t miss the chance to see one of the great bluesmen of all time, up close and personal, right here in Winnemucca. The show starts at 7 PM on Saturday, July 10th, at the Martin Hotel on Railroad Street.

Ray Bonneville ~ Slow Burning Blues
7:30 PM, Thursday, June 17, 2010

$15 TICKETS ARE ON SALE NOW AT THE MARTIN HOTEL, NATURE’S CORNER, AND GLOBAL COFFEE.

Ray Bonneville is a roaming blues poet, inspired by the road and the many other places he has called home—New Orleans, Colorado, Arkansas, Alaska, Boston, Seattle and Paris, France.  Born in Canada and raised in the United States, Bonneville has lived all over.  No place, however, has been more influential than New Orleans.

In the streets and clubs of New Orleans, Bonneville soaked up the prevalent take-your-time attitude that ran through the music being played there.  “There’s something about the heat and humidity that makes people slow down,” he says.  “New Orleans is where I learned to take my time, to allow space between the notes so the songs could truly groove.”  That groove is at the core of Bonneville’s sound.  A one-man band, he backs up weathered, storytelling vocals with a highly percussive guitar style, dramatic harmonica lines and a foot that keeps the rock steady beat.  The result is a big sound with an almost primitive quality.  It’s visceral, raw music.

Like the great American writers of the south and his favorite authors Cormac McCarthy and Flannery O’Connor, Bonneville is inspired by the places he has been and the unusual people he has met throughout his travels.  His songs are like short stories, evoking true-to-life characters that stumble their way through a rough and tumble world of violence, hope and despair.  Heavily influenced by the natural world, Bonneville finds himself splitting his time these days between Montreal, Austin and Cotter, Arkansas, where he likes to write songs and fly-fish the White River.

Honing his craft for the last 30 years, Bonneville’s gritty storytelling and deep-grooving blues style has won him much critical attention.  In 1999, Ray won the prestigious Juno Award (Canadian Grammy) for his third album Gust of Wind.  His fourth release, Rough Luck, was also nominated for the coveted award.  With his 2004 Red House debut Roll It Down, Ray made himself a name in blues and roots music circles, garnering rave reviews from DownBeat and No Depression.  He has toured all over the world, sharing the bill with such blues legends as B.B. King, Muddy Waters, J.J. Cale and Robert Cray and in 2007 wowed the music industry with his bring-down-the-house performances at the South By Southwest and Folk Alliance conference.  A world-class guitarist, harmonica player and hard-hitting songwriter, it is no wonder that Ray has received rave reviews from blues, jazz and roots critics alike and can count among his fans such artists as Chris Smither and Ray Wylie Hubbard.  For more information about Ray Bonneville, please visit his website at www.raybonneville.com.