Performing this year at the Belle Bash is Tommy Z Band on August 24th, a contemporary blues artist and radio host from Buffalo New York. On July 28th the Belle Bash features Larry Keel, described by critics as one of the most powerful and innovative guitarist today! Wrapping up the Belle Bash on Aug 10th is Eric Gales Band described by Carlos Santana as "Absolutely Incredible"
Michael Glabicki & Dirk Miller of Rusted Root Date: Friday August 3, 2018
Rusted Root, the multi-platinum band out of Pittsburgh, evolved around front-man Michael Glabicki’s distinct sound and grew into a musical entity that has thrived in a non-genre specific category all its own.
In addition to the two decades with Rusted Root, Glabicki is exploring new sounds and opening new doors with his solo career. He has started touring nationally as a duo with Rusted Root’s guitar player, Dirk Miller, and explains that although he has his roots with Rusted Root, this show is very different. Live, both Michael and Dirk play acoustic and electric and Michael often adds rhythm with a kick drum – creating a much fuller sound and energy than you find with a traditional duo.
A multifaceted musician, producer and songwriter, Glabicki’s talents are unique and extremely uplifting. His duo tour dates and new music are extensions of his creative talent, and while the show still features many Rusted Roots hits, it also provides a look into the mind of Glabicki through stories and songs yet to be released.
Tommy Z is a contemporary blues artist and radio host from Buffalo, NY who has been described as a “blues treasure” by legendary 97 Rock/WBFO DJ Jim Santella, and “one of WNY’s best kept secrets” by Sarah French, Blues Matters Magazine. He is a guitar-driven electric blues-based stylist onstage, but in the studio Tommy composes a variety of music. So while experienced and studied in traditional blues, jazz and rock styles, Tommy is an artist who puts that soulful blues feeling into all the different styles he plays. He’s been been recognized with numerous awards over the years, including being voted Top Blues Vocalist in Western New York 2003/2004/2006, Top Blues Guitarist 1993, 1994, 1995, 1997, 2004, 2005, 2006 and his band has won the Top Blues/Crossover Blues Band categories 1994, 2005, 2006, and was honored with the Muddy Waters Award for “Artist of the Year” by the Blues Society of WNY in 2004. In 2007 Tommy was inducted into the Buffalo Music Hall of Fame, recognizing him alongside some of the best talent to ever come out of WNY (and also making him ineligible for any more music awards!). He has had the opportunity to perform with/or co-bill with some of the worlds’ top artists in the blues/rock genre including: B.B. King (and daughter Shirley), Buddy Guy, Johnny Winter, The Fabulous Thunderbirds, Jeff Healey, Colin James, Tinsley Ellis, Roomful of Blues, Blues Traveler, Derek Trucks, Joe Bonamassa, Robert Randolph, Peter Frampton, Carey Bell, John Mayall, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Tommy Castro, Duke Robillard, Elvin Bishop and many more including a tour backing up Grammy-winning blues legend Pinetop Perkins (Muddy Waters Band). Tommy has come a long way from playing the top bars and music venues in Buffalo to being an international and domestic festival headliner.
The son of a Vietnam-era veteran, he has been bringing a taste of home to US troops overseas since 2003 with blues-based concert tours in Iraq, Afghanistan, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Qatar, Japan, South Korea, Djibouti, Italy, Spain, Portugal, Egypt, Turkey, Guam, Alaska and other distant locales on behalf of USO/AFE. Rolling Stone Magazine called some of these locations, “The most dangerous gigs on Earth.” Tommy contributed guitar tracks to Deep Purple vocalist/Rock and Roll Hall of Famer Ian Gillan’s CD on Immergent called Gillan’s Inn, on the track “When A Blind Man Cries,” which also featured blues-rock legend Jeff Healey and of course Deep Purple’s Jon Lord.
In 2006 a CD entitled Universal Love was produced with outstanding Canadian engineer/producer Nick Blagona (BeeGees, Chicago, Police), and it was described as “soul-rockin’ blues” by Bob Putignano, NYC Blues Society President and Sounds of Blue DJ (WFDU), “awesome” by Bob Silvestri, Best of WNY, and “should feature high on your list of ‘new’ acts to investigate” Mick Rainsford, Blues in Britain Magazine. He’s been featured/mentioned in industry magazines such as Fender’s Frontline, Mix Magazine, Blues Matters, Blues Blast, Blues Music Magazine (Germany), Blues-E-News, Jazz/Blues Florida and Guitar Edge etc.
