​​​​​South Skunk Blues Society



​In a Pan

Website: www.flashinapan.com

A collective of Iowa City musicians have teamed up to ramble every where from street corners to red carpet events. Founded in 2012, named on the assumption that the band would play two shows and dissolve; the band is currently in their fifth year of playing all over the Midwest. These pickers and grinners bring a fun mix of folk music of many shades. With warm humor and fiery content, this band will have you dancing and laughing, singing and stomping, and cherishing the moments we drink to remember! Noted for their shining harmonies, provocative compositions, and heart-felt performances, Flash in a Pan dishes out a sound that is all at once familiar and refreshingly different.

The South Skunk Blues Society is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to preserving and cultivating Blues music. The Society promotes public performance opportunities for Blues artists, and seeks to increase the exposure to and appreciation of Blues music by the general public.



Website: https://www.aveygrouwsband.com

"Avey/Grouws Band resides on the Iowa edge of the Driftless and deep in the heart of the Blues" - Tim Eddy

Hitting hard with a soul for Blues, Rock & Americana, Avey/Grouws Band takes charge and audiences are taking note! Winners of the 2017 Iowa Blues Challenge. Semifinalists at the International Blues Challenge in Memphis.

Forming in January of 2017, the Avey/Grouws Band has started a buzz with memorable performances at The Prairie Dog Blues Fest, The Mississippi Valley Blues Fest, Smokin' In Steele BBQ & Blues, and by winning the 2017 Iowa Blues Challenge and advancing to the Semi Finals at the International Blues Challenge in Memphis. 





While other guys his age were going to college, getting married, buying homes, and building professional careers, Hector Anchondo was playing guitar. He lived on the road, and when he wasn’t on the road, he lived on couches. He got jobs as he needed them, but quit as soon as he could get back on tour. He put off having kids. He put off marriage. Instead, he played guitar. 

His guitar playing became a thing of legend in the Omaha area, where he was based. But as much as he was beloved by his thousands of fans in the Heartland, he remained largely unknown to the rest of the world. 

Not anymore. With a finish in the finals at the 2016 International Blues Challenge and his masterful 2017 album Roll the Dice getting global radio play and leaping to the top of blues charts, Hector Anchondo is at long last taking his rightful place at the forefront of the contemporary blues world. 

Growing up on a Missouri farm, Anchondo picked up guitar as a teen, soaking up roots music, Latino music, bluegrass and old blues. As soon as he finished high school, he headed for Omaha to start a career in music. 

The young guitarist started hitting jam nights every week, where older musicians recognized his prodigious talent and took him under their wings. Within only a couple years, he had a hot original Latin and reggae band and a song on local radio. Anchondo toured with that band almost non-stop for the next 10 years. 

When the recession of 2008 happened, work dried up in the music scene. Anchondo realized it was an opportunity to do something that had been pulling at him for years. He wanted to play blues, full time. 

When you put your mind to doing the thing you were born to do, the universe helps. Anchondo got an unexpected call from an old friend in St. Louis who had a record label, and who wanted to help him make a blues album. 

The album did well; he did another two years later. Omaha embraced Anchondo’s new direction and sent him to the International Blues Challenge twice. In 2015 he made the semifinals; In 2016 he made the final nine. 

Things keep getting better. Anchondo’s 2017 album Roll the Diceimmediately made major waves on blues charts and blues radio worldwide, hitting the top 25 on the Living Blues chart and spending many weeks on the Roots Music Report blues and blues rock charts. Critics fell over themselves to heap the album with praise, calling it “fabulous”, “inventive”, “magnificent”, and “absolutely beautiful.”

Already another album is in the works, and Anchondo is expanding his tour base. Soon audiences all over the world will get a chance to experience what Omaha fans have loved for so long; the smooth smoky voice that can make you smile even as tears fill your eyes, the audacious grooves of his powerful band, and the lyrical mastery of Anchondo’s guitar, telling the story of a life lived for the love of music.

The Blue 2

Est. 1992



Opening Anthem

Between Sets


27th Annual Bowlful of Blues
SUNDAY • SEPTEMBER 1, 2019 • Noon - 10pm • Gates open 11:00 a.m. • $25 advance, $30 at gate • 15 & under free with parent

26th Annual Bowlful of Blues (2018)


Stutterin' Jimmy







Website: http://www.gradychampion.com

Mississippi-based, Grammy Award winning songwriter, entertainer/musician, Grady Champion has been captivating audiences for more than two decades. The singer/harp player/guitarist/songwriter/producer signed to Malaco Records, headquartered in nearby Jackson, MS, in 2013; his first full-length release with the legendary blues label was released the following year. His album, Bootleg Whiskey, named for the George Jackson song, that is one of the album highlights, establishes Champion as a torch carrier for authentic Mississippi blues. 

