Bob Corritore

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Bob Corritore
Born (1956-09-27) September 27, 1956 (age 64)
Chicago, Illinois, United States
GenresElectric blues[1]
Occupation(s)Harmonicist, songwriter and record producer
InstrumentsHarmonica
Years activeLate 1970s–present
LabelsHighTone, Delta Groove, various
WebsiteOfficial website

Bob Corritore (born Robert Joseph Corritore; September 27, 1956) is an American songwriter, blues harmonica player, music producer, blues radio show host and owner of The Rhythm Room, a music venue in Phoenix, Arizona.[1][2][3] Corritore is a recipient of several industry honors, including a Blues Music Award, Blues Blast Music Award, Living Blues Award and a Keeping The Blues Alive Award[4] and more. His accomplishments include producing one album that was nominated for a Grammy Award and contributing harmonica on another.

Early life and education[edit]

Corritore was born in Chicago, Illinois, United States,[1] but was raised from infancy in suburban Wilmette.[5] At age 12, he began a love affair with the blues after hearing a Muddy Waters song on the radio.[2] Shortly thereafter, he received his first harmonica from his elder brother.[5] He took to it immediately and began teaching himself the instrument by playing along with records and using Tony "Little Son" Glover's book, "Blues Harp" -- the go-to instructional volume of the era -- as a guide.[5] As soon as he was old enough, Corritore began attending blues concerts whenever he could, seeing Sam Lay and Waters perform at his high school and Jim Brewer, Eddie Taylor, Wild Child Butler and Detroit Junior in a nearby pizza parlor before venturing to Maxwell Street, the open-air market on Chicago's near South Side, where he caught Big Walter Horton and Big John Wrencher in action.[2][5]

After graduation from New Trier East High School, Bob attended the University Of Tulsa, where he earned a bachelor of business administration degree. He returned to Chicago, where he worked a job by day and pursued his musical education at night. As his skill and confidence improved in his later teens, he started playing in support of Willie Buck and Tail Dragger Jones. His first paying gig came in Buck's band at age 23 alongside Louis and Dave Myers, Johnny "Big Moose" Walker, Odie Payne Jr. and Taylor.[2][5]

Career[edit]

Early career[edit]

Corritore's first live performance came in his teens on Maxwell Street when John Henry Davis invited him to sit in for five or six numbers. He subsequently started attending performances at clubs on the South and West Sides, where he was mentored by Louis Myers, Lester Davenport, Junior Wells, Big Leon Brooks, Little Mack Simmons, Big Walter and others, who regularly invited him on stage to play.[2][5]

Corritore began a career in music production in 1979. He recorded harmonica player Little Willie Anderson, creating his own label, Blues On Blues Records, in the process. Released as Swinging The Blues and produced with the assistance of future Grammy winner Dick Shurman and Delmark Records owner Bob Koester, the LP debuted the same year and was reissued 13 years later in CD format on Earwig Music.[5][6] A second release, Big Leon Brooks' Lets Go To Town, followed in 1982.[7]

Phoenix years[edit]

In 1981, Corritore relocated to Phoenix, Arizona, where he was joined a few months later by Louisiana Red. The pair worked together in duo and full-band formats for the next year before Red relocated to Germany.[2] Corritore subsequently joined a succession of bands fronted by regional favorites Big Pete Pearson, Janiva Magness, Tommy Dukes and Buddy Reed.[5] Years later they worked together again when Corritore produced Louisiana Red's Sittin' Here Wonderin' (1995) (Earwig Music).[1] Since 1984, Corritore has been hosting "Those Lowdown Blues," a five-hour Sunday night on KJZZ (FM).[2][8]

Two years later, Corritore recruited former Howlin’ Wolf drummer Chico Chism to relocate from Chicago to Phoenix for various band and studio projects, a relationship that endured until his death in 2007.[5] Corritore opened The Rhythm Room music venue in Phoenix in 1991. It has served as his home base ever since. He and hIs house band, the Rhythm Room All-Stars, have backed dozens of high-profile blues musicians, both at the club and in recording sessions, a roster that includes Bo Diddley, Pinetop Perkins, Ike Turner, Nappy Brown, Eddy Clearwater and many others.[1][2][5]

His first release as a front man, All-Star Blues Sessions, came in 1999 on the HighTone label with Corritore playing in support of 16 blues artists, including Diddley, Chism, Robert Lockwood Jr., Henry Gray and other talents.[9] That release established Corritore as both a harmonica player and producer in the blues community in a career that has included several subsequent releases under his own name, often sharing billing with other traditional blues artists, including John Primer, Gray, Kid Ramos and Dave Riley.

