Born on Sonny Terry’s birthday (October 24, 1950), Tom Ball was meant to play music. From the guitar at eleven to the harmonica at thirteen, there has never been a day when the blues were not running around wherever he was.
To those of us who love his music, it has always been about a bottomless case of harmonicas. He has been featured on over 200 CD’s for other artists and countless film and TV soundtracks. He has also recorded three solo guitar albums and written five music instructional books. Some of the stories that he shares with us come from years of vast knowledge about what he plays. He is a noted blues historian always telling us about where it all came from. It may sound like some of it is out of a novel but it is not. Oh, however he has written a couple of those too.
Kenny Sultan is the quieter guy. But his guitar can keep even Tom in his place. Kenny’s musical education was a little more formal. With a background in Ethnomusicology, Kenny is a noted teacher at the university level. The knowledge of guitar in his mind is imparted often to others, but what comes out of his fingers is what has kept us listening for years.
So powerful is his sound. So remarkable is his style, that Martin Guitar has issued a “Kenny Sultan Signature 000-18” guitar. Moreover, Kenny may own and play more vintage Martins than any other blues man anywhere.
Together, these boys have way Too Much Fun, which also happens to be the title of Fred’s favorite Tom and Kenny album. Around the world in scores of countries, Tom and Kenny have become known as “America’s Good Time Blues Ambassadors”. For us they are just the best blues guys from the tavern, just outside of Live Oak. This will be their sixth visit; maybe we should just make it an annual thing. Música Del Río has almost recovered enough to let them back in for Christmas. You will want to be here too.