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""Pianast" seizes the stage! - Victor Wainwright"

No, it’s not Jerry Lee Lewis or Pinetop Perkins smacking the ivories, or Billy Joel, Elton John, or any other non-blues piano man. It’s the Daytona Beach resident Victor Wainwright. Who?

On the title track of his new CD, “Piana from Savannah,” the 24-year old blues, boogie- and roots rock musician pimp-slaps his keyboard as he belts, “I don’t want to hear about ol’ Jerry Lee, the killer is wild but he’s got nothing on me…I’m the ‘Piana from Savannah,’ you can call me Piana King.”

“Yeah, it does sound brash,” Wainwright says with a laugh. “I admire Jerry Lee Lewis for his piano playing but also his confidence in himself. When he gets on the stage he IS the Piana King. I’m not as good an entertainer as Jerry Lee Lewis, but I’ll say that if I get a chance.
“You have to. Elvis, Stevie Ray Vaughan or even local players such as Mark Hodgson – when they get on the stage, they are the man, they are the king. Everyone who has made it in the industry has that frame of mind. That’s how people have this really big presence on stage.”

Wainwright’s brashness doesn’t come only from Jerry Lee. Born about the same time as MTV, Wainwright grew up in Savannah, Ga., watching the music channel and counting Nirvana and Eminem among his heroes. But B.B. King, Muddy Waters, Howlin’ Wolf and other blues men, along with Lewis and Ray Charles, became more influential heroes for Wainwright. For him, it’s a family tradition.

In the liner notes to his new CD, Wainwright recalls the time when he was a child and his grandfather, Jesse Wainwright, sat at the ivories and pounded out “his honky-tonk cat house boogie.” Also, Wainwright father is a guitarist and drummer, and his uncle is a bassist.

“Listening to my Granddad and Dad play, it’s easier for me to identify with the blues and roots music,” Wainwright says.

This Embry Riddle Aeronautical University grad will be doing more than challenging the Killer for the title of “Piana King.” He’s also pursuing his goal to “spread the blues to my generation.”

When I was in school it was easy because I could just play in the dorms and leave the door open, I’d bring a crowd in and we’d talk blues,” Wainwright says. “Most kids once they see it, and hear it, they like it!

"And everyone can relate to the blues. A lot of questions I get have to do with my age. ‘You’re 24, you don’t know (expletive) about (expletive).’ The blues has this great myth that you have to be some old guy from the delta with an alcohol problem. That’s not true. Heartbreak is what thousands of blues songs have been written for, and that’s universal.

“Every man in the world turns into a blues man during heartache – at least for a period.”

-Rick Deyampert

- Daytona Beach News-Journal

"It’s hard to follow the speed limit while this one’s playing!"

I remember the first time I met Victor Waiwnright. I gravitated into a local pub after being seduced by the groove based music coming from inside the smoky bar. I saw customers clapping and swaying to the music.

Lo and behold! There was this robust, clean-cut kid sitting behind a keyboard, his hat cocked to one side. It made me feel good to hear the music from yesterday’s era being brought back to life by this talented young man. I remember thinking, “This kid won’t be here for long.”

So I decided any bar or restaurant that booked Victor knew what they were talking about and that is exactly where you could find me most weekends. It wasn’t hard to find Victor out on the streets. He has been playing on a regular basis for the last two years.

The first CD that Victor sent me, Shoestring, was an example of a born talent, still in its cocoon state. Well, I have news for you: The butterfly has emerged! That young boogie-woogie keyboard boy is all grown up. Now he has given us Piana From Savannah, featuring the King of the Keys. Albert Ammons and Pinetop Perkins would be proud.

Piana From Savannah is a superbly mastered collaboration of Victor Wainwright and respected local musician Stephen Dees. With the help of Greg Gumpel on guitar and mandolin, Brian Kelly on drums, Patricia Ann Dees on sax, Charlie DeChant on sax, Mark Hodgson on harmonica, Justin Olsen on trumpet and joining the whole gang on backup vocals, the CD is a top quality production of Victor’s piano, vocal, and Hammond organ talent. I have no doubt that this will quickly be picked up by a major label.

My favorites: “Piana From Savannah”; “Easy Chair”; “Holy Ground”; “Bug Out”; and “Baby I’m Yours.” You will want to buy this CD now while you can still catch Victor at local venues. Atlantic Records in Daytona on International Speedway is great for finding up-and-coming local artists on disc. Visit for more information. And be careful Cats, it’s hard to follow the speed limit while this one’s playing. - BackStagePass

"Poor Jerry Lee Lewis - Victor Wainwright"

Poor Jerry Lee Lewis. Yep, the piano-stompin' wild man was among the inaugural inductees in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1986, but you know a whole lotta sobbin' has choked his heart every time the Killer has surveyed today's music scene. While even the most gorilla-fingered nu-metal guitarist has a Chuck Berry riff or two tucked into his arsenal, Lewis' effect on modern rock is about as apparent as the Teletubbies' influence.

Well, Jerry Lee, rest easy. Daytona piano slapper Victor Wainwright feels your pain, and so he's thrown a whole lotta Killer spirit into his sizzling new CD, "Piana from Savannah." Yes, Wainwright is an MTV-weened twentysomething, but he's sold his soul to roots rock and rootsy R&B. With area musician Stephen Dees as producer and frequent co-writer, Wainwright pays homage to Lewis on the track "Shoestring" and the raucous title track "Piana From Savannah." He also cranks up some high-octane boogie-billy on "Two-Lane Blacktop."

