You are now listening to Jerry "Boogie" McCain's
"Alabama Blues" featured on the compilation CD available for purchase. Welcome to the ABP online store!

Also available:

The Crème Brûlées sing
"Mary's Cakes"
to benefit ABP

& the ever-so-trendy ABP T-Shirt

You can also become an official
Click here to donate online!















Dear Friends,

It has been a beautiful and very busy spring here at the Alabama Blues Project. Our Spring Blues Camp has been the biggest and best ever! 70 plus students have been learning blues history, beginning, intermediate and advanced blues music instruction - as well as life skills. We are also proud that the ABP is finding ways to better look after the health of our students and is going Green! Please read below about our healthy, fresh and organically grown snacks.

Don't miss our end of semester Blues Extravaganza Open House and ABP benefit at the historic Bama Theatre in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, on Friday, May 23. The very special featured acts will be our Blues Camp kids, the legendary Sam Lay and Mississippi's amazing youth band Homemade Jamz who have adopted us as their official blues charity - we are blessed indeed! Don't miss this opportunity to hear all these talented artists.

Please read about and help us welcome our new Alabama blues musician friends DeiDra Hurdle and Keith Ruff - who were special guests during spring camp. And go figure - international blues star Bobby Rush is coming here to Alabama to record his next album at Keith's Alabama based blues label Ruff Records!

I am so pleased with our ongoing intern program with the University of Alabama! Our interns have been working away at our archive projects plus we are delighted that Randy Shultz has joined us to assist with the Historic Marker Project.

Willie King's DVD Down in the Woods is nominated for a 2008 Blues Award. Check it out - and even better come on and get down with us in the woods by joining us at the 2008 Freedom Creek Blues Festival!

Our Summertime Blues Camp is guaranteed to be fun and really cool again this year. Besides the great blues music classes we are again offering blues art classes with world renowned folk artist Lonnie Holley and Miz Thang, dance classes and more to be announced.

Thanks to all of you who love and support this wonderful American music.

Wishing everyone peace and great blues,

The Alabama Blues Project extends a

Hohner has been a gracious provider
of Alabama Blues Project harmonicas
for both after-school and summertime
camps as well as our school residencies!

The 2008 Blues Camp Harmonica Players


Tuscaloosa Crawfish & Blues Festival
Saturday May 3rd
Willie King & The Liberators
J.J. Caillier & The Zydeco Knockouts
Rockin' Jake
and more!

Blues Camp Final Performance
Blue Extravaganza - Friday May 23rd
Bama Theatre in Tuscaloosa
Featuring Blues Camp kids,
Sam Lay, Homemade Jamz
& The Blues Instructors -
Gary Edmonds, Carroline Shines,
Debbie Bond, Doobie 'Doghouse' Wilson

Willie King’s 11th Annual
Freedom Creek Festival

Friday & Saturday, May 30th and 31st, 2008
Old Memphis, AL in Pickens County
Featuring Jerry Portnoy, Sam Lay,
Cedric Burnside and Lightnin Malcolm
Willie King and the Liberators

and many more!


Friday, May 23rd

ABP Blues Extravaganza BENEFIT CONCERT

At the Bama Theatre - Downtown Tuscaloosa

Call (205) 752-6263 for more information

Headlining is the 2008 ABP After-School Blues Camp Students

Also featuring...

Piedmont Artists Homemade Jamz


The Legendary Sam Lay



McAbee Construction


We are so proud that at the Alabama Blues Project we offer a lot more than a musical environment for kids. We have long been disturbed by the shocking statistics about the health and nutrition of American children (learn more here) and particularly the obesity and diabetic epidemic in our state. A recently released study from America’s Trust for Health reported Alabama as #1 in obesity. It also encouraged our schools to take action to combat the growing obesity and diabetic epidemic (learn more here).

Here at the Alabama Blues Project we made a New Year's resolution to make every effort to serve our students better by providing healthy snacks. Our Spring Blues Camp now offers organic and vital snacks as part of our after school program.

