Singin' the blues has never felt so good: On Sept. 6 and 7, the annual San Diego Blues Festival takes over Embarcadero Marina Park North, with all proceeds going to benefit the Jacobs & Cushman San Diego Food Bank.
With an outstanding lineup -- which includes Eric Burdon & the Animals, Elvin Bishop, Tommy Castro & the Painkillers, Earl Thomas & the Rhumboogies, John Primer and the Candye Kane Band, among others -- you can sit back and enjoy the show knowing you've helped someone else along the way.
The festival serves as a major fundraiser for the food bank, which distributes food to 330 nonprofit partners, including pantries, soup kitchens, shelters, low-income day care centers, senior centers, churches, schools and others. To date, festival goers have contributed nearly 10 tons of food and more than $225,000 to help fight hunger in San Diego County. Not bad for a couple of fun days out on the waterfront with some killer blues.
Eric Burdon & the Animals headline this year's two-day event, and with good reason. Known for massive hit singles such as "House of the Rising Sun," "We Gotta Get Out of This Place," "It's My Life" and "I'm Crying," the band got their start in 1962 by covering songs by blues legends Jimmy Reed, John Lee Hooker, Nina Simone and others. We're thrilled to hear what the current incarnation of the band has in store for us on Sunday.
Similarly, world-renowned guitarist (and co-headliner) Elvin Bishop got an early start playing the blues. In 1963, he met and joined Paul Butterfield's Blues Band, in which he played for five years before branching out and forming the Elvin Bishop Group. He's played with John Lee Hooker, Bo Diddley, Mike Bloomfield, the Allman Brothers Band and the Grateful Dead. His most memorable single was 1976's "Fooled Around and Fell in Love," which peaked at number three on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 chart. We're lookin' to fall in love all over again come Saturday, Sept. 6, when he takes the stage at 6:45 p.m.
With a host of stellar acts and an opportunity to help those in need, the San Diego Blues Festival is a win-win event. Get out, sing them blues -- and do some good.