On Wednesday, March 16th at noon, the Pell City Public Library is pleased to welcome special guest musicians, Debbie Bond and Rick Asherson for a spectacular concert of soulful blues, spiced with a touch of soul, jazz and country! Attendees can expect an energetic, fun-filled concert with plenty of crowd-pleasing selections and camaraderie. This Tuscaloosa-based duo, play throughout the United States, but if you are fortunate, you might catch them in Alabama at Pepper Place in Birmingham, The Indigo Hotel in Tuscaloosa, or The Capital Oyster Bar in Montgomery before they head to Europe this summer for scheduled concerts there. This duo has made it their mission, through the years, to ensure that Blues music, and its history, is celebrated and remembered. So, despite a busy schedule, they also make sure to schedule events with the Alabama Blues Project along the way.
Debbie Bond was the co-founder, and for many years the Executive Director, of the Alabama Blues Project, an award-winning organization founded in 1995 to promote and preserve Alabama’s outstanding blues heritage. This singer, guitar player and songwriter has played with many of the older, traditional Alabama blues musicians for over 30 years, including Johnny Shines, Eddie Kirkland, and Willie King in clubs, schools, and on festival stages. Her performance and association with mentor, Johnny Shines actually inspired the creations of the Alabama Blues Project. Bond made her musical debut in West Africa where she lived as a child with her anthropologist mother, and formed her first band in Brighton, England while attending college. In addition to her talent in music, Bond, is also an award-winning videographer who worked for Tuscaloosa-based Alabama Public Television. Many of the independent projects that she worked on there, in the 1980’s, are archived at the Smithsonian Institute. More recently, she has presented live showcases of Alabama blues women. Her blues background has greatly influenced her musical style, richly flavoring her guitar playing, soulful voice, and musical writing. However, her sound is also contemporary, emracing blues rock, soul and country. This unique synthesis is evidenced in her music albums, What Goes Around, Comes Around; Hearts Are Wild; That Thing Called Love; Enjoy the Ride; and her latest, with Rick AshersonBlues Without Borders which was released in July of 2021.
Rick Asherson has played harmonica, guitar, and piano since the 1960s in his native city of London, England. Since his move to Alabama in 2001, he has played keyboards and the harmonica with such greats blues as Willie King, Caroline Shines, Eddie Kirkland, Little Jimmy Reed, and BJ Miller. He has a vocationally background in computer programming, osteopathy, and non-profit administration. Asherson served as Assistant Director of the Alabama Blues Project from 2003 until 2011. His skill in grant-writing greatly enhanced the growth of the Alabama Blue Project, as did his creation and development of the Alabama Blues Project’s educational program, curriculum, and traveling exhibitions . He continues to instruct, as time permits, with the Alabama Blue Project’s award-winning after school programs and residencies.
Debbie Bond and Rick Asherson will combine their musical expertise in concert at the Pell City Public Library on Wednesday, March 16th at noon, for the library’s Wild and Wonderful Wednesday series. The event is free and all are welcome!