The Bands

Ole Harv and the Blues Katz - 3:00PM

Harvey "Ole Harv" Stauffer has been the producer and host for The Blues Revue on WVPE radio since 1983. His show is heard weekend afternoons on 88.1 FM. He was born in Chicago, IL and his show's motto is: "Testify to the Blues". Ole Harv has fronted many area blues bands over the years, but is best known for being the front man for the Elwood Splinters Blues Band from 1996 to 2017.

Dale "Catman" Ballard began playing harmonica at age 16 and played in various area bands from 1976 to 1990. In 1992, he started Catman & The All-Niters that played all around the Michiana area.

Steve Harris started guitar lessons when he was 7 and played his first professional gig at age 11. He toured the Midwest with Cantaloupe Island, went to the Berklee College of Music in 1978 and was a professional musician in Kansas City from 1979 to 1981. He was then a studio musician at Star Fox Studios in Ft. Wayne and also performed in the legendary Dr. Bob Band until 1986. He has performed in numerous Michiana area club bands.

Jeff Huff started his first band in 6th grade and has been at it ever since. In the late 60's and early 70's, he was in The Band-Its, The Periodical Sun, and The Prime Source. After high school, he was with Loveless, Runner and HAZ that played many local bars and clubs in Michiana. For the past 20 years, he's been a member of The Source and an acoustic duo with son Colin called Huff's Enough.

Johnny "on the spot" Smeltzer is a local blues man that has been playing bass for over 50 years. He has shared the stage with the likes of Koko Taylor, Chief Eddie Clearwater and Eddie King just to name a few. His unique style and sound has been compared to Donald "Duck" Dunn and Willie Dixon. He has worked with many area bands and his smooth grooves compliment any project he is in.

The band also features Grant "Shecky" Darby on drums.

Funky Mojo Daddy - 5:00PM

The members of MojoDaddy are all top-shelf musicians who have achieved considerable success with their respective groups. Throughout their careers, these guys have taken the message of Chicago blues and traveled the world to spread it with artists such as Buddy Guy, The Kinsey Report, Steepwater Band and Green Room Rockers. The group consists of Kenny Kinsey (bass/vocals), Jerry Porter (drums/vocals), Jeff Massey (Slide guitar/vocals) and Ryan Frahm (guitar/vocals).

Joining forces for this CD and to take that message further, they've built a high-energy blues, funk/soul, roots-rock supergroup who thread the spirit of the past into this ten-song disc with creative, passionate playing. Employing a trio of accomplished, fire-breathing guitarists (Nick Byrd, Corey Dennison, Jeff Massey), a rock-solid rhythm section (Kenny Kinsey, Jerry Porter), and four distinct-yet-complementary vocalists (Byrd, Dennison, Massey, Kinsey), the band fuses their musical tastes into a must-have disc for any hardcore blues-rocker who has an occasional sensitive moment.

Together, they have quickly gained a reputation for being one of Northwest Indiana/Chicagoland area’s top blues bands and rhythm sections. All of this has led to them appearing on a regular rotation at some of the areas hottest live music venues and annual summer festivals.

These musician’s pride themselves on playing with heart and soul, creating an unstoppable energy. Their intense delivery of the music will have you up and dancing, while never letting you forget where our musical debt is owed.

Big James and the Chicago Playboys - 7:00PM

"Big James" Montgomery has played with Little Milton, Albert King, and Buddy Guy before becoming the trombonist and lead vocalist with the Chicago Playboys, the Windy City's premier R&B ensemble. Right Here Right Now provides ample servings of The Playboys unique-horn-driven sound, which is a little R&B, a little jazzy funk and whole lotta soul. It features eight original compositions as well as covers of Bobby Bland, Tyrone Davis, and the O'Jays, all highlighted by precisely-executed horn arrangements and dynamic, soulful musicianship.

Led by trombonist and vocalist Montgomery, the Chicago Playboys today are comprised of Charlie Kimble on saxophone, Kenny Anderson trumpet, Joe Blocker keyboards, Mike Wheeler guitar and vocals, Larry Williams bass and Cleo Cole drums. -Peter "Cornbread" Cohen

Larry McCray - 9:00PM

Larry McCray's heart and soul are in the blues. Of that, there's no question. It's been 25 years, award-winning ones at that, of scalding-hot and tasteful blues from the Arkansas-born, Michigan-based singer, guitarist, bandleader, songwriter and heir apparent to a lineage that includes personal influences and heroes such as B.B. King, Freddie King, Albert King, all of whom he's had the chance to meet and play with.

McCray's eight albums have blended reverence for that tradition with his own soulful spin on the form, and those achievements have been noted with an Orville H. Gibson Male Blues Guitarist of the Year award as well as the Top Guitarist prize in International Blues Matters' 2014 writer's poll. But there's a part of McCray here that has a rock 'n' roll beat too, and he's following that on his latest release, The Gibson Sessions, a 12-song set featuring some of his personal favorites by Lynyrd Skynyrd, Bob Seger, ZZ Top, Gregg Allman, the Doobie Brothers, the Rolling Stones, Creendence Clearwater Revival and others.

The Gibson Sessions is as much a Larry McCray album as the 1990 or 91 debut Ambition or any of the others that followed in its wake. "I always try to move forward and remember where I came from," McCray says. This album is a way to do these songs I love and maybe get them heard by people who like that music already, but do it in my own way so I can have some of my personality and self-identity within the music."