The big city of Chicago is renowned for its music venues catering to all tastes, but it is particularly known for its blues. The Chicago Blues style emerged in the post-World War II era, when many African-American Southerners moved to the industrial North in search of work. Baltimore, on the other hand, is best known for its affinity for classical music and musical theater. It is also the birthplace of the legendary guitarist Frank Zappa. If you're looking for an authentic blues experience, you have plenty of options.
You can visit Boom Boom Boom in the Fillmore district of San Francisco, or head to the Arcadia Blues Club to hear some of the best live blues in the country. You can also visit The Funky Pirate Blues Club or plan your trip for October to attend the Crescent City Blues & BBQ Festival. Houston blues artists such as Trudy Lynn, known as the Queen of the Blues in Houston, and Grady Gaines may not have received popular notoriety like their counterparts, but they were quite well-known artists. Although Chicago, New Orleans and Memphis receive more attention for the genre, Houston's contribution to blues music is second to none. In fact, “I Got the Blues” by Anthony Maggio, the first 12-bar blues song published with the word “blues” in the title, was a hit in the city in 1908. And blues rock bands were established in the United Kingdom, especially those from the South East and Scotland. The origin of blues music can be traced back to 19th century England when the phrase blue devils referred to disturbing hallucinations caused by severe alcohol withdrawal.
When you're not busy listening to live music (or wiping the barbecue sauce off your face), Houston's other musical attractions will keep you busy. Blues is a form of secular popular music created by African-Americans in the early 20th century, originally in the South. Although Chicago has a large number of music alumni, including Tampa Red and Muddy Waters, this is a better destination for anyone who follows today's music. In the mid-20th century, Houston's Third and Fifth Districts had popular blues clubs everywhere, such as Club Matinee, Ett's Lounge, and Silver Slipper. Although instrumental accompaniment is almost universal in blues, it is essentially a vocal form. Whether it's true or not, there's no doubt that Mississippi Delta was an important birthplace of blues music.
Don Robey, the musical entrepreneur who opened the Bronze Peacock Dinner Club in 1945, and Lightnin' Hopkins, one of the best blues musicians of all time - both hailed from this region. So if you're looking for an authentic blues experience - whether it's live music or just soaking up some local culture - you have plenty of options. From Chicago to San Francisco to Houston and beyond - there are plenty of places where you can find great blues music.