Grady Champion was born Oct. 10, 1969 and grew up on a farm in Canton, MS within a religious household. The youngest of his father's 28 children, he joined his church choir at the age of eight and realized his passion for music. When he was 15, he and his family moved to Miami, FL, but he only attended high school there for a year before moving back to Mississippi to graduate. 

Grady returned to Florida at the age of 18 and started in the music industry as a promoter for the rap label Sun Town Records. By the early 90s he embarked on a brief career as a rapper, performing under the moniker MC Gold. However, he soon discovered that he had a natural talent for the blues, and he incorporated hip-hop into blues music. At the age 24, he worked for FJH Music, owner Frank J. Hackinson, once President of Columbia Pictures, for 5 years; learning the ins and outs of the music business as he worked to build his career as an entertainer/musician. In 1998, after learning to play the harmonica, Grady released his first album, the self-released Goin' Back Home. 

Champion enjoyed performing at blues clubs all over Florida, and was quickly scooped up by Shanachie Records, with whom he released Payin’ for My Sins (1999) and 2 Days Short of a Week (2001). In 2003, Champion’s song, co-written with Kevin Bowe, 

entitled "Trust Yourself" was included on Etta James’ Let’s Roll album (2003), won a Grammy Award for Best Contemporary Blues Album and a Blues Music Award as the Soul/Blues Album of the Year from the Blues Foundation in 2004. Back in Mississippi: Live at the 930 Blues Cafe followed in 2008, released on Grady’s own GSM Music Group imprint. In 2010, he won the International Blues Challenge, enabling him to expand his regular tour itinerary to include most of the U.S., Canada, and Europe. He has since played the Chicago Blues Festival, the Legendary Blues Cruise, and the Portland Waterfront Blues Festival. 

In 2011, Champion released his album Dreamin’, his song "Make That Monkey Jump" won a Blues Critic Award in the Best Down Home Blues Song category. and Tough Times Don’t Last (2013) on his own Grady Shady Music imprint, the former of which was nominated for two 2012 Blues Music Awards: Best Soul Blues Album and Song of the Year for "Thank You for Giving Me the Blues." 

"I play what I feel," says Grady Champion, whose socially conscious lyrics and inspiring live performances have earned him a 2014 cover story in Living Blues magazine. His appeal has crossed over between predominantly white fans of traditional blues and predominantly black soul-blues fans. "I think blues has a bright future . . . you just gotta be able to hang in the game." With an album on Malaco and a touring schedule of approximately 180 performances per year, that is just what Grady Champion is doing. 

Grady’s newest album, ONE OF A KIND, will be released on Malaco Records in September 16, 2016; which will be his 10th album released in his career (1st album was as a rap artist in 1990, Going Gold).

Shaun Murphy

Website: http://www.shaunmurphyband.com​

    I was fortunate in 2013 to be the Bluesblast Music Awards, Best Female Blues Artist Of The Year, and also win Best Contemporary Blues Album Of The Year for my release of Ask For The Moon, as well as three Grammy nominations. My CD, It Won’t Stop Raining, brought me a nomination for the Koko Taylor Award. With my most current release, Mighty Gates, created a cross genre CD of which I wrote 7 of the tunes, and included a couple from my favorite artists. Dobie Gray had sent me ‘Mighty Gates’ a little over 5 years ago, and I thought it a perfect fit for the times! As a young woman in 1969 I found my way to the Blues stage at the first Ann Arbor Blues Fest, and was completely smitten. Music had captivated me and I had truly found my calling. After a brief stint on Broadway I had the opportunity to land a recording contract on Motown Records to record a duo album with Meatloaf, called Stoney and Meatloaf. My time at Motown was wonderful and after these many years in LA, I had been invited to record and tour with my old friend, Bob Seger, what an honor! During a hiatus with Bob, I was asked if I’d be interested in coming to record the backing vocals on Eric Clapton’s ‘Behind The Sun’ album. We recorded this great record, and Eric asked me if I’d like to do the tour, it was too good to be true! It was on Bob Seger’s tour in ’86 that I met Bill Payne and Fred Tackett, two of the members of the legendary band Little Feat. A little after recording on the re-grouped band’s CD, Let It Roll, they asked me to join as a full member in 93’, and for the next nearly 16 years, it was my home.
It was after this stint with Little Feat that I realized I’d come full circle back to where I started, in the world of the Blues.