Today way back in the year of 1913 on this date James William Perkins was born in Belzoni, Mississippi. Ninety-seven (97) years later now know better by his stage named Pinetop Perkins, he won a Grammy Award for Best Traditional Blues Album for Joined at the Hip, an album he recorded with Willie “Big Eyes” Smith. Perkins is the oldest-ever Grammy winner. In between he had a fantastic career that saw him play with many of the most influential blues and rock and roll performers in American history.
Perkins received numerous honors during his lifetime, including a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award and was inducted into the Blues Hall of Fame. The Blues Music Association has named their award given to the best blues piano player, the Pinetop Perkins Piano Player of the Year Award. Tonight I was thinking about writing about one of the past winners of the award Eden Brent, who has a new album out right now Jigsaw Heart. But when I came home from an errand I searched for a list of past winners of the award. and discovered that back in May dynamite blues piano player Victor Wainwright won the award for the second year in a row!!
I first heard Victor’s piano playing back in 2011 when Victor and his band the Wildroots released their second album Lit Up! at that time people were already starting heap praise on Victor…..
“Victor Wainwright, wields a mighty left hand and a robust vocal delivery that brims with the very spirit of the blues. [Sheryl & Don Crow – Nashville Blues Society]
“Victor’s piano playing is exciting and soulful, along with his strong vocals. Victor is a blues star on the rise. ” [Honey Piazza, Rod Piazza and the Mighty Flyers]
Last year Victor joined with guitarists J.P. Soars and Damon Fowler, bassist Chuck Riley, and drummer Chris Peet. to form Southern Hospitality. Southern Hospitality’s debut album Easy Livin’ was produced by another great bluesman whose albums can be found in my collection Tab Benoit! Back when I wrote about Damon’s last album Sounds of Home I listened to Easy Livin’ and enjoyed it , I listened again to portions of the album tonight, and I certainly think, that I need to listen to a little more of this album!!
So while I que up the album, here’s the band with the opening track Southern Livin’ along with some information about the members of the band. So check them out, too!