Bringing crowds to their feet at the hardest to please and sophisticated night clubs in the Midwest, Reverend Raven and the Chain Smoking Altar Boys play traditional blues, straight up with a big dose of passion. With smoking grooves, served up with hot harmonica and smooth stinging guitar they play original songs peppered with nods to Slim Harpo, Little Walter, Jimmy Rogers, Billy Boy Arnold, Junior Wells and the three Kings.
Born and raised on south side of Chicago, the Reverend has been playing the blues since 1971 when he first saw Freddy King play at the Kinetic Theatre in Chicago. After 15 year hitch in the Navy he moved to Milwaukee where he began a long friendship and collaboration with Madison Slim, long time harmonica player for Jimmy Rogers. Since 1990 he has opened for B.B King, Gatemouth Brown, Pinetop Perkins, Koko Taylor Band, Junior Wells, Billy Branch, Magic Slim, Elvin Bishop, Sugar Blue, Lonnie Brooks, William Clarke, Lefty Dizz, Rod Piazza, Fabulous Thunderbirds, Duke Robillard, Jeff Healy, Trampled Underfoot, Mike Zito, Nick Moss, Tommy Castro and numerous others at festivals and at Buddy Guy’s Legends where he has been on rotation as a headliner for 16 years.
- Wisconsin Music Industry (WAMI) award for best blues band in 1999, 2000, 2004, 2005, 2008, 2010, 2015. People’s Choice Award in 2006, 2008, 2010.
- Voted the Best Blues Band In Milwaukee by The Shepherd Express Reader’s Poll in 2012, 2014, 2015 and 2016.
- 2011 Blues Blast Music Award Nominee for Best Blues Band” and “Best Song”
- 2015 Blues Blast Music Award Award for Best Live CD
- 2015 Independent Blues Scene Award for Best Live CD
- 2007 Grammy Award Nominee for “Best Blues Compilation CD” for Bamfest 2007
- Band features Grammy Nominee Westside Andy Linderman on harmonica
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