Six bodacious women tear up the stage in a celebration of blues and blueswomen in Pamela Rose’s Blues is a Woman: From Ma Rainey to Bonnie Raitt on Saturday, May 25, at Rhythmix Cultural Works.

Alameda Post - women perform onstage in Blues is a Woman
Blues is a Woman. Photo courtesy Rhythmix Cultural Works.

Pamela Rose, Pat Wilder, Daria Johnson, Ruth Davies, Jennifer Jolly, and Kristen Strom are featured in the presentation, which blurs the boundaries between concert and theater, using storytelling and music to bring to life the colorful history of the bold and singular women who wrote and popularized the blues.

Some of the names are well known—Nina Simone, Aretha Franklin, Janis Joplin. Other names should be—Ma Rainey, Ida Cox, Memphis Minnie, and many more. Their voices are vibrant, challenging, inspirational, and dynamic. Blues is a Woman seeks to ensure that these women, their histories, and their message will be remembered and celebrated.

Cy Musiker of KQED called it, “A mix of performance and history, with a crackerjack all-woman band, making the case that women powered the development of the blues from Alberta Hunter to Janis Joplin.”

Tim Jackson, of Kuumbwa Jazz Center and Monterey Jazz Festival, said, “Pamela and crew created a magical show that was fun, educational and kick-ass. The whole program was well-conceived and had just the right musicians to execute the overall vision. The audience loved it!”

About the Artists

Pamela Rose, Author/Vocalist: A San Francisco jazz and blues vocalist who has thrilled local and international audiences for decades with her swinging, soulful style, Rose has performed at clubs and jazz and blues festivals throughout the United States, Germany, and Denmark.

Pat Wilder, Guitars/Vocals: Also a San Franciscan, Wilder has spent the past 30 years working as guitarist in a series of funk, rock, and blues bands around the Bay Area, including stints with keyboardist Billy Dunn and singers Curtis Lawson, Zakiya Hooker, Jimmy McCracklin, and Luther Tucker.

Ruth Davies, Bass: Oakland resident Davies has lent her fluid, expressive upright bass stylings to many internationally touring artists. Jazz and blues stars such as Charles Brown, Bonnie Raitt, Clark Terry, Elvin Bishop, and Van Morrison are among her long list of tour and recording credentials. Her impressive discography includes many platinum and Grammy-winning recordings.

Kristen Strom, Saxophone/Vocals: Bay Area native Strom has performed with Manhattan Transfer, Roberta Flack, John Mathis, the San Jose Symphony, Natalie Cole, the Temptations, the Four Tops, and Beach Blanket Babylon. She has toured extensively in the United States, Canada, Europe, and Asia, and she headlined at the 2015 Monterey Jazz Festival with her critically lauded group Crossing Borders.

Daria “Shani” Johnson, Drummer / Vocals: Johnson is a San Francisco-based drummer, singer, and multi-instrumentalist with a smooth, sensual style and dynamic spirit on stage. She has become one of the most sought-after drummers in the Bay Area. After graduating from the Berklee College of Music, she fronted her own band, London Street, which toured in the United States and Europe, opening for major acts India Airie, Erykah Badu, Brandi Carlisle, and John Legend, among others.

Tickets

Don’t miss this exciting one-night presentation on Saturday, May 25, 7 p.m., Rhythmix Cultural Works, 2513 Blanding Avenue. Tickets may be purchased online: $30 for general admission or $50 for VIP seating.





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