We were so excited when naturopathic doctor Dr. Cox ( returned to Tuscaloosa and opened a practice in our community and offered to act as consultant on this project to better serve our children. In a world where children often expect junk food, Dr. Sarita has found impressively creative ways to offer fresh organic snacks - like apples with freshly ground peanut butter and carrots with yogurt ranch dip, herbal tea juice punches as well as snack bars and cookies with the best ingredients available (no trans fats, no high fructose corn syrup, no colors, dyes, additives or preservatives). Dr. Cox is heading up the ‘healthy snacks’ program in cooperation with local health food store, Manna Grocery. Additionally, 2008 has brought about a stronger commitment to holistic and green projects such as recycling, reducing and reusing.



The Freedom Creek Festival this year is on May 30th and 31st on Old Memphis Road in Old Memphis, Alabama, which is near Aliceville. The gates will open at 4:00 p.m. on Friday and 11:00 a.m. on Saturday. Both nights the bands will finish around 10:00 p.m. Free camping is offered on site.

The festival will feature premier blues talent including — but not limited to — Jerry Portnoy, the legendary Sam Lay, Willie King & The Liberators, Cedric Burnside and Lightenin Malcolm, Mudcat, Highlander, Alabama blues women Carroline Shines, Debbie Bond, Shar-Baby and Sweet Claudette, plus Alabama blues talent "Birmingham" George Conner, Jesse Daniels, Rev. Little, Julian Conner, Taylor Moore, Caleb Childs, Grapevine, Robert, Alex, and more!

Freedom Creek benefits the Rural Members Association (RMA, Inc.), a non-profit organization that seeks to preserve traditional local culture and assist the community in Pickens County. RMA was founded in 1983 to bring together elders in order to pass on the heritage of traditional African American cultural arts and survival skills by teaching them to the younger members of the community. RMA projects have impacted thousands of children and adults and have included traditional crafts like sewing, quilting, carpentry, farming, canning, food preserving, gospel music and of course the blues. RMA founded Freedom Creek Blues Festival to bring all walks of life together once a year allowing local musicians to display their musical talent alongside national and international acts, helping to keep the spirit of the blues alive in the land in which is was born!

Admission is a suggested donation of $6 on Friday and $12 on Saturday. The funds will go to support the RMA. Additional tax-deductible contributions are appreciated and will help support the much-needed work of the RMA.

The festival is made possible by grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Alabama State Council on the Arts, Music Maker Foundation, and the Black Belt Community Foundation with assistance from the Alabama Blues Project.



One of the featured guest artist during the 2008 ABP Spring Blues Camp was Alabama newcomer blueswoman DieDra Hurdle. DieDra performed for our 70 plus blues camp students and shared with them how music has helped her in her life. Like many of our blues camp children, DieDra faced many hardships and challenges during her childhood from which she found solace in the healing power of music.

"I had a very good life I think, but there were a lot of dynamics there. My mother was so young when she had me, so even though I was loved at home by my grandfather and family, it still felt a little like I was on the outside. There were five of us children all together," adds DieDra. "I wrote my first song when I was in 10th grade and it was about problems at home, problems with a boy."

"When I was in high school I used to write poetry," says DieDra. "It was my escape. That turned into the ability to write songs. When you write something down and let it out, it's not on you anymore." DieDra performed spectacular songs from her new album. "Overcoming Hurdles" and her heartfelt presentation was a genuine inspiration to our students and teachers alike.

Early this year, DieDra moved to Pinson, Alabama, with her husband and music collaborator, Alabama native Keith Ruff. Keith is the owner of Ruff Pro Records and producer of her album Overcoming Hurdles. In addition to his work with his record company and studio, Keith is the lead guitar player for Bobby Rush and produced Bobby's latest CD. So through DieDra we have discovered another wonderful Alabama blues musician in Keith Ruff!

DieDra was born and raised in Norfolk, Virginia, and was raised by her maternal grandfather, who wrote and sang in church as the minister of The Church of God in Christ. The youngest member of her family, DieDra was the lead singer of her family's group from the age of eight. Later, when she lived in the hill country of Montclair, North Carolina, she was introduced to the blues through juke joints. As a child, she and her friends would sneak out and sit outside the juke joints, listen to the music and peek through the windows, while adults would sometimes slip them pig's feet and other snacks.