As a harmonica player, he has guested on albums by R.L. Burnside, Pinetop Perkins, Dave Mason, Zac Harmon, Louisiana Red, Nappy Brown, Diunna Greenleaf, Bob Margolin, Bill Howl-N-Madd Perry, Dave Specter, Smokin’ Joe Kubek, Mannish Boys, Kilborn Alley Blues Band, Tomcat Courtney, Big Pete Pearson, Sam Lay, Mud Morganfield, Johnny Tucker, Willie “Big Eyes” Smith, Ben Levin, Tom Walbank, Deb Ryder, Adrianna Marie, Sugaray Rayford, Tony Holiday, The Freemonts and several others. And he has served as producer for releases by R.L. Burnside, Mojo Buford, Kim Wilson, William Clarke, Chism and compilations released by several labels. The Wilson album -- Smokin' Joint, released on M.C. Records in 2001 -- was a finalist in the best traditional blues category at the 44th Annual Grammy Awards.[10] He has released albums on the HighTone, Blue Witch, Delta Groove and SWMAF labels, as well as his current home, VizzTone.

Corritore has appeared at major blues events around the world including Chicago Blues Festival, Lucerne Blues Festival and Bellinzona Blues Sessions (Switzerland), Edmonton Blues Festival and Calgary Blues Festival (Canada), King Biscuit Blues Festival and Big Blues Bender (U.S.), Bossa Y Jazz and Pocas de Blues (Brazil), Cognac Blues Festival and Bay-Car Blues Festival (France), Marco Fiume Blues Passions Festival (Italy), Moulin Blues Ospel (Holland), Blues At The Savoy (Finland), Hondarribia Blues Festival (Spain), Lahnsteiner Blues Festival (Germany), Boquette Blues Festival (Panama) and more. He has also performed at the Kennedy Center, The Strathmore, The Dodge Theater, AVA Amphitheater and other prestigious venues.[2]

An official endorser of Hohner harmonicas, Corritore regularly leads harmonics master classes at the Blues Foundation's annual International Blues Challenge week in Memphis. The editor and main writer of the Bob Corritore Blues Newsletter,[2] his 2020 album, The Gypsy Woman Told Me, a partnership with John Primer, was a finalist for traditional blues album of the year in the Blues Blast Music Awards after winning the same honor for Don't Let The Devil Ride in 2019.[11]

Awards and honors[edit]

  • 1999: Inducted into the Arizona Blues Hall of Fame.[12]
  • 2001: Kim Wilson's Smokin' Joint album, which Corritore produced, was a Grammy finalist in the traditional blues category[10]
  • 2007: Phil Gordon, the mayor of Phoenix, proclaimed September 29 as "Bob Corritore Day."[2]
  • 2007: Corritore appeared on Pinetop Perkins' On The 88s: Live in Chicago, a finalist in the traditional blues category at the 50th Annual Grammy Awards[13]
  • 2007: Honored by the Blues Foundation with a Keeping the Blues Alive Award for his radio work[14]
  • 2007: Blues Music Award nominee along with Dave Riley in the acoustic blues category for their CD, Travelin' The Dirt Road[14]
  • 2011, 2013 and 2019: Blues Music Award nominee for harmonica player of the year[14]
  • 2012: Living Blues magazine Readers Poll honoree as harmonica player of the year[15]
  • 2014: Blues411 Jimi Award winner for harmonica player of the year[16]
  • 2016: Blues Music Award nominee along with Henry Gray in the historical album category for their CD, Blues Won't Let Me Take My Rest Vol.1[14]
  • 2017: Blues Music Award nominee along with Big Jon Atkinson in the traditional album category for their CD, House Party At Big Jon's[14]
  • 2019: Blues Blast Music Award winner in the traditional album category for Don't Let The Devil Ride[17]
  • 2020: Blues Blast Music Award nominee along with John Primer in the traditional album category for their CD, The Gypsy Woman Told Me[11]

