Boise Blues coming to Bayfront and Bev's
Born and raised in Boise, Idaho, blues musician John N?meth grew up in a town where blues music wasn't quite as famous as potatoes. He seemed like an outcast in that blues music was quite absent from the capital's music scene.
Born and raised in Boise, Idaho, blues musician John Németh grew up in a town where blues music wasn't quite as famous as potatoes. He seemed like an outcast in that blues music was quite absent from the capital's music scene.
"I was one of the only people that knew blues," Németh said. "I had to teach a lot of people [about blues] in Boise and in the state."
The 31-year-old Németh first began playing in high school with a band known as Fat John and the Three Slims. With this band, he was first introduced to the harmonica and has made it his instrument of choice ever since.
"At the time, it was the cheapest [instrument] available so it worked for me," Németh said.
The absence of blues in Boise gave Nemeth an opportunity to improve his talents and to have a multitude of venues to perform at.
"I could pretty much do whatever and make it work in Boise," Németh said.
After high school, Németh then began working with a band known as the Frim Fram Four. The band modeled themselves very closely to the Nat King Cole Trio and would actually cover a number of the band's songs.
All the while as Németh experimented with different bands, he kept his solo career going and in 2000 he began to tour with blues guitarist Junior Watson. After meeting up with Watson, Németh's career took off.
"The rest is sweet history," Németh said.
Throughout the next four years, he would leave Boise and move to San Francisco where he released his first two albums "The Jack of Harps" in 2002 and "Come and Get It" in 2004.
Németh also began to play numerous music festivals in places all over the United States. Just last month at the world's largest jazz festival, the Montreal Jazz Fest in Montreal, Canada, he received the pick of the day award as the best musician for one day of the 11-day festival.
Németh will be making another trip to a big blues festival as he will be performing tomorrow at the 20th annual Bayfront Blues Festival in Duluth. He will play Sunday afternoon from 1:45 to 2:45 p.m. on the Premium Beer Stage. Later in the evening, he will be taking his act over the bridge as he will play at 9 p.m. at Bev's Jook Joint in Superior.
The album that Németh has been touring for "Magic Touch," the third album he has released. His first two albums were self-released but "Magic Touch" is under the record label Blind Pig Records. Being that he is now under a record label, Németh says the big difference with this album is that the sounds are more professional sounding. The album was recorded in Austin, Texas with the help of the Texas Horns. It has received a number of good reviews to go along with a few award nominations for Németh.
He has been nominated for two 2008 Blues Blast Music Award nominations. He was nominated for the awards "Best New Artist" and the "Sean Costello Rising Star Award."
Németh clearly has solidified himself as one of the rising stars in blues music today and will continue to do what he loves; play music.
"I live every day to play records, jam with friends and just play the music," Németh said. "I'm always biding time just until I get to play."
The next album that Németh will be featured on will not be his own, but it will highlight many prominent blues artists. "The Blues Rolls On" will be released on Sept. 23 and will include artists such as Elvin Bishop, B.B. King, Warren Haynes, Derek Trucks and George Thorogood. Németh sings on three of the tracks and plays harmonica on another.
Dan Tracy is starting his senior year in the fall at Superior High School. He was co-editor-in-chief of the Spartan Spin last year and is interning at the Daily Telegram this summer. He may be reached at (715) 395-5078.