River City Ohio Blues Competition seeks acts

File Photo Roadhouse Redeemed performed during last year’s River City Blues Competition in Marietta. This year’s event will be Feb. 16-17 at the Lafayette Hotel.

MARIETTA — The Blues, Jazz and Folk Music Society will host its 26th annual River City Ohio Blues Competition in February and is seeking local and regional blues acts to vie for the chance to perform in an international blues competition.

The deadline to apply to enter as a blues band or solo/duo act is Jan. 12, 2018. Apply to participate in River City Blues Competition by going to the website bjfm.org and click on Competition. Links to the rules and application can be found on that page.

The blues competition will be Feb. 16-17, 2018, at the Lafayette Hotel in downtown Marietta. The winner will compete for cash prizes and BJFMS sponsorship to the International Blues Challenge in 2019 in Memphis, Tenn.

The cash prizes are $1,000 for first, $500 for second and $300 for third. The winner will also receive an additional $500 when they register for the IBC competition. If second or third place also qualify to go to Memphis on the BJFM Stage, they will also receive an additional $500 when they register for the challenge, officials said.

The River City Ohio Blues Competition is the oldest and largest blues talent competition in Ohio, with 12 competition slots to be filled by local and regional blues acts from all over Ohio, West Virginia, Pennsylvania, Michigan and other states.

File Photo Taking second place at last year’s River City Blues Competition was L’il Red and Rooster from France and Columbus, Ohio.

The 2017 River City Ohio Blues Competition winners were the Gough-Martin Blues Band from South Union, Ky., while L’il Red and Rooster from Columbus received second place.

The IBC represents an international search by The Blues Foundation and its affiliated organizations for the blues band and blues solo/duo most deserving of taking their act to the international stage. Competing artists can gain valuable exposure to record label representatives and blues industry professionals and festival promoters capable of real career advancement for a serious blues musician, organizers said.

As it has for the past several years, the Marietta competition will be a two-day event. Instead of bands competing Friday night, the weekend will begin with a pre-competition party on Friday from 8-11 p.m. The performers will be Danny Franchi at 8 p.m. while Souliz with Sugar and Spice will perform at 9:30 p.m.

On Saturday, the competition will be noon-6 p.m. with a dinner break from 6-8 p.m. The winning acts going to the IBC will perform at 8 p.m. followed by a performance at 9:30 p.m. by the Mike Wheeler Band.

Doors open one hour before show time. For those wishing to attend the blues competition, tickets are $20 for BJFMS members and $25 for non-members for the Friday night show, $20 for members and $25 for non-members for the Saturday afternoon competition and $20 for members and $25 for non-members for the Saturday night performances. Weekend passes are $55 for members and $70 for non-members.

File Photo Among the groups performing at last year’s River City Blues Competition was Deuce ‘n a Quarter from Columbus, Ohio.

For ticket information, call Helen at 304-615-7997 or Peggy at 740-376-0222.

The blues competition is a precursor to the 27th annual River City Blues Festival in March at the Lafayette Hotel. This year’s festival will include performances by a variety of regional and national blues performers.

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