She became a big fan of Betty Wright's - who she later opened for in 1997! Johnnie Taylor was her favorite musician. There was only one radio station where she lived, so DieDra was exposed to all types of music including a lot of country. She was mainly performing R&B until she met Keith, and is happy now to be singing the blues.

"The R&B side is a different crowd. It's a lot more critical and competitive. I felt totally uncomfortable trying to push into the R&B industry in my 30s when most of them are so young," explains DieDra. "I really love blues because they just want you to make them feel good. You don't have to have a certain kind of image."

Earlier in her career, in 1996, she met the late Charlie Cross of Brunswick, Georgia, and he signed her to his management company. After opening up for artists such as Al Green, Betty Wright, Avant, Carl Thomas, and Sunshine Anderson, DieDra never gave up on her dream. In 1998, DieDra was signed to Big East Entertainment in the Bronx, New York, with her very first recording contract. DieDra worked hard for 10 years but without producing a completed album.

In 2007, DieDra received a call from a producer that was affiliated with Big East but located in Birmingham, Alabama. He was the original producer assigned to kick start DieDra’s career back in 1998 - and he was none other than Keith Ruff. He immediately signed DieDra to his own Ruff Pro Records. They began dating, then worked so well together they were able to record her long-awaited CD in less than a month. DieDra had written five of the songs on the album prior to recording, and the other five were a collaboration between DieDra and Keith.

Photo by Jan King of Two Sisters Photography

ABP Discovers Alabama Blues Guitar Player Keith Ruff
and his Alabama-based blues label!

Alabama native and blues guitar player Keith Ruff is a living testimony to Alabama's rich blues culture. Guitar veteran Keith has been traveling the blues highway and playing for world renowned blues legend Bobby Rush for the past 15 years!

It was the "backwood blues" of Alabama that created the foundation for Keith's early influences. Everyone in Keith's family plays music of all styles but he was particularly inspired by two of his uncles, Sam and Cornelius McKinney, who played blues guitar.

Keith describes the blues he heard in the countryside of Pinson in the mid 1970s and early 1980s played in local shot houses and juke joints where people were always having parties and live blues was being played.

"We'd sit up and watch it all night," says Keith. "Then, we'd all go home and try to play it on the guitar ourselves."

He joined Bobby Rush's band thanks to the bass player Terry Richardson, also a Pinson, Alabama, native. He heard just one song - and knew immediately that Keith was a perfect match for the Bobby Rush Band. He's now been with the band for 15 years. Keith is the talented showman one would expect from someone in Bobby Rush's show. He swings his guitar around and plays with his teeth while displaying virtuoso guitar licks!

Keith chose to move his home and headquarters back to Penson, Alabama, where he founded Ruff Records. He is presently working on Bobby Rush's new album. We are definitely going to be watching this space and looking forward to good sounds coming out of Alabama blues label Ruff Records and our new friends DeiDra and Keith!

UPCOMING SHOW FOR DEIDRA: June 15th - Royal Blue Lounge (Snellville, Illinois)


The Alabama Blues Project sends our congratulations to Alabama native Jody Williamswho is the recipient of the 2008 The Blues Trust Lifetime Achievement Award given in recognition of his contributions to American music. This award is presented by the Blues Trust Productions located in Melrose, Massachusetts.

Photo of Jody Williams at the Blues Trust Lifetime Achievement Awards

Joseph Leon Williams was born in Mobile, Alabama on February 3, 1935. Jody moved to Chicago with his family in 1940. He started his life in music as a harmonica player, meeting Bo Diddley at an amateur talent show. He asked Diddley to teach him to play guitar and in 1951 he started to play behind Bo. The following year they were joined by Billy Boy Arnold on harmonica.

That was the beginning of his association playing with a long line of musicians who would become legends of the Blues. He played with pianist Henry Gray, Memphis Minnie, and Elmore James and was a roommate of Otis Spann. He also toured with Charles Brown and Johnny Moore.

