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Tom 'Papa' Ray

I recently had the honor of joining the rhythm & blues-rock band Vintage Trouble for a run of 13 shows in September and October. Instead of co-billing with another group, the members preferred to have me, the Soul Selector, open the concerts with a potent, all-vinyl mix of blues and soul while chatting up the audience. A member of the band even personally introduced me at every stop.

When Lou Edward Thimes spoke on the radio and intoned "Fatha, Fatha, Fatha," it was an adult thing: women listeners approved, and the male ones would nod in agreement: they knew when listening to Fatha Thimes, the music would be top-notch soul/rhythm and blues, selected and voiced by one of the most identifiable talents on St. Louis airwaves.

The great blues singer Robert Calvin Bland, known throughout the blues world as Bobby "Blue" Bland, had indeed, as the St. Louis Jimmy standard stated, been going down slow for sometime, yet was regularly performing in his final year of life until a very short while ago. His death at home on June 22, 2013 near Memphis ended the career of an extraordinarily beloved and long-running legend in blues music.

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Karate Bikini - A Simpler Sugar

Wed November 26
Karate Bikini is an eight piece ensemble who's members hail from St. Louis and the metro area. They are a large band with a large sound. Their latest album A Simpler Sugar is full of upbeat pop songs,…