Tuesday, March 19, 2013

6 years? My, how time flies!

I let it slip by without saying much about it, but March 17, 2013 was the sixth anniversary of the Kevin Waide Project's first show at 363 Blues Club in Saltillo, MS. We will be celebrating 6 years of the Project at 308 Blues Club & Café in Indianola, MS this Saturday, March 23, 2013, so if you're in the area, come on out for the celebration. It's at 308 Depot Ave. in Indianola, about half a block from the B.B. King Museum.

On March 10, 2007, I was asked by my good friends Will and Erin Bristow if I could have a band ready for the following Saturday. The club had booked Super Chikan for St. Patrick's Day that year, but his management hadn't confirmed the date-and he was scheduled for some shows in Europe the week before-so they asked me to be on Stand-By, just in case.

I called up my old friend and previous band mate, Chris Fooshee, to see if he would like to do one show, and he said yes. I had also just met Jimmy Karow, a country bass player originally from Kenosha, Wisconsin, and we had been talking music for a few months at the time. When asked if he would be interested in doing a blues gig, his answer was, "Sure, why not." So, now I had a 3 piece band ready to do the show, and I informed Will and Erin that we were on stand by.

Wednesday, March 14, Will called and said Super Chikan's management called and he would not be performing, so if we could do the show, it was ours. I called Jim and Foosh and we scheduled a practice for the following evening. We ran through a few of my originals and a few covers and decided that we were gonna be OK for one show.

I had only been singing for a year or so, and my voice wasn't strong enough to carry an entire evening, so on Saturday morning, I called Skip Oliver and Mark Coward and invited them out to sit in with us, and they both accepted. I now had a 5 piece band willing to play for the evening with no guarantee on pay!

The show that night was a huge success, with attendance breaking fire code! Everything with the guys just clicked, and out of that show, we were asked to play the B-Town BBQ Festival in Baldwyn, MS the following June, and the Okeelala Festival in Baldwyn that October. Shows kept coming up, and Skip, Jim, and Foosh were up for anything as long as we were making money, and the Project was born.

We've had a few lineup changes over the years, with Jason Carter joining the band March 6, 2010 (a year to the day after Foosh's motorcycle wreck), Jimmy going part-time in June, 2010, and Skip leaving to pursue his own career in June, 2011, but we're still going strong. We have a few different bass players at the ready for each show (Tom Sewell, Jay Carroll, Michael Brose, Gavin McGee, Chuck McArthur, Brian West), guitar players (Blayze Windham, Mark Coward), drummers (Elijah Waide, Cameron Kimbrough, Joseph Lackey, Derrick Young), "outside" songwriters (Michael Waide, Helmuth Cote), and a close working relationship with amp guru Rick Moreland of Moreland Amplification. Each year, our gig radius grows. We've had songs played on radio in Europe and played a large number of Blues Festivals around the state. We've gotten to jam with many of our "idols" (Lightnin' Malcolm, Kenny Brown, Richard Johnston, Eden Brent). We've made new friends all over, and are having more fun than we've ever had, and that's because of you guys (and gals).

Thank you all for supporting us, and we look forward to another 6 years, and another 6 years after that. We'll see you on the road.