In 1954 Williams recorded sessions at Chess Records with Howlin’ Wolf, who had just arrived in Chicago. His guitar can be heard on the Wolf classics "Evil (Is Going On)", "Forty Four," and "Who Will Be Next." In addition, he played on Bo Diddley’s recording, "Who Do You Love" and Billy Boy Arnold’s "I Ain’t Got You."

Williams recorded with one of his influences, B.B. King, on Otis Spann’s Checker single, "Five Spot." Listening to William’s instrumental, "Lucky Lou," you can hear the inspiration for Otis Rush’s popular hit "All You Love (I Miss Loving)."

After a tour of duty in the Army he returned to Chicago and the music business until the late 60s. He eventually grew tired of the little return and recognition for his work. He retired from music, becoming an engineer for Xerox to support his family. His trusty Gibson "Red Lightnin'" sat silent under his bed for years.

After attending a Robert Lockwood Jr. show at the beginning of the 21st Century, he decided to pick up Red Lightnin' once again. Williams released two critically acclaimed recordings for Evidence Records. In 2002, Return of a Legend earned him a W.C. Handy Award for Comeback Album of the Year and paired him with old friend Billy Boy Arnold. You Left Me In The Dark was released in 2004 and includes a guest appearance by Robert Lockwood Jr. Both discs were produced by Dick Shurman.

In a sad twist of fate and commentary on the financial state of the Blues, Red Lightnin' sits in the Chicago Music Exchange, traded in for cash and a new blonde Epiphone guitar. Even a legend, whose instrument made legendary music, has to make tough decisions in order to survive. Jody Williams' role in American music is significant and secure.

Content compliments of Blues Trust Productions


Willie King's DVD documentary Down in the Woods, by Dutch filmmakers
Saskia Rietmeijer and Bart Drolenga of Visible World Films, has been
nominated for Best DVD at the 2008 Blues Foundation Awards.

Click Here to See a Preview of the DVD

The DVD is a fascinating collage of Willie King's life and many activities, illuminated with searing live performances and interviews with his family and friends. It enables the viewer to experience something of what it is like to be a modern bluesman living in the Alabama Black Belt, "down in the woods."

Born on a cotton plantation in 1943 the son of poor sharecroppers, Willie was drawn to the blues at an early age. He made his first guitar out of bailing wire when he was seven and has been playing ever since. Cotton picker, moon shiner, juke joint owner, civil rights activist and social worker – Willie has done them all and now is one of the most popular blues musicians around.

He plays big stages and festivals but always returns to his beloved Old Memphis, a small and mostly African-American community in rural Alabama where he lives in an old trailer and preaches the blues at house parties and in ramshackle juke joints. Willie spends much of his time supporting his local community and teaching young people the traditional culture and survival skills passed on to him from his people's share cropping and slave ancestors.

Willie King is one of the true innovators of the blues in the tradition of Howlin' Wolf and John Lee Hooker. His music is powerful – an exciting, danceable mix of rural blues, soul and boogie, all in his own distinctive style. King's lyrics are often political, fighting racism and a voice for poor blacks in the South. He preaches a message of peace, togetherness and social justice for all people around the world.



from Connect Savannah
by Jim Reed

Most folks who were either raised in the South —or who have taken it upon themselves to learn a bit about the popular music traditions which have emanated from this region over the past century or so — cannot help but have at least a cursory knowledge of both traditional rhythm and blues and black gospel.

However, despite ample and undeniable evidence which demonstrates that these two seemingly incongruous genres are in fact inextricably linked (“bound to be bound” to borrow a phrase from a songwriter friend of mine), there still exists no small amount of confusion over the roots of not only rural, acoustic “country” blues and its cousin, electric “city” blues, but of their flashy grandchild: rock and roll.

Adolphus Bell knows this heritage better than most.

Now in his sixties, this “one-man-band” from Alabama (who sings and plays guitar while also playing a small drum set with his feet) has been performing raw blues and R & B for the past four decades.

“I’m one of the last and lost survivors of the blues,” he says with a chuckle, before somberly reflecting, “I’ve seen a lot of good players come and go.”

