The Modern Day Bluesman by Albert Castiglia BLUES FESTIVAL MAKES A COMEBACK
The winners have been announced, and the readers of Blues Blast magazine, a free weekly Internet blues music magazine published by Illinois Blues, have voted, choosing the winners in the publication's second annual Blues Blast Music Awards. Last year, over 11,000 readers from all 50 states and 40 other countries voted online for their award winners, which included Chicago blues legends Buddy Guy and Koko Taylor. Nominees in eight categories are chosen by the magazine's staff, music writers, managers, musicians and other industry professionals. For your consideration, here is a complete list of all of this year's Blues Blast Music Awards nominees and their categories, with the winners noted by bold text: Best Contemporary Blues Recording The Insomniacs - At Least I'm Not With You Nominees: * The Insomniacs - At Least I'm Not With You * John Nemeth - Love Me Tonight * Nick Moss & the Flip Tops - Live At Chan's: Combo Platter No. 2 * Curtis Salgado - Clean Getaway * Janiva Magness - What Love Will Do * Shemekia Copeland - Never Going Back Best Traditional Blues Recording Various Artists - Chicago Blues: A Living History Nominees: * Various Artists - Chicago Blues: A Living History * Guy Davis - Sweetheart Like You * John Primer - All Original * The Mannish Boys - Lowdown Feelin' * Shirley Johnson - Blues Attack * B.B. King - One Kind Favor Best Blues Song Albert Castiglia - "Bad Year Blues" Nominees: * Albert Castiglia - "Bad Year Blues" * The Insomniacs - "At Least I'm Not With You" * Chris James & Patrick Rynn - "Mr. Coffee" * Curtis Salgado - "20 Years of B.B. King" * Kenny Neal - "Let Life Flow" * B.B. King - "See That My Grave is Kept Clean" Best Blues Band Nick Moss & the Flip Tops Nominees: * Nick Moss & the Flip Tops * Lil' Ed & the Blues Imperials * Kilborn Alley Blues Band * The Mannish Boys * The Insomniacs * Watermelon Slim & the Workers Best Male Artist Elvin Bishop Nominees: * John Primer * Bobby Jones * Lurrie Bell * Nick Moss * John Nemeth * Elvin Bishop Best Female Artist Robin Rogers Nominees: * Shirley Johnson * Robin Rogers * Diunna Greenleaf * Shemekia Copeland * Eden Brent * Janiva Magness Best New Artist Debut Recording Chris James & Patrick Rynn - Stop And Think About It Nominees: * Chris James & Patrick Rynn - Stop And Think About It * Joanne Shaw Taylor - White Sugar * Dave Herrero - Austin To Chicago * Cedric Burnside & Lightnin' Malcolm - 2 Man Wrecking Crew * Guy King - Livin' It * Eden Brent - Mississippi Number One Sean Costello Rising Star Award Kilborn Alley Blues Band Nominees: * Kilborn Alley Blues Band * Joanne Shaw Taylor * Albert Castiglia * Dave Gross * Cedric Burnside & Lightnin' Malcolm * Eden Brent Winners were announced at an all-star live show on Friday, October 30, 2009
Posted by Deborah Ramirez on August 17, 2009 09:10 PM http://weblogs.sun-sentinel.com/features/a...illinois_b.html The South Florida guitar hero has done good with "Bad Year Blues." Castiglia has been invited to perform at the Illinois Blues Blast Awards Oct. 29 at Buddy Guy's Legends in Chicago. He's been nominated by Illinois Blues, a free internet magazine, for Best Blues Song of the year and the Sean Costello Rising Star award. Fans have until Aug. 31 to vote in this contest. This is Castiglia's second nomination for "Bad Year Blues," a song he wrote and recorded on his 2008 CD release "These Are The Days" (Blue Leaf). He was nominated for a Blues Music Award for best song earlier this year and performed at the BMA show in Memphis on May 7. POSTED IN: Blues (203), Deborah Ramirez (269) http://www.albertcastiglia.com http://www.myspace.com/albertcastiglia http://www.jambase.com/artists/31279/Albert-Castiglia http://www.reverbnation.com/albertcastiglia Voting for the 2009 Blues Blast Awards at http://www.illinoisblues.com/bbma/2009/bbmavote2009.php CD Reviews of "These Are The Days" http://www.albertcastiglia.com/html/reviews.html http://www.jambase.com/Artists/31279/Albert-Castiglia/Forum These Are The Days A) XM Blues Picks To Click reached #3 W/E 6/14/08 Music Choice Blues reached #3 W/E 7/7/08 C) On the Weekly Blues Roots Charts for 23 weeks D) Living Blues Charts for 3 months E) Blues Critic Award, Song of The Year "Bad Year Blues" Confirmed artists performing at the ceremonies so far include: Kenny Neal, Nick Moss & The Flip Tops, Shirley Johnson, Albert Castiglia, John Primer, Chris James & Patrick Rynn w/ Bob Corritore, Kilborn Alley Blues Band, Robin Rogers, The Insomniacs, Dave Herrero, Guy King, and Dave Gross. Tickets are only $25 and will go on sale August 31st, so grab those discount airfares now and come join the fun at the most famous Blues venue in the world. Oh yeah, and if you have not voted you can still join the fun and vote for your favorite Blues artist until August 31st. .
