The original Ann Arbor Blues Festival is widely recognized as the first “electric” blues festival in North America, which, in its early years, featured perhaps the greatest lineup of blues musicians ever assembled – including B.B. King, Muddy Waters, Howlin’ Wolf, Freddie King, Big Mama Thornton, Luther Allison and many others. Expanded in 1972 and renamed the Ann Arbor Blues and Jazz Festival, it quickly became one of the country’s most popular music festivals, playing host to superstars like Ray Charles, Al Green, Miles Davis, Bonnie Raitt, Dr. John, Koko Taylor, Etta James and more.
In 2019, to honor the 50th Anniversary of this history-making event, we are planning a celebration to rival those legendary festivals for which Ann Arbor was once known, with a lineup whose appeal will span generations.Though few of the headliners who appeared in 1969 are still with us, a cadre of their descendants will be, performing traditional blues classics in their honor, while a new generation of musicians will offer contemporary interpretations of the blues, all inspired by the masters who appeared in Ann Arbor a half-century ago. The 2019 Ann Arbor Blues Festival is a vibrant, multi-generational showcase of musicians celebrating the joy of the genre . . . from yesterday, today . . . and tomorrow.
2019 Ann Arbor Blues FestivalLine-Up (***subject to change and addition)
Friday, August 16th
- The Allman Betts Band
- Bernard Allison
- Thornetta Davis
- Alex Johnson
Saturday, August 17th
- Benny Turner
- John Primer & The Real Deal Blues Band
- Mindi Abair and the Boneshakers
- Lindsay Beaver
- The Sam Lay Band
- Eliza Neals and the Narcotics
- Kara Grainger
- Doug Deming & the Jewel Tones
Sunday, August 18th
- Laith Al-Saadi
- Danielle Nicole
- Vanessa Collier
- Harper & Midwest Kind
- The Altered Five Blues Band
- The Ann Arbor Music Center All-Stars
A Word about the Charities We Support
Did you know that $2 from every ticket purchased goes to support charitable organizations?
Because we’ve all received so much out of music, the Ann Arbor Blues Festival proudly supports the Sweet Relief Musicians Fund, which provides financial assistance to all types of career musicians who are struggling to make ends meet while facing illness, disability, or age-related problems. We’ll be donating $1 from every ticket sold to this worthy non-profit organization.
We’re also committed to finding a cure for one of the most prevalent forms of muscular dystrophy there is – Facioscapulohumeral Muscular Dystrophy (or FSHD). As the world’s largest research-focused patient advocacy organization for FSHD, the FSH Society is accelerating the development of treatments and a cure for the nearly one million people worldwide who are affected by this muscle-wasting disease. We’ll be donating $1 from every ticket sold to the FSH Society.
If you’d like to add your own contribution to these organizations, please make your selection above.
The Allman Betts Band / Benny Turner / Laith Al-Saadi / Danielle Nicole / Mindi Abair and the Boneshakers
Bernard Allison / Thornetta Davis / John Primer & the Real Deal Blues Band / Lindsay Beaver / The Sam Lay Band / Eliza Neals and the Narcotics / Kara Grainger / Doug Deming & The Jewel Tones / Vanessa Collier / The Altered Five Blues Band / The Ann Arbor Music Center All Stars / Harper and Midwest Kind / Alex Johnson