Twin Cities' guitar sensation Ross William Perry has been making waves on the blues scene throughout the Midwest for the past six years.
Ross' musical education began at the age of four when he got his first guitar. He spent many nights tucked away in the kitchen of his dad's bar listening to the live music in the other room and playing along with the bands. One night when he was seven, one of the bands heard him playing and insisted he join them.
"I reluctantly got up on stage," recalled Ross, "and played 'Pipeline' and 'Walk Don't Run' with them. I'll never forget it, my knees were shaking so much I had to sit down to play."
When Ross got off stage his dad asked him if he was nervous, and he said "yeah." Then he asked Ross if he wanted to do it again, and he replied, "YEAH!" Ross was smitten. At that point he knew that this is what he wanted to do.
Listening to blues music before he even knew what to call it, he knew there was something special about the blues. An early fascination with the Rolling Stones, Eric Clapton, and the Yardbirds led him to discover the roots of their music. He began listening to Albert King, Freddie King, Albert Collins, T. Bone Walker and Hound Dog Taylor and absorbed their music like a sponge.
Since graduating from High School in 1998 and forming his own band, Ross has been hitting the clubs and touring the Midwest almost non-stop, developing an enthusiastic following along the way.
After joining Debbie Davies on stage one night, she had this to say about Ross -- "I've played with most of the young, up and coming guitarists, but Ross just might be one of the best ever."
The venues for the popular Pub Crawls scheduled for Friday and Saturday nights are as follows:
The Northwest Iowa Musicians will appear at The Copper Cup from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.
Jimmy Davis and Friends with Kelsey Klingensmith and special guests Glen Alexander and Oria Aspen will be performing at The Gathering Place from 9 p.m. to midnight.
Chad Elliott will be at The Gasthaus from 9 p.m. to midnight.
The Damon Dotson Band will be at The Other Place from 9 p.m. to midnight.
The Ross William Perry Band will be at the Cherokee Bowl from 9 p.m. to midnight.
*Saturday, Jan. 14
The Mary Bridget Davies Group will be hosting the Saturday Jam Session at The Gathering Place from noon to 4 p.m.
The Lonny Lynn Orchestra will play from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. at the Festival's Main Concert at Western Iowa Tech Community College Conference Center.
Glenn Alexander and Oria Aspen will be at the Copper Cup from 9 p.m. to midnight.
The Bob Pace Band will be at the Cherokee Bowl from 9 p.m. to midnight.
The Johnnie Bolin Band will be at The Other Place from 9 p.m. to midnight.
The Mary Bridget Davies Group will be at the Cherokee VFW Club from 9 p.m. to midnight.
The popular Student Music Clinic for invited area schools conducted by the Jim Oatts Sextet will be held at the Cherokee Middle School Friday, Jan. 13 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Ticket prices for the 12th Cherokee Jazz and Blues Festival are as follows:
Friday night Pub Crawl $10 in advance or $15 at the door.
Saturday Jam Session is $10 for non-musicians. Students and kids are free. No advance sale of tickets are available.
Saturday night concert at WITCC $15 in advance and $20 at the door.
Saturday night Pub Crawl $10 in advance or $15 at the door.
Saturday night combo ticket Concert and Pub Crawl $20 in advance and $30 at the door.
Advance ticket prices end at 5 p.m. on Monday, Jan. 9.
Tickets for all events are available at The Copper Cup, State Farm Insurance, and the Cherokee Chamber of Commerce.
For more information on the Cherokee Jazz and Blues Festival go to www.cherokeejazzbluesfestival.com.