by Terrance "Gatorman" Lape I went to the Cool River Draught House and Eatery in hopes of getting an interview with Albert Castiglia. We had prearranged one, but it was not to be. Albert was just too busy and I really did not mind, because what happened when he hit the stage made up for it all. The Cool River Draught House and Eatery is rapidly becoming the spot to hear the blues and this past Friday night was no exception. Albert Castiglia and his band took the stage at exactly 9:30PM. Albert counted off and BAM the joint was jumping, I say the joint was JUMPING! This guy and his band can play my friends. Those of you, who know me, know that I am a blues fanatic. If someone claims to be a blues band and plays R&B, disco, house, rock or anything else I get up and leave. I recently did just that at a “Too Slim and the Tail Draggers” gig, too rocky for me. I’m sure someone can say, well it was rock blues. Well it still has that word rock, so that makes it “not my kinda blues.” I stayed all night long or at least as long as I could. I had L V Banks with me and every time I bring LV Banks to the Cool River I drive 150 miles. During the first break L V got out of his seat walked over to Albert put his arm around him. It was as if the king just knighted a loyal subject and Albert was his new knight. What an honor. During the drive to L V’s home, he said over and over “Man that boy can play. Yes sir, he sure can pick. He is a blues man." Albert’s band contains Sue Riveria on keys, Steve Gaskell on bass and Bob Amsel on drums. They are all stand out musicians and I might add very nice people. It was a pleasure to spend time with them. I talked to both Steve and Bob about their job and we all agreed that the rhythm section is the most important element in any blues band. I am a bass player and can contest to that. We discussed the fact that if a drummer or bass man stops in the middle of a song everybody knows it. A guitar player can stop whenever he wants, drink coffee (AL) or walk off the stage, go to the head and come back to a thundering applause. The bass and drums keep pumping no matter what, until the proverbial head nod or arm raise which signals the end. Those signals are very welcome ladies and gentlemen, especially when you have played “Shotgun” for twenty minutes. I saw Albert Castiglia two nights in a row. He was just as good one night as the other. Albert pulled off some real sweet slide work. He has the soul and emotion for what he does. He is not a blues wannabe. With the advent of youtube any nine year old can learn how to play. I’ve said this before and I will say this again, back in the day you had to drop a needle to learn a song. You cannot tell me that a nine year old knows about the blues. He cannot possibly. Some of these wanabe’s are really good, but just playing a guitar does not make one a blues artist. I find it funny when a kid sings my baby left me. I know of one 16 or17 year old guitar player that is dynamite and his parents are the first ones to tell you that. Unfortunately those same parents are ruining it for their son. They think they know how to get him to the big stage. They have no idea what it takes and basically are wasting time. They also are burning bridges along the way. His parents had better get it together before it is too late. I've often wonder what dark deep part of the world does a blues man go to to earn that emotion and soul? What part of their heart was torn out? Where is that guy who made a pact with you know who? I am not talking about Lord Voldermort or whoever. I’ll never know the answers to those questions. What I know is this, Albert has it and I hope he does not lose it for a long, long, time. Thank you guys and Sue for a wonderful blues filled night at the Cool River Draught House and Eatery. BLUES ME OR LOSE ME Terrance "Gatorman" Lape
Albert Castiglia nominated for A) Best Blues Song "Bad Year Blues" B) Sean Costello Rising Star Award Vote at http://www.illinoisblues.com/bbma/2009/bbmavote2009.php http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_q0WMNo8AsM Hey Blues Fans, The voting for the 2009 Blues Blast Music Awards is now open. Anyone can vote for their favorite Blues artist and your vote gets you a free subscription to Blues Blast Magazine. (If you are already a subscriber, you are good to go and vote too!) To vote now CLICK HERE. http://www.illinoisblues.com/bbma/2009/bbmavote2009.php To see a complete list of the 2009 nominees CLICK HERE. We want you to be an informed voter so our friends at GLT Blues Radio 24/7 have a "listening page" where you can sample the music of the nominees BEFORE you vote. CLICK HERE to listen now. http://www.wglt.org/programs/blues/blues_blast/blues_blast.phtml Voting will remain open until August 31st, 2009. Be sure to cast your vote to have a chance at the FREE prizes given away in random drawings each week to those who vote. You could win a CD, a T-shirt or FREE tickets to the Blues Blast Music Awards Ceremony on October 29th, 2009 at Buddy Guy's Legends in Chicago by voting. It's FREE and FUN so vote for your favorite Blues artists today, To vote now CLICK HERE. http://www.illinoisblues.com/bbma/2009/bbmavote2009.php Blues Blast Music Awards October 29th The 2009 Blues Blast Music Awards will be held at Buddy Guy's Legends on Thursday, October 29, 2009. Information on the artists playing and how to purchase tickets will be announced soon. We will announce some attractive sponsorship opportunities and some special advertising packages for the 2009 artist nominees, their management or record labels next week.
