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STEVE ARVEY BAND
- BIOGRAPHY Chicago blues - returning to the UK
Movinmusic is taking offers for 2011 dates for Steve Arvey. Interested venue owners/promoters can contact us about his availability via e-mail or 0044 (0)1209 860067.
2005 saw the release of the brand new live Steve Arvey and BluesMove CD – Live at the Blues of the Month Club. Now available to purchase from this site this CD was recorded in Cleethorpes, the album features: Steve Arvey, virtuoso bass player Roger Inniss, Jools Grudgings on keyboards, Mike Hellier on drums and special guest Mark Hoekstra who flew in especially from Chicago to participate in the recording. Three Realaudio tracks from the album and purchase details can now be found on this page here.
The Song "Cold Wind from Chicago" Written by Steve Arvey and Dr Vilardo will be appearing
on the 2005 East Coast Blues & Roots Fest CD released by Warner Music Australia. This CD will
be released at the Byron Bay Blues Festival March 22nd and will be available at all music stores
in Australia. This 40 song CD will have songs by REM, George Thorogood, Bo Diddley,
George Clinton and Funkadelic, Violent Femmes and Janus Ian.
I SUPPOSE you could call Chicago’s Steve Arvey a blues musician, you could call a cat a dog if you like. In truth he’s more a force of nature, a force that the basement of Barrels, Berwick on Tweed struggled, and at times failed, to contain. The cocktail of blues/rock and even some ‘home-grown’ country left the audience punch drunk but thirsty for more. Some people play music and look like accountants, some look like they were born to play. Click here to read more ...
I started playing Music seriously when I was 18 years old. While in college in
Gainesville Florida I met John Vilardo who was the first person that I ever
jammed with. At that same period I had a new roomate by the name of Ben
Andrews. Ben was a country blues ragtime guitarist from Washington, DC. Ben
turned me on to the great country bluesmen like Charley Patton, Robert
Johnson, Bukka White, and Leadbelly just to name a few. When I first heard
Leadbelly it seemed my whole life changed. Ben really was my first big
influence into the blues. He showed me how to fingerpick and got me into
playing bass. Another person from Gainesville and an early influence was
Barrelhouse Chuck. Chuck had a large record collection and was playing in the
Robert Hunter Blues Band. Robert Hunter was a blind saxophone player who had
worked with Bobby "Blue" Bland in the sixties. Eventually Chuck
moved out to Seattle and Ben and I formed another band to back up Robert
Hunter. The same year Bo Diddley moved to Gainesville from New Mexico and the
Robert Hunter Band ended up backing Bo Diddley.
Arvey eventually returned to Chicago, where he worked as a sideman on the
Chicago Blues scene playing bass guitar, guitar, and drums behind such Blues
Legends as Hubert Sumlin, Jimmy Rogers, Big Smokey Smothers, Homesick James,
Andrew Brown, Lefty Dizz, Big Moose Walker, BB Big Voice Odum, Detroit Jr,
Lovie Lee, Carey Bell, Big Jack Johnson, Sam Carr, Frank Frost, Lester
Davenport. Eddie Taylor, Sam Lay, Eddie Clearwater, Sugar Blue, Abb Locke, Hip
Linkchain, Sammy Lawhorn, Jr Wells, Sammy Fender and others.
Then Arvey formed a band called West Side Heat and Released his first
Album. The band was very active between 1981-1991 and toured all over the
world, sometimes backing up Notable blues artists. The Highlight of the Group
was their Performance on The Crossroads Stage at the 1990 Chicago Blues
I guess I just got burned out on that after a while, and shortly after the
band quit, I started up with Kraig, Arvey said. We would basically go and play
acoustic sets all day at Blues Fest, and on the streets.
In that time period, Arvey was also approached by the publicists for the
Irish beer, Harp Lager. And while he had never performed Irish music, he took
the opportunity to perform for them.
It was sort of unfortunate at first, because they told me they didn't
really want someone to play Irish ballads and slow songs, and I had told them
I didn't play Irish music, Arvey said. But then when I showed up at the clubs
they sent me to, the people were shocked, and wondered where the Irish band
So I went to the Old Town School of Folk Music, and totally immersed myself
in everything I could. I found all these folk guys, like (Tommy) Makem and
Tommy Clancy, and I really fell in love with it. Steve spent two years
performing Blues, Rock, and Irish music, sponsored by Harp, at almost 150
dates a year at clubs throughout the Chicagoland area.
Steve is again playing the Blues, and Blues/Rock music regularly around the