A jovial fellow with a sunny disposition that belies a life peppered with hardship, Bell made a name for himself in the ‘60s as a band leader (and later as a solo artist), but fell into obscurity in the ‘80s.

He wound up in Atlanta for a decade, playing for tips in Atlanta’s Underground district before being (re)discovered by Tim Duffy, a blues fanatic and archivist whose Durham, N.C.-based non-profit Music Maker Relief Foundation locates, records, supports and promotes “true pioneers and forgotten heroes of Southern music.”

Music Maker’s goal is to help these struggling, older artists (many of whom toil in relative poverty with little or no support system) with their day-to-day needs while preserving their contributions to the traditional roots music of America’s South.

Bell personifies the strange dichotomy which still exists between religious and secular soul music when he says he’s a God-fearing man who was “raised in the church,” but who made a conscious decision to never play music there.

“To me,” he reflects, “the blues comes from the church — especially the holiness church where they had tambourines and drums and organs. When they get to playing, you’d think James Brown was in there! They got that church blues.”

“They call it blues, but it’s really a spiritual feeling. All of them had that voice and that feeling: Aretha Franklin, Sam Cooke, B.B. King. But you see, I started playing in the street. I’m the type of musician who don’t want to be wishy-washy. I stay on one side of the fence. If the good Lord turned me around and said ditch the blues, then I’d do it, but I’m strange like that.”

That rather succinct and highly personal summation of the dividing line between darkness and light which some have always viewed as an inherent conundrum —and which most musicologists will tell you has resulted in some of the most cathartic and emotional examples of soul music to be found on either side of the intangible moral fence Bell references— captures the dilemma many Southern performers have long faced: particularly in the black community, where staunch Christian faith is not only famously intertwined with rapturous and exultant music, but where many believers still insist upon strict separation of the blues (often considered sinful and libidinous) and gospel, or sanctified music.

The old notion of the talented musician who plays low-down blues for money or fame on Friday and Saturday nights in the raucous, sexuality and alcohol-charged atmosphere of a club or juke-joint, only to play and sing hymns in church on Sunday is a stereotype for good reason: it’s based on fact. However, there are many old-school musicians who simply refuse to mix those two streams.

Adolphus Bell is one of them.

“To me,” he says with conviction, “if you’re playing the blues and playing in church too, that’s like being a bit of a hypocrite. Out of respect for the supreme being, I’ll only do one or the other, but not both.”

The Blind Boys of Alabama take a similar approach to their legendary brand of worshipful vocal magic. Although they occupy what British tunesmith Nick Lowe might call “the other side of the coin.”

Since 1939, this iconic sightless singing group has entertained and given witness to throngs of adoring fans the world over. Initially playing only to segregated audiences in the Deep South, their almost incomprehensible longevity (they’ve been forced to take on several new members over their seven decade career) has allowed their following to change along with the times.

Now, they routinely share uplifting, fiery performances with all manner of listeners, and as their four Grammys attest, their fairly recent decision to include secular tunes into their repertoire has only expanded their fan base and their influence.

By carefully and sincerely re-interpreting country, soul and even rock and roll tunes into their own style (and for their own purposes), they have given new meaning to the term “crossover artist.”

But don’t think for a minute that because the Blind Boys now cover blues standards like “Nobody’s Fault But Mine”, funk nuggets like Stevie Wonder’s “Higher Ground” (popularized by the Red Hot Chili Peppers) and crepuscular Tom Waits oddballs like “Way Down In The Hole” alongside traditional church tunes such as “Amazing Grace” (sung to the melody of the hooker’s lament “House of The Rising Sun” no less) and “Wade In The Water”, that they still consider themselves anything less than a full-on gospel group.

Vocalist and band leader Jimmy Carter, who has incredibly been there from the start, and — understandably perhaps, given the march of time — is the sole original member left who performs and records with the sextet, makes clear that The Blind Boys of Alabama had a specific goal in mind which led them to seek out secular material — albeit material with a strong, positive message that easily conveys the spiritual truths they are sworn to promote.

That goal? Young people.

Carter says he’s never heard any negative feedback from diehard fans about the Blind Boys adding such subject matter into their albums and concerts, or for welcoming guest musicians not normally thought of as Christian artists (or even particularly religious ones for that matter).