by Deborah Ramirez on May 12, 2009 Sun Sentinel "Sometimes what appear as failures are really successes in disguise." Tommy Shannon Double Trouble bassist As the story goes, Stevie Ray Vaughan was nearly booed off the stage when he first performed at the Montreux Jazz Festival in 1983. Most people that night weren't ready for his relentless guitar-playing style, except for two attendees in the audience: rock star David Bowie and singer-songwriter Jackson Brown. They later gave Vaughan the big break he needed. No one booed Albert Castiglia last Thursday night at the Blues Music Awards ceremony in Memphis, Tenn. The South Florida blues guitarist took the stage with his band after it was clear that he had not won the "Best Song of the Year" award. Instead, the prize went to blues artist Kenny Neal for his title track "Let Life Flow." Castiglia's disappointment didn't show -- on the contrary, he gave perhaps his finest performance, playing as if he had plugged himself, instead of his guitar, into the electric system. Castiglia performed his nominated song "Bad Year Blues" and "Big Toe," a blues song written by his buddy Graham Wood Drout, from the local band Iko-Iko. In a show of solidarity, several South Florida fans (mostly from the South Florida Blues Society)who had traveled to Memphis for the awards show were at the front of the ballroom dancing and cheering him on. And I noticed that others in the room who perhaps had never heard him before got up to dance. All in all, Castiglia had an extraordinary opportunity to showcase his talent to a national audience and he rose to the challenge. Sometimes success does come in disguise. I also want to mention Terry Hanck who opened the show with the other nominees in the "Best Instrumentalist-Horn" category. Hanck, a saxophone played who lives in Singer Island, had a very brief chance to show off his piercing tenor sax pitch. The award that night went to sax player Deanna Bogart. But Hanck's career is definitely in high gear, with his new CD "Always" and his increased visibility in the blues industry.
