CHRIS THOMAS KING

21st Century Blues from New Orleans

Multi-talented Grammy Award-winning blues artist and actor Chris Thomas King has been known for his audacious fusion of blues and hip-hop, but the Louisiana-born King reached a whole new audience with the 2000 Coen Brothers film "O Brother, Where Art Thou?" -- not only appearing on the award-winning soundtrack but also playing a prominent supporting character, the legendary bluesman Tommy Johnson.

Chris Thomas King’s major contributions to the “O Brother, Where Art Thou” phenomenon, along with its follow up album and tour, “Down From The Mountain,” inspired a new generation of musicians such as Hozier, Mumford & Sons, and the Lumineers. His songs “Hard Time Killing Floor Blues” and “John Law Burned Down the Liquor Sto,’” to name a few, have been covered by numerous artists including legend Buddy Guy.

Despite the much-celebrated, down-to-earth rootsiness of "O Brother's" music, King had previously been a determined progressive, hoping to reinvigorate the blues as a living African American art with a more contemporary approach and refusing to treat it as a museum piece whose "authentic" forms needed careful preservation.

About the origins of the Blues and its social context, King says:  

“Blues, in New Orleans, Louisiana, at the beginning of the 20th Century meant blue entertainment, music not fit for polite society, music that was subversive, risqué, dissonant, bawdy, and conspicuously secular. Blues often mocked antiquated superstitions. Blues was the soundtrack to social progress and tolerance, it challenged the tyranny of the Church, and because of this, it was demonized.

“The blues, bohemian in origin, was loathed by the bourgeois; it was a threat to victorian prudishness. By the 1920s at the height of prohibition, blues was enthralling the nation. To dissuade the public, a concerted effort by polite society, turned the progressive word “blues” into a pejorative, forcing its practitioners to subsequently avoid being labeled “blues” in order to get good paying jobs in respectable venues.

“I’ve never shied away from being called a “blues artist.” Unfortunately, the public has, over the pass 100 years, forgotten its true meaning, how revolutionary it was at the turn of the 20th Century. The blues planted the seeds for America’s counter-culture, its quintessentially American music. I am proud to be its ambassador.”

King has won "Album of the Year" for both Grammy Award and Country Music Awards, has sold more than 10 million records in the United States, and is the leading blues guitarist of his generation.

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Show Dates & Times:

5/27/17 - Saturday

7:30 pm,
Admission: 

$20/Advance, $25/Door. Handling fee applies to online and phone sales.

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