However, he feels that the careful manner in which these diversions from their long-standing M.O. have been incorporated and “gospel-ized” have a great deal to do with the relative ease in which they have been received. (Plus, it doesn’t hurt that of late, this influx of challenging material and high-profile players from outside the traditional church world has resulted in some of the most amazingly beautiful and most successful albums in the group’s career).

“Our fans realize though secular artists might come and be on our records, they’re still playing gospel and we’re still singing gospel,” Carter explains, adding, “The Blind Boys will never deviate from that.”

“Now, it might have a different sound or flavor, but it’s still gospel and still the Blind Boys. Sometimes we might have to change some of the lyrics in our version to make it work as a gospel song, but that’s fine. We’ll always be a traditional gospel group. But now, we have tried to incorporate young people into our music. That’s why we brought in folks like Ben Harper and Aaron Neville and Solomon Burke.”

It would take someone of Carter’s age and stature to refer to the 67-year-old soul shouter Burke as a “young person”, but Carter emphasizes that, “since we brought some of these folks into our music, we are now seeing more young people at our concerts than we ever have before.”

The Blind Boys’ latest album, Down In New Orleans, was released just a few weeks ago, and is earning rave reviews for its unique mixture of the group’s signature vocal harmonies and the Big Easy’s toe-tapping rhythmic pulse — courtesy of guest musicians like iconic pianist/composer Allen Toussaint (“Freedom For The Stallion”), bassist Roland Guerin, fellow time-honored luminaries the Preservation Hall Jazz Band and relative newcomers the Hot 8 Brass Band (who are turning heads with their progressive mix of marching band arrangements, R & B and hip-hop).

“While were there recording, we saw all the devastation,” explains Carter. “And even though we couldn’t actually help rebuild the town, we hoped our music would inspire folks who were already there and those that might want to come help.”

Carter says even though his group and Bell are from the same state, he’s never seen the one-man-band perform, “but I’m looking very forward to sharing a bill with him — as well as returning to Savannah and having some down home Georgia cookin’!”

Bell, too, is eagerly anticipating this date, which follows a short European tour.

“We almost crossed paths in France once,” he recalls. “I wanted to meet ‘em so bad, but they stay on the road so much and I do as well. I’m proud to open for them.”

Carter says the Blind Boys will feature a few N’awlins-style tunes from their new CD, but also wide range of classic material.

“Basically, we’re gonna do what we do best — and that’s good old traditional soul gospel music!”


Come join us on June 5th from 6-9 p.m. at Mary's Cakes & Pastries!

The blues and food have always gone hand in hand and many blues tunes have sung the praises of food - barbecue, cornbread, collard greens, black eyed peas and blueberry scones. Blueberry scones? Yep - and “shortbread, chocolate chip cookies, pizza, toasted pimiento cheese, chocolate iced brownies (they're bound to please).” All these delicious delicatessens, plus custom-made cakes from a bakery in downtown Northport, Alabama, have inspired a blues song entitled “Mary’s Cakes," written by Alabama Blues Project co-directors Debbie Bond and Rick Asherson.

On April 4th, the Alabama Blues Project and Mary's Cakes & Pastries teamed up for the first Mary's Cakes Blues Café & Street Party. The event featured live music by Debbie Bond & The Crème Brûlées (Rick Asherson, J.K. Terrell, Chris Ballard, Steve Black and Gary Edmonds), and it was the CD single release of "Mary's Cakes." Proceeds of the CD sales benefit the Alabama Blues Project, and the song may also be downloaded from our online store.

In the spirit of blues music and tasty treats, the Blues Café & Street Party featured a Cakewalk! The goal of the Alabama Blues Project is to preserve the rich tradition of blues music in Alabama, and what better way to bring it to a party! A Cakewalk is a traditional African American form of music and dance which originated among slaves in the Southern United States. Slave holders sometimes held competitions, in which they offered slices of hoecake as prizes for the best dancers. It has since evolved from a parody of ballroom dancing to a "fun fair" like dance where participants dance in a circle in the hopes of winning a free cake. At our first Mary's Cakes Blues Café & Street Party cakewalk competition there were too many great dancers to choose from, so everyone got a piece of the cake!