Discography[edit]

Albums[edit]

Album title Record label Accreditation Year of release
All-Star Blues Sessions HMG/HighTone Records Bob Corritore 1999
Travelin' the Dirt Road Blue Witch Records Dave Riley and Bob Corritore 2007
Lucky to Be Living Blue Witch Records Dave Riley and Bob Corritore 2009
Harmonica Blues Delta Groove Bob Corritore and Friends 2010
Phoenix Blues Sessions SWMAF Records Kid Ramos and Bob Corritore 2012
Longtime Friends in the Blues Delta Groove Tail Dragger and Bob Corritore 2012
Knockin' Around These Blues Delta Groove John Primer and Bob Corritore 2013
Hush Your Fuss! SWMAF Records Dave Riley and Bob Corritore 2013
Taboo: Blues Harmonica Instrumentals Delta Groove Bob Corritore 2014
Vol. 1: Blues Won't Let Me Take My Rest Delta Groove Henry Gray and Bob Corritore 2015
House Party At Big Jon's Delta Groove Big Jon Atkinson and Bob Corritore 2016
Ain't Nothing You Can Do! Delta Groove John Primer and Bob Corritore 2017
Don't Let The Devil Ride! SWMAF Records Bob Corritore & Friends 2018
Do The Hip-Shake Baby! SWMAF Records Bob Corritore & Friends 2019
The Gypsy Woman Told Me SWMAF Records/VizzTone John Primer & Bob Corritore 2020
Vol. 2: Cold Chills SWMAF Records/VizzTone Henry Gray & Bob Corritore 2020
Travelin' The Dirt Road (deluxe reissue) SWMAF Records/VizzTone Dave Riley & Bob Corritore 2020
The Kid Ramos/Bob Corritore Phoenix Blues Sessions (deluxe reissue) SWMAF Records/VizzTone Kid Ramos & Bob Corritore 2020

[2][18]

Guest[edit]