In addition to his performance schedule, Tommy is a Canisius College graduate, guitar teacher, and between CD’s as an artist he spent much of his creative time as composer/producer for Film, TV, Sports, etc. His credits include writing the victory song for the St. Louis Blues (NHL), Red Hot Chili Peppers Biography, Ryan and Sean’s Not So Excellent Adventure (iTunes #1 indie film), Last Comic Standing (NBC), TLC’s Stager Invasion, Animal Planet’s Swamp Wars (main title), Bravo’s Chef Roble and Co., Insane Pools: Off the Deep End, Discovery Channel’s Biker Live, America’s Top Model, Insane Pools/Off the Deep End and others.
The release of “Sometimes” in 2013 garnered even more national and international attention than “UL” and the secret was out. It made both the Roots Report Top 50 Blues Airplay charts, overseas blues charts in France, etc. and made the first round of voting for Best Blues Album at the Grammy’s. It received glowing reviews in such publications as American Blues Scene, Blues Rock Review, About.com/blues and many more. Tommy tours around the United States and abroad as featured act and as headliner at top venues and blues festivals. In 2015 the band was invited to be the international headliners for the Cali Blues and Folk Festival in Colombia, South America for nearly two weeks of concerts and master classes which were extremely positive in their reception. In 2015 Tommy was hired as a new blues radio host/DJ by the NPR/WNED affilated station WBFO 88.7 FM where he programs classic and modern blues music for listeners in the WNY/Southern Ontario area and online at www.wbfo.org.
The follow-up album, “Blizzard of Blues” was released in the Winter of 2016. Two weeks before the official release date it debuted as the #1 Blues Rock Album (RMR) where it spent eight straight months on the RMR charts. On the day of release it shot up onto iTunes Top 10 Blues Chart while being featured and then it debuted on the Billboard Blues Top 10 Album Chart alongside such greats as Billy Gibbons, Gary Clark Jr., Johnny Winter, Buddy Guy, Tedeschi/Trucks, etc. It was the only release on there by an unsigned independent artist chart. The reviews and accolades and chart positions continue to pile up for “BoB” including a debut on the Feb. 2016 Living Blues Radio Chart at #14 elevating Tommy to new career heights.
Larry Keel is described by music critics and reviewers as the most powerful, innovative and all-out exhilarating acoustic flatpicking guitarist performing today. Keel has absorbed the best lessons from his Bluegrass family upbringing, both sides deeply steeped in the rich mountain music culture and heritage of Southwest Virginia. From there, he has always integrated that solid musical grounding and natural-born talent with his own incomparable approach to playing amplified, acoustic guitar and composing original music. He’s also got a knack for choosing interesting and appealing material from all realms of music with guts, whether it’s a tune written by a fellow song-writer/musician friend, or a surprise cover from any number of musical acts all over the map. The combination is pretty irresistible, and has earned Keel the highest respect and billing among the top acoustic and jam rock musicians alive, and some now gone: Tony Rice, Chris Thile, Steve Martin, Tim O’Brien, Vassar Clements, Sam Bush, Del McCoury, John Hartford, Bill Monroe, Peter Rowan, and Danny Barnes to name a few.
