Their sound is so tight you’d swear that they’d been playing together since birth.
KEVIN ROBINSON, DETROIT FREE PRESS
Bill Dye – guitar
Allen Fishell – drums
John Paul Drum – vocals, harmonica
Jim Beisman – piano (tracks 3, 5, 6, 8)
Danny Davidson – guitar
Curtis Rosy – bass
Bill Trumbauer – drums
John Paul Drum – vocals, harmonica
…this crowd was stunned and amazed by John Paul’s own crowd-wandering solos.
JONI MAYBERRY, KANSAS CITY BLUES SOCIETY
John Paul Drum has shared the stage with such notable blues harp legends as; Sugar Blue, Junior Wells, Lazy Lester, Kim Wilson, John Mayall, James Harman, Lee Oscar, and Kansas City’s Patriarch of Blues Harmonica; Provine “Little” Hatch and the list goes on…
John Paul is currently traveling with a style that he has refined and redefined over the past thirtyfive years. Playing inside the Kansas City blues community for over thirty years and “Hangin’” with Kansas City’s world class jazz musicians has produced a powerful force in his music and technique. Dizzying runs and monster chords provide texture and depth to the emotional swirling blues that ebb and flow from his instrument. His vocals are passionate, wry, gruff, sweet and growing. He has captured the Best Blues Band crown in Kansas City three times, but prefers to travel and perform in the cities outside his home turf. A brief tour of Europe (Barcelona, Spain; Paris and Nantes, France; Brussels and Gembloux, Belgium; Frankfurt and Hofheim, Germany) has assured his love of taking his music further afield. Hard Electric or Sunny Acoustic blues make for rousing, entertaining and eclectic time well spent. John Paul Drum is a bluesman in love with the music and one to be watched for many years to come.
John Paul Drum has been playing harmonica for close to forty years. It was one of the first instruments he can remember besides the old upright piano the family had in their home. He‘ll tell you he has only been really playing the “Harp” for around thirty years. While searching for a new way to musically express himself in the early eighties he found the music of the old harmonica masters, ie; Little Walter Jacobs and Sonny Boy Williamson II. From that point on he engrossed himself in the blues harmonica and moved to Kansas City.
There he fell under the wing of KC Blues harmonica man Little Hatch. Hatch informed John Paul that he was the only harp player he cared to share a stage with. World famous Harmonica Bluesman Sugar Blue (of Rolling Stones fame “Miss You”) also tutored John Paul and they have remained friends over the years. After fronting such bands as the Swingin’ Swamis, Lonesome & Dangerous, and The Cat Dancin’ Band, he formed John Paul & The HellHounds in the spring of 1990. As a band leader, it was that band’s eight year stretch that he; broadened his technic and voice, captured three best band crowns, had numerous appearances at the Kansas City Blues & Jazz festival (among others), and gained a reputation as a topnotch musician and entertainer. He has also toured four countries in Europe and was greatly received. Today, John Paul is still hard at work developing a deeper style, both on harp and vocally. He plays with what he believes to be Kansas City’s finest blues musicians; Bill Dye, guitar; Ricardo “Cardy” Quintero, bass; Allan Fishell, drums and Jim Beisman on piano. Though he calls the band the Flying Circus while at BB’s Lawnside BBQ, the traveling band is still known at times as the HellHounds. The band (formally The Houserockers) also backed the late Kansas City Harp legend Little Hatch since the early 1990’s. John Paul also works the acoustic scene with guitarist Bill Dye playing delta blues, early 20’s jazz, western swing, roots, rockabilly, honk tonk and novelty numbers. The duo called The Big Three, as it was started with John Paul, Bill and Washboard Chaz Leary, the washboard master. Since Chaz has moved to New Orleans, John Paul & Bill keep the acoustic fire burning in K.C. and play several dates a month with Allen Fishell rounding out the trio. John Paul’s 21 year stretch at BB’s Lawnside BBQ on Thursday nights have become legendary. He was honored twice by a cover stories by the Kansas City Blues Society celebrating his seven & fifteenth year anniversaries at BB’s. Players and blues lovers from all over the world descend on BB’s to soak up the blues, booze and BBQ.
Shared Bill and Stages
Junior Wells Koko Taylor John Hammond Jr. Provine “Little” Hatch George Jackson
James Harman Band Canned Heat Keri Leigh & The Blue Devils John Mayall Louisiana Red Lee Oscar Tab Beniot Kenny Neal Sugar Blue Terrance Simien Lazy Lester Russell Jackson Chris Duarte Group Son Seals Bobby “Blue” Bland The Fabulous Thunderbirds The Boneshakers Luther Allison Jimmy Thackery The Kansas City Blues Society: Best Blues Band – 1992, 1996, 1997
Mr. Drum is one of probably very few who can point to both e.e. cummings and Sugar Blue as major influences.
TODD FOLTZ, ST. JOSEPH NEWS-PRESS
Letztgenannter hatte sich schon vor Jahren seiner angenommen und ihm seine Tricks auf der Harmonika verraten