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On the road in Nice with Lisa Chavous and the Philadelphia Blues Messengers

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Lisa Chavous and the Philadelphia Blues Messengers not only rocked the house but brought le chez down and had people up and moving as they transmitted the Philadelphia brand of Blues to Europe in the countries of France and Monaco. This international tour brought goodwill in the universal language of music that transcends all cultures.

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The sultry vocals and moves of Lisa Chavous, the deep tones of Larry Hembrecht’s blues harmonica as Elliott Levin made his saxophone speak to the audience as they sprang to their feet. Tom Gittleman brought the blues home as his unique style came through his bass guitar while Pete Currie rhythmically drummed the blues into the hearts of the audience of Monaco and France. Kevin Joella’s brilliance came through the dreamy way he played his guitar and Bob Tokonitz brought the magnificent feelings of New Orleans blues through his trombone. Philly math teacher Mike Albrecht brought magic to the strings of his guitar and the amazing musical talents of Jim Levy whose fingers flew up and down the keyboards while he was taking videos from the stage of Lisa working the crowd.

Grooving to the tunes in the audience at the B Spot in Nice, France was retiring US Consul, Janet Ruiz as well as French and US Diplomats. Also, enjoying the scene were Marion Curlin and other Nice citizens who are advocating to keep the US Embassy open. In attendance from Essex, England was David Nathan from the National Jazz Archives in the United Kingdom. After screams of more, more, more from the crowd Lisa Chavous closed out the evening with her signature tune, I Don’t Want to Make Love to Your Man.

Then the band was on to the beautiful country of Monaco. Near the castle where Princess Grace, from Philadelphia lived, Lisa Chavous and the Philadelphia Blues Messengers sang and played at Le M.Gilles de Le Brasserie to a standing room only crowd and left them dancing on top of the tables.

These engagements were arranged by Larry Hembrecht with Doc Curlin of France to foster an international partnership through One People, One World, One Blues, one of the Blues Messengers featured songs. Also, through the inspiration of mentor and famed musician the late Byard Lancaster of Philadelphia made this tour possible. We must not leave out Mike Hayes who works behind the scenes. Also, a shout out to the wives and significant others who provide support like Donna and Marian.

Blues tells a story not just from the heart but deep down in the soul and Lisa Chavous and the Philadelphia Blues Messengers can do that like no other. I had the distinct pleasure to travel through France and Monaco with this incredible band in a trip of a life time that I will never forget. If you want to rock and groove with Lisa and the Blues Messengers you can see them at their upcoming gigs in Philadelphia at the Headhouse on January 11 and at the Twisted Tale on February 7, 2014. To book them for an event or to find out more about Lisa Chavous and the Philadelphia Blues Messengers click on



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