Bluespower is a recent collaboration of local musician/music teacher/music store owner Kenny “Big Daddy” Williams and Gregory Michael, who left Cincinnati several years ago to bring his Gospel-influenced music background to Southern California. Kenny “Big Daddy” Williams most recently co-fronted the popular local band the Papermoon Gypsys.
In only a few months Bluespower has attracted quite a following and has been booked for many shows. They’ve earned a spot at The Point in Dana Point as the regular band on Sundays, while they will play at several music festivals coming up including the New Blues Festival II in Long Beach and the Real Blues Festival of OC 6. Also on the agenda are appearances at the Orange County Fair, Del Mar Fair and the upcoming Dana Point Food, Wine and Music Festival on June 27th.
Sitting around after a hard-driving, full-capacity show at The Point in Dana Point, Kenny and Gregory explained together where the band is heading. “We’ve only been together two months, just the two of us. We have a unit that we’re putting together, but right now we’re bringing in musicians as we need them for gigs”. They both continued, with Kenny saying, “We’re lining everything up and getting ready to go into the studio. Gregory and I are trying to write songs and the songs, we sit down and fool around and wee write songs. It comes right out of us”. The already have an all-star music producer lined up who is John Schriener, who produced albums for Donna Summers.
Gregory went on to say, “We’re able to sit down, create things and be on the same vibe, the same emotional expressions musically in order to come up with a unique sound. That’s why we call it Bluespower, it has rock, it has all that stuff in it. Our original compositions, I think knowing him and how he works, will be like a melting pot of them all”.
Kenny and Gregory continued, with Kenny adding that “We want to evolve the blues. Well because, as you saw when we were playing, we’re not scripted. We don’t know what we’re doing. We just do”.
They both finished by saying, We just follow the music”. Kenny added, “Yep, it’s all about vibe”. Gregory said “We feel that if we follow the music then we aren’t going to make any mistakes. Kenny summed it up by saying, “That’s right, if we don’t do it the same way everyone else did it then nobody can accuse us of making a mistake! No duplications, all originations. We’re all about that. We’re just thrilled that it’s working”.
Kenny “Big Daddy” Williams had a lot of great musical influences growing up too. He said, “They go way back. My first musical influences were Muddy Waters, Howlin’ Wolf, those kind of guys. Albert King of course, Freddie King I loved a lot. The first concert I went to was Freddie King and that’s what got me into the blues. It was at the Palladium and I heard him bend one not and I said ‘Oh my God! I have to play like that’. And then, this is before Hendrix, when Hendrix came along, I never left my room. I just stayed there and listened to Hendrix there everyday. My parents thought I was crazy, because I’d come home, eat a box of cookies and drink a half-gallon of milk and listen to Electric Ladyland every single day. They were about ready to put me into the hospital!”.
Gregory also had musical influences. He said, “I’m out of Ohio; I’m like a funkateer, R&B and blues guy, but I’m right there on the Gateway to the South. I’ve had a lot of experience in Bourbon Street, New Orleans, Chicago driving around as a kid listening to music”. Kenny added, “The chitlin’ circuit”. Growing up, Gregory also was influenced by the Gospel music he was surrounded with.
Gregory explained the Bluespower name and musical partnership with his “musical soulmate” by saying, “We just kept playing together and it was a feeling that catalyzed both out spirits together, with im being a bluesman and me being a bluesman, R&B and funk man out of Ohio. We kind of stewed it all together, stirred it and said ‘Hey man, this is Blues Power!’. So it came to reality and we said ‘Hey man, let’s hold on to that”. Bluespower featuring Kenny “Big Daddy” Williams and Gregory Michael will be playing their unique style of the blues with funk and R&B all summer at The Point in Dana Point as well as at assorted festivals and venues. For an updated list of schedules and more info: