Minnesota Blues Society

Honoring the Musicians, Composers, Authors and Individuals Who Have Made a Historical Contribution, Impact and Overall Influence on the Blues in the State of Minnesota.

Bruce McCabe
Bruce McCabe

Bruce McCabe Voted "Blues Performer"
2011 MN Blues Hall of Fame

Ceremony @ O'Gara's Bar & Grill, Sunday, November 13, 2011

The 2011 inductees into the Minnesota Blues Hall of Fame were announced at the GTCBMS Annual Members' Appreciation Picnic on Sunday, July 17th. Bruce McCabe was selected by GTCBMS members as "Blues Performer". Curtis Blake was chosen for his harmonica work in this year's new category, "Blues Sideman". Wilebski's Blues Saloon took the honors for "Supportive of the Blues (Non-Performer)". In the "Art & Literature" category, Tim "Dr. Dog" Bradach was awarded for his work with Cold Wind Records. "Blues Recording" honors went to Sonny Rodgers and the Cat Scratchers for the single, Big Leg Woman/Cadillac Baby which, incidentally, includes harmonica work by Curtis Blake. In the final category, "Blues Song", the late Doug Maynard received top vote for "Lost In The Blues" produced by Tim Bradach on Cold Wind Records. — Jake Jacobson


Leonard "Baby Doo" Caston

Baby Doo Caston
"Baby Doo" Caston

Honored At Ceremony On November 13

The Minnesota Blues Hall of Fame Nominations Committee has selected Leonard "Baby Doo" Caston as the first recipient of the Hall of Fame "Legacy" Award. The award celebrates the lifetime contribution to the Blues of a deceased artist who made a significant impact on the Blues genre in Minnesota during their lifetime.

Born on June 2, 1917 in Sumrall, MS; Leonard "Baby Doo" Caston began his musical career playing guitar in local establishments throughout Southern Mississippi booked by his mother, Minda. He moved to Chicago in 1936 where he taught himself to play piano "by ear" and formed several groups in that area. In the early 1940's he took up residence and performed in New York City. During World War II, along with Alberta Hunter, Baby Doo was part of the first black USO troupe and traveled to China, India, Africa, Egypt and Europe entertaining the troops. In 1945 the troupe gave a command performance in Frankfort, Germany for Allied commanders Gen. Eisenhower and Gen. Zhukov. Baby Doo returned to Chicago after the war and formed his band "The Five Breezes" as well as joining with Willie Dixon and Ollie Crawford to form the "Big Three Trio." He recorded with the Decca, Columbia and Bullet labels scoring a hit with the Big Three Trio recording, "You Sure Look Good to Me." In 1969 he moved to Minneapolis where he continued to perform at local establishments like The Cork & Fork, Paul's Place, McGuire's Inn, Murray's and the Radisson Metrodome until his death in 1987. Leonard "Baby Doo" Caston has left a lasting legacy and had a profound influence upon the next generation of Minnesota blues musicians.

Judy Cedar Honored As GTCBMS Founder

Rena Haus & Judy Cedar
Rena Haus with Judy Cedar

Minnesota Blues Hall of Fame's
1st Keeping The Blues Alive Award

Judy Cedar became the first person to be honored with the "Keeping The Blues Alive" Award from the Minnesota Blues Hall of Fame at the 2011 Ceremony on Sunday, November 13th at O'Gara's Bar & Grill, St. Paul. Judy was presented with her award by her friend, musician, Rena Haus. In July of 2002, along with Gregg Harcus and Theresa Cunningham, Judy founded the Greater Twin Cities Blues Music Society. Judy's focus for the Society was that of education as outlined in the Mission Statement to "research and document the history of local blues music; to chart the evolution of the blues community located in the Twin Cities region of Minnesota; to teach, interpret, archive, catalog and otherwise preserve the history of blues music in this metro region; to provide learning opportunities related to this American-roots music genre; and to enhance and celebrate the existing blues music environment in the Greater Twin Cities Metropolitan Area of the State of Minnesota." Judy served on the Board of the Society through 2009 often holding the positions of both Secretary and Treasurer. Congratulations and Thank You, Judy. We hope to continue and expand upon the foundation that you have provided. — Jake Jacobson

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