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Paul Speidel - Gratitude

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Guitarist, composer, educator and producer Paul Speidel has been a prominent beacon in Boston's extensive blues/jazz music scene for more than two decades--in fact--2014 is The Paul Speidel Band's 20th Anniversary Year . . . and that's no small achievement. Guitarists come and go all the time in Boston--a city of major-league music schools--but Paul belongs to that small group of top players who've dug in their heels here and insist on keeping blues and jazz, in their various permutations, vital and probing for the long haul. In 2004, Speidel released his first CD, The Paul Speidel Band. That disc was followed in 2005 with Guitar Bass Drums (Live, Vol. 1). In 2009 he and his band release Playing Stages (Live, Vol. 2) and in 2010 his latest release, Retrorocket (Blues Extensions, Vol. 2) received three-and-a-half stars in Downbeat Magazine. His recordings have been heard on WZLX FM, WBRS FM, WMBR FM and WICN FM and they have received sterling reviews. In 2006 and 2008 Paul was a semi-finalist in the Boston Blues Challenge, an annual event put together by the Boston Blues Society. For a musician who cares deeply about great American roots music, the big bluesy town of Chicago was the ideal place for fledging guitarist Paul to grow up in the 1970s. He heard blues on local radio stations and experienced gritty local blues first hand. One special encounter was a concert at his high school by Lonnie 'Guitar Junior' Brooks, a Louisianian who had mastered the world-famous Chicago blues style after moving to the Windy City in the early 1960s. Another stellar real-deal blues guitarist Paul looked up to was former drummer Frank 'Son' Seals, whose dirty tone and riffs torched many a South Side tavern and reached a global audience through Alligator Records. Like many other teenagers studying guitar, Paul immersed himself in the blues-rock stylings of Jimmy Page, Jeff Beck and their peers. He also listened hard to the jazz-rock innovations of trumpeter Miles Davis with and without guitar whiz John McLaughlin. Shaping his musical sensibility further through formal music studies of various styles, Paul began working a wide variety of paying gigs. Then, after kicking around in a few bands and a stint in the Denver-area music scene, Paul moved to Boston in 1990, where his career took flight. Paul established himself on the Boston music scene as host of two weekly Blues Jams and the Blues Showcase Series in Newton which he founded and which ran for five years. The showcase brought major local and nationally-known talent to Newton such as Jay Geils, Duke Robillard, James Montgomery and Shirley Lewis. As a valued performer on stage with such blues luminaries as Duke Robillard, Toni Lynn Washington, David Maxwell, Michelle Wilson, Weepin' Willie, Howard Alden and many others, Paul has also performed with his own Paul Speidel Band--entertaining thousands--at the many well-known Boston area venues like Ryles Jazz Club, Johnny D's, Harper's Ferry, Tam O'Shanter, Plough and Stars, Bull Run, The Milky Way, Tommy Doyles, The Kinsale, The Regent Theatre, Precinct, Harper's Ferry, Willow Jazz Club, Kirkland Cafe, Midway Cafe, 1369 Jazz Club, Bob The Chef's, The Attic and many other historic clubs, coffeehouses, concerts and festivals throughout New England with side trips to Denver and Chicago. Paul's band has also opened for Gibson Signature Artist Johnny A, for John Lee Hooker, Jr. at the Nashoba Valley Blues-N-Brews Festival and for the great Luther 'Guitar Junior' Johnson.

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1) Taking It Home
2) A Swing Celebration
3) Gratitude
4) Digging in Deeper
5) Buddy Comes Calling

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Gratitude | Paul Speidel