By Brady Grove, Times Reporter
Charlie B and the Groove Crew performed a highly energetic and witty blues concert at the Strathmore Travelodge on Jan. 6 to prepare for the upcoming International Blues Challenge in Memphis, Tenn. Jan. 16-20.
“It was a pleasure to perform last night in Strathmore,” said Charlie Butler, singer and guitarist. “As I have commented before it was like coming home to visit with old friends who have supported me over the years.”
The show was a hit for the audience that was up and dancing by the second song – a cover of Splish Splash by Bobby Darin. Audience members waltzed during slower songs and moved to the rhythm of faster songs including line dancing, to which everyone seemed to know the steps.
Butler has been concerned about the overall health of blues music as a whole, but for Strathmore residents, that didn’t seem to be an issue as the venue was nearly full. Linda Storkson, president of the Strathmore Musical Arts Society, said they have collaborated before and received good support for blues music in the Strathmore area.
According to the band’s publicist Cheri Nichol, 92 people attended the show.
The show was put on to help raise money for the six-member band’s trip to the International Blues Challenge, which will feature more than 260 blues groups from around the world.
Charlie B and the Groove Crew bring an international background with musicians coming from Japan, Canada, U.S. and Trinidad and Tobago. The big stage won’t intimidate the crew as they have competed at bigger events before such as the 2017 Calgary International Blues Festival.
“I look forward to coming back with a CD release party and to tell the story of Memphis,” said Butler.