(CHARLOTTE, NC) Five years ago, when Rick Booth’s Charlotte-based blues booking agency Intrepid Artists International celebrated its 20th anniversary, he wasn’t sure what to expect. He was tentative when he rolled up to Neighborhood Theatre in a limo that night.
“I’m praying that somebody’s in there,” the Charlotte native recalls, sitting in his office overlooking Kings Drive. He needn’t have worried. “The place was packed with my buddies from high school and college. It was an epic night.”
Given the success of Intrepid’s 20th, Booth is upping his game for the agency’s 25th anniversary with two nights of live music from many of the musicians on Intrepid’s roster.
Night One of “A Rock n’ Roll, Soul, & Blues Revival…The Sequel” takes place Friday at Amos’ Southend (1423 S. Tryon St.), with Asheville’s Empire Strikes Brass, blues saxophonist Vanessa Collier, Chicago’s Steepwater Band, and New York electric blues vet the Albert Castiglia Band and Friends. Those “friends” include other artists Interpid represents, including Mike Zito, Eric Gales, Kenny Neal, Gary Hoey, Toronzo Cannon and Jimmy Carpenter.
Night Two takes place at Neighborhood Theatre (511 E. 36th St.) on Saturday. Acts will alternate between the main and bar stages. Neal, Cannon, Davy Knowles, and John Nemeth and the Blue Dreamers all play their own sets, with Castiglia and Zito appearing as a duo. Intrepid Rocks the Stones closes out the night with an all-star salute led by the Steepwater Band with Carpenter and Charlotte Checkers’ own Greazy Keyz Jason Atkins.
“Every band I called to be on it said ‘yes,’” Booth says.