Bradley N. Litwin is an exceptional singer and guitarist whose aim is the broadcast and preservation of the extraordinary invention, passion and humor embodied in early, Roots Blues and Jazz. Though some of the most infectious music, it is seldom heard in mass media. For Litwin, threading this rich heritage back into the fabric of mainstream consciousness is an ongoing labor of love.
Having grown up in a family of classical musicians, Litwin’s interest in Folk and Blues music took shape as a teenager, in the late 1960s. In the mid-1970s, while the proprietor of a stringed instrument making shop, Litwin became friendly with numerous, traveling, circuit musicians. Their anecdotes fed his fascination with the genius of those seminal performers of the 1920s–30s, whose recordings he studied intensely. Today, he presents recreations of these masterworks, along with a few of his own, for enthusiastic audiences all over the United States.
In addition to formal concerts, festival performances, and dozens of shows at elderly facilities, Litwin conducts interactive workshops and community outreach residencies for all ages. Workshops are usually held in intimate settings, tailored to explore the elements of self-expression that define the quintessential Blues experience.
Bradley N. Litwin is a recipient of a Meet The Composer grant, a member of the Philadelphia Folksong Society, the Ohio Arts Presenters Network, and the Pennsylvania Arts On Tour roster.
Bradley N. Litwin - guitar and howling
accompanied on occasion by:
Michael Salsburg - violin
Jim Parker - tuba
Brad Litwin’s critically acclaimed albums have made waves in radio and press since “I’ll Give you The Bus Money, Honey!” his 1998 debut release, receiving a host of accolades in praise of his personally authentic approach to the material.
His second release, "You Rascal You" was named “Best CD of 2002” by Mississippi’s TheBluesSite.com. Both of these albums bring the sounds of the ‘20s and ‘30s right back home.
“These tracks are a virtual soundscape of times gone by, with Litwin's unaffected vocal and guitar style imparting a welcome honesty to the repertoire. He is a master of detail who often simply pulls out all the stops in a torrent of emotion, humor and heartache.”
-Jon Cooper, producer
“Imagine Victrola record scratch noise over Bradley’s performance, and you begin to think you’ve traveled back in time, because man, he sure does sound like the real thing.”
-Buddy Osthaus, Blues fan
Full album samples at http://www.jujubee.com/samples.htm
"2002 Best CD of the Year!"
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"2002 Best CD of the Year!" "In this wild world of blues, we have men who can play the blues and t...
"2002 Best CD of the Year!" "In this wild world of blues, we have men who can play the blues and then we have bluesmen! Mr. Litwin clearly draws the line. Most CD's have to grow on the owner… not this one! When you put this CD in the player you'll make time to hear the rest… Man this guy has style and is certainly one of the best guitar players I have ever heard. The sounds of the '20s and '30s [are] back again! With outstanding vocals, heavy horns (in places) and dynamics that are outrageous!…"
You Rascal You
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"He calls himself "The Self-made Madman…. There is nothing nuts about the new CD, You Rascal You… if..."He calls himself "The Self-made Madman…. There is nothing nuts about the new CD, You Rascal You… if anything, it is a comfort to hear such a wide variety of the old styles so faithfully preserved. Sure, bluesman Blind Blake's music is available on CD if you want to hear the original's picking, but there is nothing like the excitement of witnessing complicated finger picking live. While Litwin is preserving the old, he's letting it breathe, too, with arrangements that are original yet not anachronistic…"
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"…you'll dig Bradley N. Litwin, a style hopping acoustic and electric guitarist who's also a strong ..."…you'll dig Bradley N. Litwin, a style hopping acoustic and electric guitarist who's also a strong singer. Litwin honors his influences on You Rascal You with covers like Blind Blake's "Diddy Wa Diddy" and "Too Tight Rag" and strikes up the band with a cooking version of the title tune (which features a weird, wonderful horn arrangement) and a tiptoe through the standard "What Are You Doing New Year's Eve?" A fun record."
Presenter's Comments I
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“In a world where acoustic music is too often synonymous with low-budget pop, Bradley Litwin is a br...“In a world where acoustic music is too often synonymous with low-budget pop, Bradley Litwin is a breath of fresh air. Or, should I say, salt peanuts. …Litwin doesn't just play Cab Calloway, Fats Waller and Robert Johnson, he's right up there with them... I've yet to see an audience he didn't knock the socks off. He's also a genuine nice guy who is a delight to work with. Whether it's a workshop or more traditional concert setting, Litwin never fails to educate, inspire and entertain. He's the cat's pajamas, the real deal.”
Director, Philadelphia Folksong Society
Presenter's Comments II
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“Brad Litwin's knowledge of the great blues masters and his love for the music and the folklore is s...“Brad Litwin's knowledge of the great blues masters and his love for the music and the folklore is so apparent in his delightful presentation. He is the real deal, a modern-day bluesman who plays and sings the old songs with uninhibited joy. And that joy is contagious.”
Folk Music Producer/Host
WXPN, 88.5 FM Philadelphia
Presenter's Comments III
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“Bradley N. Litwin is an extraordinary talent. In the demanding arena of live radio broadcast he pr...“Bradley N. Litwin is an extraordinary talent. In the demanding arena of live radio broadcast he produced one of the finest shows in the ArtMusicCoffeehouse.com archives. His strong, expressive voice, masterful guitar stylings, and enthusiastic musical scholarship delighted our audience, and continues to please our listeners who discover his recordings.”
Don Slepian & Jan Julia, Hosts
Live in Pittsburgh
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”Combine the old with the new and you get something people of all ages can enjoy. This musical man ...”Combine the old with the new and you get something people of all ages can enjoy. This musical man did just that with his soothing jazz notes and toe-tapping blues beats [at The Quiet Storm, 3/26/03]. Calling himself a "self-made madman," Bradley N. Litwin strums his hollow-bodied electric guitar and belts out the tunes on his latest CD. Recently named "Best CD of 2002" by TheBluesSite.com, You Rascal You is a mix of vintage blues, stride and jazz with a catchy southern twang, including his version of Blind Blake's, "Mr. Diddy Wa Diddy." Litwin is happy with the way this album turned out, since his style of music -- around for decades -- seems to have withstood the boundaries of time…”
Pulp Magazine, Pittsburgh, PA
Most shows are 1920s-30s ragtime/jazz and stride/blues favorites:
You Rascal You
Way Down Yonder in New Orleans
Too Tight Rag
Baby Please Come Home
'Tain't Nobody's Business If I Do
Love In Vain
Mr. Diddy Wah Diddy
Singin' The Blues 'til My Baby Comes Home
Minnie The Moocher
Typical set is 60-80 minutes or 2 x 45 min. sets in a night