Color Your World Blue at Navasota Blues Fest

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Navasota Blues Fest will be held August 10-11 at the Grimes County Expo Center.“There’s a lot of shades of blues,” muses Texas Johnny Boy, who will bring his own distinctive shade to this year’s Navasota Blues Fest. “There isn’t just one color of blues, there are endless shades and [the festival] is going to have a bunch of it,” he says, looking forward to his third return to this annual August celebration of the musical art form.

Texas Johnny Boy, also known as John Moschioni, is a seasoned blues veteran and self-proclaimed “bluesician.”

 “When you’ve played at several festivals all around the country, you have a pretty good scope about what festivals are like,” says Moschioni. “I think the Navasoata Blues Festival is wide open for a tremendous amount of growth.”

If the name Mance Lipscomb isn’t familiar to you before the Blues Fest, it will be after you’ve sat among the long tables at the Expo Center in Navasota where people will be relaxing, munching on food, and soaking up every shade of blues in the musical rainbow.

Navasota Blues Fest will be held August 10-11 at the Grimes County Expo Center.“There’s a lot of shades of blues,” muses Texas Johnny Boy, who will bring his own distinctive shade to this year’s Navasota Blues Fest. “There isn’t just one color of blues, there are endless shades and [the festival] is going to have a bunch of it,” he says, looking forward to his third return to this annual August celebration of the musical art form.

Texas Johnny Boy, also known as John Moschioni, is a seasoned blues veteran and self-proclaimed “bluesician.”

 “When you’ve played at several festivals all around the country, you have a pretty good scope about what festivals are like,” says Moschioni. “I think the Navasoata Blues Festival is wide open for a tremendous amount of growth.”

If the name Mance Lipscomb isn’t familiar to you before the Blues Fest, it will be after you’ve sat among the long tables at the Expo Center in Navasota where people will be relaxing, munching on food, and soaking up every shade of blues in the musical rainbow. Lipscomb grew up in the Navasota area and became a well-known songster. The goal of the festival is to keep Lipscomb’s name – and his blues legacy – alive. The festival also raises the funds to present a scholorship in Lipscomb’s name to a Navasota high school graduate each year. This year’s scholarship winner, Stephen Jefferson, plans to study pre-med at Texas State University.

The festival also keeps bringing new audiences to the artists who perform live at the event, a subject close to Texas Johnny Boy’s blue-tinged heart. “I’m all for keeping the blues alive. That’s what I do for a living,” says Moschioni. “I think that most of the younger generation is clueless about what blues music is. I think that if they have an open mind about it, they could enjoy some genres of music from another generation.” You can hear for yourself when Texas Johnny Boy belts out some old-school rythym and blues Saturday, August 11, beginning at 7:30 p.m. “Theres a lot more to blues than the form,” Moschioni. “It comes with attitude, it comes with delivery, it comes with dialect.” 

IF YOU GO

The festival kicks off on Friday, August 10, with blues music from 7:30 p.m. to midnight. Tickets are $15, and doors open at 5:30 p.m. Early goers can enjoy the cocktail hour with musicians from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. Half-price beer, free snacks, and discounted food will be offered during this hour, as well as music from Michael Birnbaum and Melissa Bailey. The Blues Brothers tribute band, Sweet Mama Cotton and the Sugar Daddies, and Don Kesee and the Bluesmasters will all make appearances.

 The event continues on Saturday, August 11, and starts off with a free guitar session with Michael Birnbaum at 10 a.m. Doors officially open at 1 p.m. with music from 1:30 p.m. to midnight. Tickets are $25. Returning this year are Texas Johnny Boy, Blind Orange Jefferson, Texas Johnny Brown and the Quality Blues Band, and Steve Howell Trio. New this year are Patrick McLaughlin, Lincoln Durham, and Tha Lady D.

All events are held in the Grimes County Expo Center’s air-conditioned, no smoking hall in Navasota at 5280 FM 3455. RV hookups are on-site and refreshments including barbecue, fried catfish, baked potatoes, beer, soda and more are available.

Discounted advance tickets for both days are available for $30. For more information, call (936) 825-6600 or visit www.navasotabluesfest.org.