The Blues Café & Street Party was such as hit that we are planning to make it a monthly occurrence. It is becoming part of the celebration called Art Night that takes place in Tuscaloosa and Downtown Historic Northport on the first Thursday of every month. At the next Blues Café & Street Party, the Alabama Blues Project and Mary's Cakes & Pastries will team up with Ann Foster (Brushtrokes by Ann Foster) to integrate art activities for children and feature an art show!

The Crème Brûlées "Mary's Cakes" recording was performed by the Alabama Blues Project's very own: Rick Asherson (vocals, keyboard, harmonica), Debbie Bond (guitar, backup vocals), Gary Edmonds (guitar, backup vocals), Jason Hilley (bass, backup vocals), and Jesse Suttle (drums, backup vocals).

- Photos by Jerry Henry

About Mary’s Cakes:
Mary's Cakes & Pastries, LLC ( offers unique wedding cakes, grooms cakes, and celebration cakes, baked fresh in historic downtown Northport. Mary's Cakes makes gelato, cookies and pastries, serves a light lunch daily, and has a beautiful garden room available for private functions up to 40 guests. Mary’s Cakes also offers workshops showcasing the artistic side of the pastry craft.




The Alabama Music Hall Of Fame has partnered with BluzKat/Pawz for Music
for a special harmonica jam workshop for children ages 8-12.
This event will be held on Saturday, May 10, 2008 at the AMHOF from 10:00-12:30 .


This special workshop includes:

  • Admission to the AMHOF museum located in Tuscumbia
  • Tour of the museum
  • The official unveiling of Alabama ’s own American Idol Winner Taylor Hicks’ exhibit
  • Featuring specialized instruction by the “Shelby Harmonica Players” from Alabama
  • A special jam session with the Instructors playing the song they just learned
  • A celebration cake and refreshments after the workshop

Each child will receive a special drawstring back sack filled with:

  • A Hohner harmonica with case
  • Specially designed instruction book featuring BluzKat and friends
  • A surprise gift from Taylor Hicks

There will be drawings for special prizes including autographed CDs from
Taylor Hicks and an autographed poster of this special event.

Space is limited for BluzKat’s Harmonica Jam and will fill up fast!

To register go to WWW.PAWZFORMUSIC.ORG and click on EVENTS tab.

You can also sign up for this workshop by contacting the AMHOF 1-800-239-2643

“Learn to inspire, Live for the music” ~Bluzkat


Our 2008 Evening of Art & Blues will be September 5th!

The annual Evening of Art & Blues is our biggest fundraiser and we are already collecting items for our art auction and seeking sponsors for the event.
We have had an extraordinary lineup of items in the past,
and we appreciate all the support we can get!
We are willing to split proceeds and will give you great publicity!

Click here to see a list of 2007 Donors!

Click here for Photos of the 2007 Evening of Art & Blues!




8 1/4 Feet Long, 4 3/4 Feet Wide
A little over 4 1/2 Feet Tall
New Tires - Hasn't been used in 5 Years
Spare Tire & New flooring inside!
Pictured on Sam Lay's Album Rush Hour Blues
Comes As Is with Specialized Writing

Also for sale:
1988 Baldwin Electric Piano
Polished Brass Tag says
"Legendary Sam Lay"
Wooden Frame & Benches
Never Been Used - In the Box!


Call the ABP at (205) 752-6263


Our programs are made possible by the generous support of our sponsors, including Children’s Trust Fund of Alabama, National Endowment for the Arts, Alabama State Council on the Arts, Mercedes Benz, Hohner, Alligator Records, Bonnie Raitt, First United Methodist Church, Covenant Presbyterian Church, Nick's Kids Fund, db Tech, Guitar Center Music Foundation, Harrison Galleries, Little Willie’s Jazz & Blues Club, Pollack Foundation, Tuscaloosa Consortium for Higher Education, United Way of West Alabama, Zildjian, and many other kind organizations and individuals.