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Rick Estrin & The Nightcats
Appearing Live at Moes Alley
Sunday, March 23rd
Afternoon Blues Series
4:00 PM, Doors Open 3:00 PM, $20, day of tickets available after 2pm at Moe's or by phone 831 479-1854

Moe's Alley welcomes back blues harp legend RICK ESTRIN & THE NIGHTCATS for a special afternoon blues performance.  Doors open at 3pm and the show starts at 4pm.

Rick Estrin, according to The San Francisco Chronicle, "is an amazing harmonica player, a soulful lead vocalist and a brilliant songwriter." The award-winning musician, another critic said, "sounds like Little Walter playing and singing Leiber and Stoller." Along with The Nightcats- jaw-dropping guitarist Chris "Kid" Andersen, singing drummer (who plays standing up) J. Hansen and dynamic multi-instrumentalist Lorenzo Farrell (electric and acoustic bass, organ and piano)-Rick Estrin serves up fresh and modern original blues injected with a solid dose of gritty roadhouse rock 'n' roll. Since the 2009 release of their celebrated Alligator Records debut, Twisted, the band has toured non-stop, honing their creative synergy to a razor's edge. Night after night, the band blazes their own innovative musical path while still remaining true to the blues. The results of all of this natural chemistry can be heard on their irresistible new album, One Wrong Turn.

One Wrong Turn is an up-to-the-minute and totally accessible slice of original deep blues with a simmering, funky rock edge fueled by Andersen's blazing genre-hopping guitar and Farrell's and Hansen's lively keyboard and rhythm work. The album features 12 new songs, most written by Estrin, with all the band members also contributing originals. One Wrong Turn effortlessly slides from the sly D.O.G. to the wry and ironic title track, from the laugh-out-loud (I Met Her On The) Blues Cruise to the spaghetti-western-while-surfing instrumental The Legend Of Taco Cobbler to the stellar solo harmonica and vocal delivery of Old News. The lowdown blues Broke And Lonesome and the outsider observations of Lucky You find Estrin personalizing political issues, telling universal truths in the process. One listen makes it clear that this is a group comprised of four world-class musicians, who together form one of the tightest and most original bands in any genre. 

Rick Estrin ranks among the very best harp players, singers and songwriters in the blues world. His work on the reeds is deep in the tradition of harmonica masters Sonny Boy Williamson II and Little Walter Jacobs, while at the same time pushing that tradition forward. The Associated Press calls his harp playing "endlessly impressive."

In addition to his harmonica and vocal skills, Rick Estrin is a songwriter of unparalleled talent. Critics have compared his original songs to the work of Cab Calloway, Louis Jordan, Willie Dixon and Leiber and Stoller. And his hipster, street-smart vocals are the perfect vehicle for driving those songs home. Blues Revue says, "Estrin has created some of the finest blues songs of any artist on the planet. His carefully wrought lyrics penetrate human weakness with the precision of a boxer, though more often than not, he chooses to leave you laughing after the blow's been struck."

Estrin won the 1994 Blues Music Award for his composition My Next Ex-Wife and has written songs for a growing legion of other musicians. Three of his songs found their way onto Grammy-nominated albums: Don't Put Your Hands On Me (on Koko Taylor's Force Of Nature), I'm Just Lucky That Way (on Robert Cray's Shame + A Sin), and Homely Girl (on John Hammond's Trouble No More). "I like songs that tell stories," Rick says, "songs that are well-crafted and meaningful." Along with Dixon and Leiber and Stoller, Estrin cites Sonny Boy Williamson II, Percy Mayfield and Detroit bluesman Baby Boy Warren as his major songwriting influences. Billboard says Rick writes "fabulous, remarkable original material." Besides Estrin's streetwise songwriting and musical skills, he is among the most entertaining and colorful showmen around. His quick wit and his signature look-coifed hair, pencil-thin mustache and sharply pressed, custom made suits-add even more color to his performances. "People don't go out to see people who look like themselves," says Rick. "They want to see something special. I was schooled in this business to be a showman, and that's what you get when you come to see me perform."

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