(Fresno, CA) – The Central Valley Blues Society (CVBS) is celebrating 15 years of supporting the blues. Their extensive blues calendar covers Bakersfield to Sacramento, the Central San Joaquin Valley, Central Coast, Sierra Mountain Range and the Bay Area of California. On Friday, March 31 they’re throwing an anniversary party at Fulton 55 (875 Divisadero St., Fresno, CA) featuring The Daniel Castro Band, Mike Hammar & the Nails, Glen Delpit & the Subterraneans and The Lucky Lopez Band. Doors open at 7pm. Tickets are $20 in advance and $25 at the door.
The CVBS original mission to share the blues started in Fresno, California. They hoped to venture up north and south but they never imagined their mission to help keep the blues alive would spread so far and wide. Then took a unique approach in the beginning deciding to be a virtual blues society. No membership fees, just 100% support of the blues all by volunteers.
They started collecting names and email addresses for an email blog at a Rod Piazza show in Fresno. Soon they were approached by Hal Kent of Kent Software Development (also a badass blues guitarist), who offered to build a website for them and who has updated it weekly ever since. Marc Blake (Swords of Creation) came along and created their URL and hosted it free of charge. The CVBS Blues Calendar, Artist, Venue, Radio and Archive pages have more blues information than any other website most have ever went on.
Their newsletter started out as a weekly email and a monthly snail mail publication. As more people got email, they abandoned the snail mail as they just didn’t have the funds to continue. With the onset of social media they changed from a weekly newsletter to a monthly. They just sent out issue #641!
CVBS has promoted some of their own shows and festivals over the years but are more interested in supporting what other promoters and venues are doing. When they do promote their own shows, they have a large cast of artists they like to call the CVBS All-stars who always come through. Everyone involved with the CVBS does what they do best out of their love for the blues. They go to festivals, concerts and street fairs trying to get the word out.
The website has become an amazing tool for artists, venues and fans. It’s one place where they can all find each other. The 15 years of archives is a great source of information that helps artists book future gigs. CVBS hopes to keep building their membership and offer more artists places to play. As everyone knows, you can’t stop talking about the struggle blues artists have filling venues from coast to coast. CVBS is just trying to do their part to keep the blues alive!
Special thanks goes out to Don and Susan Heflin, Hal Kent, Marc Blake, Lynn Sargenti, and all the CVBS dedicated volunteers that have made the past 15 years possible.
You can find lots more info and lots of shows at the CVBS website so please check it out and please share freely.