SARASOTA, FL – The Jose Ramirez Band will bring its steamy and passionate brand of the blues to Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe for one night only, returning to WBTT’s stage after its September 2021 concert here. A 2021 Blues Music Awards nominee for Best Emerging Artist Album, Ramirez earned second place in the 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.
At WBTT, Ramirez and his band will play new and classic blues tunes, including songs from their latest album, “Major League Blues.” Released in March 2022, the album was recorded with the Delmark All-Star Band in the summer of 2021 at Delmark Records Riverside Studio with blessings from 93-year-old Jimmy Johnson and 90-year-old Bob Stroger, two of the most well-respected elders of the blues world. Witnesses of this session were moved to tears listening to the young Costa Rican trading electrifying phrases with the one and only Jimmy Johnson. The album presents eight original songs and two classic tunes by masters of Chicago blues, Magic Sam and Eddie Taylor.
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 more than 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.
Ramirez is a Delmark recording artist—the first Latin American to sign with the renowned Chicago-based blues label. He and his band have toured Europe three times, most recently in the fall of 2021.
“WBTT has certainly 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. “The blues holds an esteemed place in Black music history and culture; our audience loved Jose last year and we are thrilled to welcome him back. Jose – whose take on the blues is heavily influenced by R&B and soul – gives local music fans a taste of where the genre is going today.”
The show takes place on Saturday, June 11 at 7:30 p.m. in The Donelly Theatre 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. Visit westcoastblacktheatre.org.