SARASOTA, FL – While patrons of Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe may be more accustomed to hearing R&B and soul at WBTT, the blues holds an esteemed place in Black music history and culture and the local arts organization is thrilled to feature it. On September 3, local fans of the blues will have the opportunity – for one night only – to hear an emerging Latin American artist and his group, the José Ramirez Band, as it brings its passionate brand of the blues to Sarasota.
A 2021 Blues Music Awards nominee for Best Emerging Artist Album (“Here I Come”), Ramirez earned second place in The Blues Foundation’s 2020 International Blues Challenge in Memphis after advancing to the semi-finals against over 230 bands from around the world. He has played at legendary venues around the world, including Buddy Guy’s Legends in Chicago, where Buddy Guy himself joined him on stage. His appearance at WBTT will be his last show in the U.S. before launching his third European tour.
Ramirez is a Delmark recording artist—the first Latin American to sign with the renowned Chicago-based blues label. His two previous European tours included more than 45 concerts in England, Spain, the Netherlands and Belgium.
“Certainly, WBTT has carved out a niche for itself with a focus on R&B and soul music but Black artists were responsible for creating and developing the genre of the blues since its birth in the 1800s,” said WBTT Founder and Artistic Director Nate Jacobs. “We are thrilled to welcome an exciting young artist like José Ramirez – whose take on the blues is heavily influenced by R&B and soul – and give local music fans a taste of where the genre is going today.”
The show takes place on Friday, September 3 at 7:30 p.m. at WBTT (1012 N. Orange Ave., Sarasota). Tickets are $27 (including ticket fee). For more about WBTT or to purchase tickets, go to westcoastblacktheatre.org or call 941-366-1505.
About Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe
The mission of Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe (WBTT) is to produce professional theatre that promotes and celebrates African American history and experience, engages a broad base of patrons and audiences, supports the development of a dynamic group of aspiring artists, and builds self-esteem in youth of color.