Album title Record label Accreditation Year of release
For Our Children Radioactive Various Artists 1978
Ominous Clouds Last Flash Various Artists 1982
Blue Saguaro Fervor Various Artists 1993
Raw As Hell Cher-Kee Chico Chism 1995
Yoakum Texas Blues PAU Lucius Parr 1996
Desert Blues Volume 1 CDGB Various Artists 1996
Vietnam Blues Tempest Sarge Lintecum 1997
What Kind of Woman Is That! Blue Loon Texas Red 1997
Gimme Some a Yo' Sugar! Owl's Nest Lisa Otey 1999
We Got a Problem PAU Lucius Parr 1999
Plays Chicago Blues HighTone Henry Gray 2001
One More Drink Blue Witch Big Pete Pearson 2001
Rhythm Room Blues HighTone Various Artists 2001
Blues Vredenburg Utrect Estafette Sampson Various Artists 2001
Blues Greats The Blues Foundation Various Artists 2002
American Blues Putumayo Various Artists 2003
No Monkeys on This Train HighTone R. L. Burnside 2003
Snakes Crawls at Night Random Chance Chief Schabuttie Gilliame 2004
No Turn on Red HighTone Louisiana Red 2005
Born in the Honey: The Pinetop Perkins Story Sagebrush Productions Various Artists 2006
Way Back HighTone Willie "Big Eyes" Smith 2006
The HighTone Records Story HighTone Various Artists 2006
On the 88s: Live in Chicago Kingston Pinetop Perkins 2007
I'm Here Baby Blue Witch Big Pete Pearson with The Rhythm Room All Stars 2007
House Rockin' and Blues Shoutin'! Celebrating 15 Years of The Rhythm Room Blue Witch Various Artists 2007
Lucerne Blues Festival 2007 LBF Various Artists 2007
Long Time Coming Blind Pig Nappy Brown 2007
Stop and Think About It Earwig Music Chris James and Patrick Rynn 2008
Downsville Blues Blue Witch Tomcat Courtney 2008
Back to the Black Bayou Bluestone Louisiana Red & Little Victor's Juke Joint 2008
2008 Blues Music Awards Blues Music Awards Various Artists 2009
Live in Lahnstein 2008 Collectors Only Big Pete Pearson and The Rhythm Room All Stars 2009
Feelin' Good Blind Pig Jimmy Rogers 2009
Finger in Your Eye VizzTone Big Pete Pearson 2009
Best of 'The Legendary' Sam Lay SL Records Sam Lay 2010
30th Blues Music Awards Blues Music Awards Various Artists 2010
Gonna Boogie Anyway Earwig Music Chris James and Patrick Rynn 2010
Blues for the Gulf.org VizzTone Various Artists 2010
2010 Blues Music Awards Blues Music Awards Various Artists 2011
Boogie All Night El Torro Little Victor 2011
Memphis Mojo Ruf Louisiana Red & Little Victor's Juke Joint 2011
Trying to Hold On Blue Mercy Diunna Greenleaf 2011
Lucerne Blues Festival 2011 Lucerne Blues Festiva Various Artists 2011
Gotta Go PAU Lucius Parr 2012
Montauk Rocks Oscail Films Various Artists 2012
Son of the Seventh Son Severn Mud Morganfield 2012
Blues for Children 2012 Hondarribia Blues Society Various Artists 2012
Close to the Bone Delta Groove Smokin' Joe Kubek & Bnois King 2012
Double Dynamite Delta Groove The Mannish Boys 2012
The Walter Davis Project Electro-Fi Various Artists 2013
With Friends Vol. 1 Bluebeat Music Trickbag 2013
Rooster Indys Records Clay Swafford 2013
Sittin' Right Down and Moan Harsh Records Harsh Guitar Mark 2013
34th Blues Music Awards Blues Music Awards Various Artists 2014
Future's Past Something-Music Dave Mason 2014
Message in Blue Delmark Dave Specter 2014
Wrapped Up and Ready Delta Groove The Mannish Boys 2014
Soul Bag - La Sélection Blues & Soul Soul Bag Magazine Various Artists 2014
Lucerne Blues Festival 2014 Lucerne Blues Festival Various Artists 2014
Blues Magazine - The Best of 2014 The Blues Magazine Various Artists 2014
Southside Nimoy Sue Records Sugaray Rayford 2015
Back Down South Bluebeat Music Big Jon Atkinson 2015
The Power of My Shoes Eureka Live Kathy Boye 2015
Blues For Big Walter Eller Soul Records Various Artists 2016
Hondarribia Blues Festival 2016 Hondarribia Blues Society Various Artists 2016
Alligator Truax Records The Fremonts 2016
36th Blues Music Awards The Blues Foundation Various Artists 2016
Grit Grease & Tears Bejeb Music Deb Ryder 2016
Soul Bag - La Sélection Blues & Soul Soul Bag Magazine Various Artists 2016
Kingdom Of Swing VizzTone Adrianna Marie 2017
The Tolono Tapes Run It Back Kilborn Alley Blues Band 2017
37th Blues Music Awards The Blues Foundation Various Artists 2017
92 MusicMatters Henry Gray & The Creole Cats 2017
Seven Day Blues Highjohn Johnny Tucker 2018
38th Blues Music Awards The Blues Foundation Various Artists 2018
La Selection Blues & Soul: CD Sampler 037 Soul Bag Magazine Various Artists 2018
Porch Sessions VizzTone Various Artists 2019
Mississippi BarBQ Catfood Zac Harmon 2019
Before Me VizzTone Ben Levin 2019
Bliss Self-produced Carol Pacey & The Honey Shakers 2019
Thankful For The Blues Not On A Label Bill "Howl-N-Madd" Perry 2019
This Guitar And Tonight VizzTone Bob Margolin 2019
The Rhythm Room Self-produced Willie Buck 2020
Knee Deep Into These Blues Self-produced Bluesman Mike And The Blues Review 2020
Tom Walbank Presents Hootmatic Blues Self-produced Various Artists 2020