And his fierce, high-spirited energy also appeals to young rockers, jammers and alt-country pickers and fans who are equally drawn to Keel’s blazing guitar power, the deep rumbling voice, his earthy and expansive song-writing, and his down-home-gritty-good-time charm. Keel convenes and collaborates with JamBand and Rock giants Greensky Bluegrass, Infamous Stringdusters, Yonder Mountain String Band, Keller Williams, Jorma Kaukonen, David Nelson, Little Feat, Railroad Earth, String Cheese Incident, Fruition and Leftover Salmon, amongst others. Keel has a variety of musical formats he presents throughout the year; look out for his core band The Larry Keel Experience (featuring award-winning and highly accomplished Jared Pool on mandolin and penetrating vocals, and wife Jenny Keel with her rock solid bass lines as well as tenor vocal harmonies), Larry Does Jerry (Keel performing the music for Jerry Garcia and the Grateful Dead), Larry and the Smokin’ J’s (featuring Jon Stickley, Jay Starling and Jared Pool), Keller Williams and the Keels, and steady swirl of pairings with Keel and Drew Emmitt, Andy Thorn, Danny Barnes, members of the Del McCoury Band, Steep Canyon Rangers, just to name a few. Of note for early 2017 is Keel’s top billing at New York’s Carnegie Hall, where he will headline along with Al Di Meola, Stefane Wrembel and Stochelo Rosenberg at the Django A Go-Go concert, celebrating Django Reinhardt’s influence on the world of guitar music. Throughout his career, Keel has released 15 albums and is featured on 10 others. The most recent release, March 2016, is EXPERIENCED, an entirely original work that showcases Larry’s and banjo virtuoso Will Lee’s exceptional songwriting, singing and jaw-dropping instrumental performances, accompanied by Keel’s equally talented wife Jenny Keel on upright bass and harmony vocals. This Americana Radio charting album exemplifies the raw sophistication of Keel’s progressive acoustic style, and features musician-friends who appear as guests on various tracks of Experienced; the artists include Sam Bush, Del McCoury, Peter Rowan, Keller Williams, Jason Carter (Del McCoury Band), Mike Guggino (Steep Canyon Rangers) and Anders Beck (Greensky Bluegrass). Quotes about Keel and his music from these artists themselves capture the essence of what this album and Keel’s artistry represents.
“One of the best, if not the best guitar player in the world”Joe Bonamassa
“He is absolutely incredible”Carlos Santana
“How Eric Gales isn’t the hugest name in rock guitar is a total mystery”Dave Navarro
“This guy could be the best player on Earth”Mark Tremonti
“I feel the most free I’ve ever been in life, even more so than when I was a kid…you gotta help yourself man, once you can help yourself you can genuinely help someone else.” Eric Gales
You want the blues? “Unfortunately you have to go through some things to be free”, says Memphis born Eric Gales. “Now, I feel the most free I’ve ever been in life, even more so than when I was a kid”, he opens up. “You gotta help yourself man, once you can help yourself you can genuinely help someone else.”
The title of his new album Middle of the Road is the running theme throughout the record. “It’s about being fully focussed and centred in the middle of the road. If you’re on the wrong side and in the gravel you’re not too good and if you’re on the median strip that’s not too good either, so being in the middle of the road is the best place to be.”
Middle of the Road is Eric Gales fourth album on Provogue/Mascot label Group (Joe Bonamassa, Beth Hart, Black Stone Cherry, Warren Haynes, The Robert Cray Band, Robben Ford, Eric Johnson, The Kenny Wayne Shepherd Band) and it sees him at his most expressive yet; it is a deeply personal and reflective record that echoes where he is in his life right now and he opens himself up and allows himself the chance to really flourish.
It’s well documented that Gales was a child prodigy and heralded as the second coming of Jimi Hendrix when he released his debut album The Eric Gales Band in 1991 as a 16 year old on Elektra Records. It was the first of 10 albums on a major label through a blistering career. He has released 14 studio albums in total ahead of Middle of the Road and a host of other collaborations, one of which led him to work with producer Fabrizio Grossi (Alice Cooper, Joe Bonamassa, Billy F. Gibbons, Ice T, Leslie West, Slash, Walter Trout, Steve Lukather, Steve Vai, Paul Stanley, Supersonic Blues Machine).
Talking about working with Eric, Fabrizio Grossi offers; “I’ve been a fan of Eric since I first worked with him 15 years ago on a project with George Clinton & the P.Funk. His tone and his playing was wicked. Personally and musically Eric grew into a ‘monster’ , a really good one and he’s set on a path of huge success with a ‘taking no prisoners’ type of attitude! I know a very few musicians with such a musicality and Eric is right there a head of the bunch. I hope fans will dig. There’s lots of love, tears, sweat and “truth” in this record, which is what classics are made of. As far what I think about him: Eric is simply Miles Davis’ and Jimi Hendrix’ love child, that’s my story and I’m sticking to it.”
Recent years have seen an array of musicians singing the praises of Eric Gales. Dave Navarro (Jane’s Addiction – Red Hot Chili Peppers) exclaimed that “How Eric Gales isn’t the hugest name in rock guitar is a total mystery”, modern blues icon Joe Bonamassa said he is “One of the best, if not the best guitar player in the world”, whilst Mark Tremonti (Alter Bridge) said in a Classic Rock Magazine interview (Oct 2016) that “me and Myles [Kennedy] were on the bus looking up clips and we ran into some Eric Gales clips and we were just like ‘this guy could be the best player on Earth.’”