XM Blues Picks To Click ----------------------- #10 W/E 5/24/08 #7 W/E 5/31/08 #5 W/E 6/7/08 #3 W/E 6/14/08 Music Choice Blues ----------------- #5 W/E 5/20/08 #5 W/E 6/7/08 #3 W/E 7/7/08 #8 W/E 7/26/08 #6 W/E 10/18/08 #5 W/E 12/27/08 #3 W/E 2/7/09 Weekly Blues Roots Charts ------------------------- 23 weeks Living Blues Charts ------------------- #19 March 2008 #15 April 2008 #25 May 2008 Blues Critic Award Song If The Year "Bad year Blues" Albert has a BMA nomination for Song Of The Year for "Bad Year Blues" CD Reviews of "These Are The Days" -------------------------------------------------- www.albertcastiglia.com/html/reviews.html www.jambase.com/Artists/31279/Albert-Castiglia/Forum
MEMPHIS, TN. (Top40 Charts/ Blues Leaf Records) - 'Bad Year Blues,' a track written and performed by Miami-based singer/guitarist Albert Castiglia on his 2008 CD release, These Are the Days, was nominated for 'Song of the Year' by The Blues Foundation in an announcement made today. Winners in all categories will be announced at the 30th Annual Blues Music Awards Show on May 7, 2009, at the Cook Convention Center in Memphis, Tennessee. The Blues Foundation nominating committee was obviously taken with the killer guitar hooks and memorable lyrics of 'Bad Year Blues,' the lead-off track on These Are the Days, a CD that helped launch Albert Castiglia to new heights in both critical acclaim and album sales. In addition to 'Bad Year Blues,' his latest CD also contains four other original songs written by Castiglia, including 'Godfather of the Blues,' a tribute to his former boss and mentor, the late, legendary Junior Wells. 'Albert Castiglia shows an expressiveness and originality in approach that identifies him as an emerging star within contemporary blues circles,' said Nashville's City Paper in its review. Miami's New Times cited the CD as 'a worthy platform for his searing vocals, which are authoritative beyond his relatively modest years, as well as his extraordinary performing prowess ... his exceptional solos, sizzling slide guitar, and firebrand execution reflect the thrill of his live sets and make These Are the Days a memorable statement.' Blues Revue summed it up best when it said: 'This is a flat-out, hands-down, unconditionally great record.' Born in New York and raised in Miami, Albert Castiglia began playing guitar at 12. In 1990, he became a member of The Miami Blues Authority and was later voted 'Best Blues Guitarist' by New Times magazine in 1997. Shortly thereafter, he was spotted by legendary blues singer/harmonica player Junior Wells, who asked Castiglia to join his band as a guitarist and singer. With Wells as his mentor, Albert performed at clubs and festivals across America, as well as in Canada and Europe. During that time, he also got the opportunity to play and jam with many other blues stars, including Pinetop Perkins, Ronnie Earl, Billy Boy Arnold, Lurrie Bell, Jerry Portnoy, Eddy Clearwater and Otis Clay. After Junior Wells passed away, Castiglia toured with Atlanta blues singer Sandra Hall. In 2002, Albert launched his solo career with the debut CD, Burn, collaborating with his longtime friend, Graham Wood Drout of south Florida band Iko-Iko. Drout's visceral, yet literary songs became the perfect vehicle for Castiglia's soulful vocals, which recall Van Morrison, and stinging guitar playing. In 2006, he released his second album, A Stone's Throw, which included two more Drout compositions, 'Big Toe,' and the amazing 'Ghosts of Mississippi,' which has all the earmarks of becoming a blues classic. Castiglia and Drout also released a live CD together, titled The Bittersweet Sessions, in 2005. Voting for the Blues Music Awards is now open to all current and potential new members of The Blues Foundation at http://www.blues.org/bluesmusicawards/vote.php4. For more information on The Blues Foundation, visit http://www.blues.org. For more information on Albert Castiglia, visit www.albertcastiglia.com.
Albert Castiglia learned to play guitar in his early teens and got his start professionally by playing with the Miami Blues Authority in the early ’90s. Junior Wells liked what he heard and hired him as his own guitarist/vocalist on several of his world tours. After Wells passed away, Castiglia joined Atlanta-based blues singer Sandra Hall for a while, then started his own solo career, which to date has featured two studio albums and a live release. Over time, he has developed an aggressive guitar style that serves as a fine compliment to his sturdy, but soulful vocals. Castiglia’s latest release, on Blues Leaf Records, is These Are The Days. It’s a mix of solid cover tunes and impressive original compositions. His originals include the clever “Bad News Blues,” the lively “Twister,” and “Godfather of the Blues,” a warm tribute to his mentor, the late Junior Wells. Longtime collaborator Graham Wood Drout contributes another fine tune, the upbeat “Celebration.” The covers are mostly familiar tunes. Fenton Robinson’s “Somebody Loan Me A Dime” gets a slow burning treatment, as does the blues standard “Need Your Love So Bad.” Both offer Castiglia a wonderful opportunity to really stretch out on guitar and his vocals fit the songs like a glove. Castiglia also does a good job on Nappy Brown’s “Night Time Is The Right Time,” though the background singers could have been a little grittier. Every cut is a winner here. Castiglia’s guitar and vocals are excellent. The band (Susan Lusher – keyboards, Steve Gaskell – bass, Bob Amsel – drums, along with Ken “Stringbean Sorensen on harmonica and Rio Clemente on organ) provide first-class backing. These Are The Days shows that Albert Castiglia has developed into one of the more exciting talents to emerge on the blues scene in a while. Fans of high-energy blues and incendiary guitar work won’t be disappointed with this release. Check out his website at www.albertcastiglia.com. --- Graham Clarke