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I started a quest to find terrific blues music and incredible musicianship when I was just a little kid. I also have a tremendous appreciation of fine musical instruments and equipment. One of my greatest joys all of my life was sharing my finds with my friends. I'm now publishing my journey. I hope that you come along!

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Saturday, February 4, 2012

When My Left Eye Jumps - Tommy Castro Band

Born in San Jose, California in 1955, Castro first picked up a guitar at age 10. He came under the spell of Eric Clapton, Elvin Bishop, Mike Bloomfield and other blues-rock players. As he got older, Castro moved forward by investigating the past, falling in love with the blues guitar work of Muddy Waters, B.B. King, Freddie King, Buddy Guy, Elmore James and soul singers like Ray Charles, Wilson Pickett and James Brown. By his late 20s he was playing in a variety of San Francisco-area blues and soul bands.

Castro joined Warner Brothers’ artists The Dynatones in the late 1980s. The celebrated rocking soul band had a huge fan base and toured the U.S. constantly. He honed his chops with The Dynatones on the road for two years, performing live all across the country and backing major artists like Carla Thomas and Albert King. He formed the first incarnation of The Tommy Castro Band in 1991, achieving local popularity and winning the Bay Area Music Award for Best Club Band in both 1993 and 1994. With his local fan base quickly expanding, he released Exception To The Rule on Blind Pig. He began touring nationally with his band, picking up new fans everywhere he went. The album won the 1997 Bay Area Music Award for Outstanding Blues Album, and Castro also took the award for Outstanding Blues Musician that same year.

In the mid-1990s The Tommy Castro Band served as the house band for three seasons on NBC Television’s Comedy Showcase (airing right after Saturday Night Live), bringing him in front of millions of viewers every week. Beginning in the mid-1990s, Castro released a series of critically acclaimed CDs for Blind Pig, Telarc and 33rd Street Records as well as one on his own Heart And Soul label. In 2001 and 2002 the legendary B.B. King asked Castro to open his summer concert tours. Castro received an open invitation to join the King Of The Blues on stage for the nightly finale. For the last 15 years, Castro has rarely been off the road, playing over 150 shows a year, each one a spontaneous and exhilarating testament to the power of live music.

Connecting with his audience and sharing his enthusiasm with his fans is something Castro does naturally and effortlessly. With his horn-fueled, blues-rocking, road-tested band behind him, Castro never fails to sweep his audience out of their seats and onto the dance floor. His ability to ignite a raucous good-time party – along with the recent CDs Hard Believer and Tommy Castro Presents The Legendary Rhythm & Blues Revue – Live! – assure that Tommy Castro and his band are in constant demand. Listening to Castro’s recordings and seeing him live, believing is not only easy, it’s a whole lot of fun.
Here's a track of TRommy on the Cruise...I think it sounds great!
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