Dirty Bourbon Blues Band Brings Unexpected Twists to Blues Repertoire

By Kelly Sabetta

“We are a rockin’ blues band,” said Seth City, of Dirty Bourbon Blues Band.

“We play a lot of original music…We have all played in bands of various styles over the course or our careers, so we tend to throw some unexpected twists into our blues repertoire. You might hear some reggae, or funk, or rock,” said Seth.

The Dirty Bourbon Blues Band was created in 2006 by founding members Seth City (guitar) and Pete Griffith (vocals, drums). Both jumpstarting their careers playing the blues, Seth and Pete acquired the help of one of their good friends, Gopi Joaquim (bass), to put a modern take on the music they played.

It wasn’t until 2008 that the band welcomed it’s fourth member, Zac Walker (saxophone), who adds a touch of Maceo to the group, and bringing with him horn hits and class to their original sound. In 2008, the band also parted ways with long-time bass player and friend. To replace him, they brought in bassist Adam Smith, who brings with him a funky, five-string flavor.

The band has played shows throughout the region, including opening for national acts, playing at weddings, large clubs, tiny pubs, motorcycle runs, and pig roasts. They’ve also recorded an album of their original music, in which they’ve handed out to their fans for free.

“We recorded a demo CD of 9 original songs in 2007 that we have given out, literally, thousands of copies of to our fans,” said Seth. “This has really helped the band’s reputation grow via word of mouth.”

Currently recording a full-length album, the band plans to release their new work by the end of 2010. “We are also working on new promotional photos and artwork, with the plan of getting some stickers, shirts, and other assorted merchandise ready for sale,” said Seth.

For those who will be attending this year’s Festival, expect to see an interactive performance.

“We are all younger than the ‘typical’ blues band, so we like to think we inject some energy and excitement into the genre,” said Seth. “Also, we have a kind of jam band element in that we interpret songs our own way, and have never played a song the same way twice. We all just mesh on stage and go where the music may take us.”

The Dirty Bourbon Blues Band shares a strong connection to the community, not only with their music and performances, but with causes they believe in. “We have played numerous charity benefit concerts for two issues very near and dear to our hearts,” shared Seth, “eradicating childhood disease, and breast cancer.”

For more information about the band, visit their Web site, http://www.dirtybourbonblues.com, and come see their live performance at this year’s Canandaigua Art and Music Festival, Saturday, July 17th, 2:45 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. on the Commons Park Stage.