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Portland, Oregon roots artist Lloyd Jones has recorded six critically acclaimed albums, toured internationally, and racked up dozens of major awards and accolades. He’s a relentless road dog, hitting festival stages and clubs all across the land to enthusiastic crowds who can’t get enough of his swampy blues, his backporch picking, his serious-as-anthrax funk, soul, roadhouse two-beats, and old-school rhythm and blues (back before the R&B tag was somehow appropriated for other musical purposes, apparently when we weren’t looking). Yet he may be the most invisible, best-kept roots/blues/Americana secret on the contemporary scene.
Robert Cray sings his praises the way Sister Rosetta Tharpe sang gospel. Delbert McClinton won’t cruise the high seas without him. Clarence “Gatemouth” Brown, Joe Louis Walker and Coco Montoya saw fit to record his songs (and some of those songs have turned up as soundbed music on national TV shows). He counts McClinton, Charlie Musselwhite, Marcia Ball, Bonnie Raitt, Tommy Castro, Jimmy Hall and other luminaries among his friends and musical cohorts, and can tell you stories that’ll curl your toes about touring with the likes of Earl King, Big Mama Thornton, Otis Clay, Etta James and scores of others. He’s shared stages and spotlights with Albert Collins, Cray, Raitt, McClinton, Taj Mahal, B.B. King, Dr. John, John Hammond, Junior Wells and Buddy Guy, and a hundred more. And except for Albert and Junior, God rest their souls, all will pretty much still say nice things about him. For years he’s been living, learning and interpreting in his own way this music for which he has so much respect. He’s recorded award-winning albums for Blind Pig, AudioQuest, Burnside Records and Criminal Records that gained him international acclaim. He’s earned every fan he has the hard way — by laying it down stinkier than year-old cheese every night on every stage and in every recording session.