[2][19][20]

Producer[edit]

Album title Record label Accreditation Year of release
Swinging The Blues Earwig Music Little Willie Anderson 1979
Let's Go To Town Earwig Music Big Leon Brooks 1982
Low Blows - The Anthology of Chicago Harmonica Blues Rooster Blues Various Artists 1994
Earwig Music Company 16th Anniversary Sampler Earwig Music Various Artists 1995
Sittin Here Wonderin' Earwig Music Louisiana Red 1995
Essential Harmonica Blues River North Records Various Artists 1997
Not The Same Old Blues Crap Fat Possum Various Artists 1997
Come On In Fat Possum R.L. Burnside 1998
Earwig Music Company 20th Anniversary Collection Earwig Music Various Artists 1999
Champagne & Reefer HighNote Records Mojo Buford 1999
Smokin' Joint M.C. Records Kim Wilson 2001
Not The Same Old Blues Crap Vol II Fat Possum Various Artists 2001
Blues On My Radio Southwest Musical Arts Foundation Various Artists 2004
The Legend Live M.C. Records Robert Lockwood Jr. 2004
Blood Harmony: A Cappella Southwest Musical Arts Foundation The Reed Family Album 2005
Chico Chism's West Side Chicago Blues Party Southwest Musical Arts Foundation Chico Chism 2006
Time Brings About A Change... A Floyd Dixon Celebration High John Records Various Artists 2006
Broadcasting The Blues Southwest Musical Arts Foundation Various Artists 2009
Flyin' High - A Collection of Phoenix Blues, Rhythm, and Spirit from the 1950s and 60s Southwest Musical Arts Foundation Various Artists 2010
Bet On The Blues Blues Fidelity Paul Oscher 2010
Heavy Hittin' West Coast Harp Bear Family Records William Clarke 2019

[2][21][20]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e Heather Phares. "Bob Corritore - Biography". AllMusic. Retrieved 6 January 2015. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n "Biography". Bobcorritore.com. Retrieved 6 January 2015. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  3. ^ Gunther, Marty (November 29, 2019). "Bob Corritore: True ambassador of the blues". Bluesblastmagazine.com.
  4. ^ "2007 Keeping the Blues Alive Awards Archives - Page 2 of 3". Blues.org. Retrieved 23 November 2020. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  5. ^ a b c d e f g h i j "Bob Corritore: True ambassador of the blues". Bluesblastmagazine.com.
  6. ^ "Little Willie Anderson - Swinging The Blues". Discogs.com. Retrieved 23 November 2020. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  7. ^ "Big Leon Brooks". Discogs.com. Retrieved 23 November 2020. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  8. ^ "Spotlight on Bob Corritore". Jazz.kjzz.org. Retrieved 6 January 2015. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  9. ^ Hal Horowitz. "All-Star Blues Sessions - Bob Corritore - Songs, Reviews, Credits, Awards". AllMusic. Retrieved 6 January 2015. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  10. ^ a b "Kim Wilson Grammy nominations". Grammy.com.
  11. ^ a b "2020 Blues Blast Music Awards nominees". Bluesblastmagazine.com.
  12. ^ "Bob Corritore". Azblueshof.com. Retrieved 6 January 2015. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  13. ^ "Pinetop Perkins Grammy nominations". Grammy.com.
  14. ^ a b c d e "Blues Foundation". Blues.org.
  15. ^ "Living Blues". Livingblues.com.
  16. ^ "2014 Blues411 'Jimi' Awards". Blues411.com. Archived from the original on 2015-06-29. Retrieved 2015-06-26. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  17. ^ "Blues Blast". Bluesblastmagazine.com.
  18. ^ Heather Phares. "Bob Corritore - Discography". AllMusic. Retrieved 6 January 2015. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  19. ^ "Recordings As A Performer". Bobcorritore.com. Retrieved 20 January 2015. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  20. ^ a b "Recordings". Bobcorritore.com. 13 May 2013. Retrieved 10 October 2020. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  21. ^ "Recordings". Bobcorritore.com. Retrieved 15 January 2015. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)

External links[edit]