Talking about the accolades he is starting to receive he humbly adds;” It’s absolutely great, I’m grateful to see the recognition for the work that God has allowed me to continue to progress with. It’s beautiful to see the recognition to be finally coming and in the proper way, unlike times where I was engaged into heavy addiction, where it wasn’t such good publicity, but to see it be changed around, it’s a great turn of events.”
This refers to the time he spent in jail serving at the Shelby County Correction Center in 2009 for possession of drugs and a weapon. Elaborating he adds; “While I was in there all the officers and guards were like, ‘bro you know this isn’t where you’re supposed to be. When you get out of here, go take the world by the horns and ride it all the way out.’ It took a couple of years after but, I’m here.” Whilst he was incarcerated he was able to play shows, for the Mayor, the city and festivals, his own version of Johnny Cash Walk the Line.
This is where Middle of the Road finds the rebirth of Eric Gales. A new album that has seen him more free than he’s ever been and on the biographic songs you take this journey with him. Along the way he brings in not only a host of guest and collaborators, but also those closest to him; Lauryn Hill, Gary Clark Jr, Eugene Gales, LaDonna Gales, Lance Lopez, Raphael Saadiq and Christone ‘Kingfish’ Ingram.
“When I say the world will hear about it, you’ll see what I mean when you hear the record,” he says. “This record is going to take me everywhere that I’ve never been, and everywhere I’ve ever wanted to go.”Eric Gales
What is “Belle Bash”?
Growing up in Mayville NY a young Todd Wagner brought his love of music and Chautauqua Lake to the Chautauqua Belle. The Belle Bash started as a “kegger” with family and friends and has literally evolved from those days of 30 years ago.
Each year Lucky Dog Management and the Chautauqua Belle come together to bring the best, most acclaimed, nationally touring artists and bands to this very up close and personal venue.
The Chautauqua Belle offers a very personal and fun experience for both the band and the audience. Artists in the past have loved the Chautauqua Belle as an intimate venue, praising the personal and fun atmosphere. Whereas, after last year’s Butch Trucks appearance, he called the Belle “the most unique venue he has ever played,” which is remarkable, considering the thousands of venues he has performed in around the world as a founding member of the Allman Brothers Band.
The “Belle Bash” series
The “Belle Bash” series on the Chautauqua Belle dates back to 2013 and has included such names as New Riders of the Purple Sage, Butch Trucks and the Freight Train Band, Eric Lindell, Eilen Jewel, Chris Smither, Los Straitjackets, Sister Sparrow & the Dirty Birds, Samantha Fish, Dana Fuchs, Nikki Hill, John Nemeth and Jarekus Singleton to name a few.
*Lucky Dog Management (LDM) is a live music & event management company based in Johnstown, PA. Established in the spring of 2015, we are dedicated to planning, coordinating, producing, facilitating, and providing logistical support in all aspects of each live music event.
Todd’s background includes Chairing the Flood City Music Festival from 2009-2016. Much of the success of this festival can be contributed to Todd’s talent buying, logistical vision and attention to detail, overlapping for one exceptional event each August.
During his tenure, the festival saw significant growth with 70% of the festival goers coming from outside of a 60-mile radius of Johnstown. The festival boasted such internationally acclaimed acts as The Derek Trucks Band, Grace Potter and the Nocturnals, Los Lobos, Robert Cray, Galactic, Gregg Allman, JJ Grey & Mofro, Bettye LaVette, Dr. John, Del McCoury Band, The Smithereens, Trombone Shorty, Robert Randolph, Box Scaggs, G. Love, Marc Broussard, Anders Osbourne and many, many more.
Todd’s festival success carried over in 2016, when LDM was choosen to head up the newly renamed Happy Valley Music Festival in State College, PA. Now in the second year, LDM has brought another quality lineup to include headliners Spin Doctors and Charles Bradley.
Consequently, they have made the brilliant decision to take the show on the road and enjoy booking the “Belle Bash” Summer Concert Series on the famed Chautauqua Belle Steamboat. Ultimately, Lucky Dog Management aims to perfectly blend environment and experience to devise an exemplary event for our clients, artists, and audience.