Blues-Rock guitarist Eric ‘Rawdawg’ Gales was born on October 29th, 1974 in Memphis, Tennessee. The badass bluesman first picked up the guitar at just 4 years old, a child prodigy, his older siblings Eugene and Manuel taught him blues licks in the style of B.B. King and Jimi Hendrix. The Gales brothers talent run in their blood, their grandfather Dempsey Garrett Sr. jammed with Muddy Waters and Howlin’ Wolf while Gales older brother Manuel is known as Little Jimmy King and left his own mark on blues music performing with Albert King for many years.

Gales is known for his dynamic sound and fluid abilities on guitar, his signature style of left-handed playing (although he is right-handed) on his fully upside-down six-string guitar with the low E string towards the floor. “My solos are just my emotions, it’s indescribable. Sometimes, I’m like a savant, and anyone who’s seen me play knows I can’t contain myself. I’ll have sporadic screams comin’ out (laughs)… it’s intense, amazing! But that’s what playing guitar means to me” Gales told The Guitar Magazine.

Eric Gales began playing in blues competitions and by 1990 Eric and his brother Eugene signed with Elektra Records. With Eugene backing Eric on bass and drummer Hubert Crawford, the band released their first record ‘The Eric Gales Band’ in 1991. Fans named Eric the “Best New Talent” and soon after his second album released, he gained further recognition when Carlos Santana invited Eric to play with him during his 1994 Woodstock performance. Eric Gales went on to release seventeen albums, two mainstream radio rock hits, and today you can find him still recording and touring the world.

Eric Gales is a Keeping the Blues Alive at Sea alumni artist, catch him next year on the inaugural Keeping the Blues Alive at Sea cruise with Joe Bonamassa, Kenny Wayne Shepherd and many more!



Jazz trumpeter Clifford Brown was born on October 30, 1930, in Willmington, Delaware. His father gifted him a trumpet at the age of 13 and he picked up the instrument with great skill. After composing and playing in his high school and college jazz band he traveled to Philadelphia and started sitting in with many jazz greats such as Charlie Parker, who is credited with discovering Brown.

Charlie Parker created the bebop sound and Clifford Brown put his own unique signature on the sound by attacking every note in a style that came to be known as “hard bop.” Brown showed an exceptional ability to perfectly blend his technical skills with rich and graceful tones, as well as improvising long, full, melodic phrases.

His short life ended abruptly, in 1956 he was traveling to a gig at Chicago’s blue note when his car slid off the road. He was only 25 years old but had left the world with four years worth of recordings. His song “Joy Spring” and “Daahoud” became jazz standards and Saxophonist Benny Golson later composed a tribute to Brown called “I Remember Clifford.” Even Herb Alpert and Quincy Jones have hailed Brown as the “greatest trumpeter that ever lived.”



Blues-rock guitarist Ryan McGarvey is a rising star, guitar god Eric Clapton picked McGarvey to perform at his Crossroads Guitar Festival and Guitar Player Magazine readers voted him “Best New Talent” in 2013. At 30 years old he has already won three European Blues Awards, his style of scorching hot blues plus his passion and dynamic skills have proven him staying power and presence. Catch him at one of his international tours or pick up his new album ‘Heavy Hearted’ out November 27th.

Ryan McGarvey is a Keeping The Blues Alive at Sea alumni artist, book your cabin now to see him on 2019 Keeping the Blues Alive at Sea Mediterranean cruise out of Barcelona featuring Joe Bonamassa, Peter Frampton, and many more amazing musicians!



Jazz Saxophonist Lou Donaldson, also known as “Sweet Poppa Lou” and “Mr. Alligator Boogaloo,” was born in Badin, North Carolina on November 1, 1926. An acclaimed jazz saxophonist, Lou Donaldson’s work earned him recognition as a bebop master. Similarly to Clifford Brown, Lou Donaldson was also heavily influenced by Charlie Parker. “When I heard Charlie Parker, the clarinet was gone,” Donaldson told the press. He was also key to bringing Clifford Brown to Blue Note Records and their early work together is considered the fundamentals of early hard bop.

Donaldson is known for his soulful approach heavily influenced by the bebop era and his characteristic blues-drenched alto sax has been a force in jazz for decades. His best-known album ‘Blues Walk’ is a jazzy kick of bop mixed with rhythm and blues. The 1958 album showed Donaldson’s evolution of style into a more pronounced bluesy sound which jump-started the soul jazz movement of the early 60’s.



35-year-old European blues-rock guitarist Henrik Freischlader was born in Wuppertal, Germany. He started his career singing in small blues bands and formed the Henrik Freischlader Band in 2004. In 2011 t#1 Billboard Blues artist Joe Bonamassa played guitar on Freischlader’s title track on the album Still Frame Replay.  Freischlader plays multiple instruments, composes, writes, produces and releases the material on his own record label called Cable Car Records. Freischlader has released 14 albums and counting, today you can find him touring throughout Europe with his band.



Devon Ebersold for Keeping the Blues Alive

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