Look for Wainwright in Memphis, the birthplace of rock n' roll and home of the blues, he'll be relocating there in the fall.
- Orlando Sentinel

""Love the Sinner. Hate the Haircut.""

Reverend Billy C. Wirtz is a comic genius, gifted pianist and American musicologist who defies easy classification. "I like to think of myself as the Victor Borge of the blues," states the Reverend, but Billy goes way beyond Borge both in scope of subject matter (from politics to social commentary) and, of course, in taste. In fact, no theme is too extreme, taboo, or undignified for the Reverend, so long as it garners a good laugh.

Billy C. Wirtz was born in Aiken, SC, on September 28, 1954. One of his most treasured childhood memories was watching the gospel programs broadcasted from the Bell Auditorium in nearby Augusta, GA. In 1963, his family moved to Washington, D.C. where he eventually landed a job at Glen's Music, a record store which catered to black music, including R&B, jazz, and spirituals. "I spent all day long listening to Julius Cheeks, Clarence Fountain, and the Dixie Hummingbirds. I was in heaven," said Billy. In 1971, he attended a gospel concert featuring, among others, the 615 pound Gloria Spencer, billed as "The World's Largest Gospel Singer" and the Mighty Clouds of Joy. "It was like an epiphany for me, a revelation to experience something like that live. It left an indelible impression on me," added Billy. While working at Glen's he was also inspired by recordings of pianists Albert Ammons, Meade Lux Lewis, Big Maceo, and Otis Spann to name a few. He took up the keyboard while in high school, but it wasn't until the tail end of his college career at James Madison University (from which he graduated with a degree in special education) did he play the instrument in earnest.

After graduation, as Wirtz was filling out applications to start a career in teaching, Chicago blues pianist Sunnyland Slim came through Virginia on tour. After attending a performance, Wirtz introduced himself and discovered Slim was headed to the next gig via Greyhound Bus. Billy volunteered to chauffer the blues legend to the next show and struck up a lasting friendship. Later, Sunnyland wrote thanking Billy and invited him to stay at his home if he ever made it to Chicago - an invitation that found Billy heading to the Windy City to accept. He stayed with Sunnyland Slim, learning directly from the master, going to Chicago niteclubs and meeting blues artists he revered as a youngster. This taste of the musicians' lifestyle ignited the idea that he himself might make a living playing the piano. His first official blues band was Sidewinder, a group from his college town of Harrisonburg, VA, and later was able to hook up with the Charlottesville All Stars, a larger ensemble with similar blues tastes.

As the 80's dawned, Billy Wirtz had already earned the reputation of being a gifted sideman and became much sought after by many Washington, D.C area roots bands, including the legendary Root Boy Slim & the Sex Change Band, Evan Johns and the H-Bombs, and the original contingent of the Nighthawks, which included Jimmy Thackery on guitar. By 1982, Billy had grown weary of the incertitude of freelancing and decided to embark on a solo career. About the same time Billy declared his independence his first solo LP was recorded live in a bar in Hickory, N.C., Salvation Through Polyester, on the No Big Deal label of Atlanta. In 1988, Wirtz released Deep Fried and Sanctified on the Kingsnake label - a turning point for him in many ways. "I think we originally pressed about 2000 copies of this before leasing it to Hightone in 1989 and it marked my long and productive association with that great label," said Billy.

He would remain with Hightone for the next dozen years, releasing six more undertakings: Backslider's Tractor Pull, Turn for the Wirtz: Confessions of a Hillbilly Love-God, Pianist Envy, Songs of Faith and Inflammation, Unchained Maladies, Rib Ticklin' plus a compilation, The Best of the Wirtz:15 Years on the Road with a 77" Pianist.

"Wrestling is Real. It's The Rest of it That's Fake"

Pete Backof of Baltimore's City Paper recently pointed out that professional wrestling is one of America's indigenous art forms and even goes on to quote French literary critic, Roland Barthe's commentary on the phenomenon - "the great spectacle of suffering, defeat, and justice." In keeping with his assumed stage identity, Reverend Billy could not help but be attracted to this sport, a modern morality play of good versus evil. "I have to admit I was fascinated to the point of talking my way into the industry. In 1989 I even became a manager for about six months for Diamond Dallas Page. I loved inciting the crowds," he said. After leaving management, he returned to the ring as the house band for TBS's (Turner Broadcasting) Monday Night Wrestling, a three-month stint which accorded him some publicity, especially after a clip of a performance was shown on the Jay Leno Show. "Granted, for a spell, it was a gas. But then it got to be a grind. And besides that, the pay was lousy," said Billy.

Billy soon would have yet another iron in the fire - writing. "I guess it all began about 1993 when I was living in Nashville and documented the passing of Thomas A. Dorsey," he said. A blues scholar of the first order, Billy pointed out that Dorsey in his youth had written some racy blues songs like "It's Tight Like That," but after he embraced religion, was also able to pen some of the greatest gospel hymns ever, including the oft-recorded "Take My Hand, Precious Lord" and "Peace in the Valley."

At the time, Billy never thought that the isolated obituary was going to lead anywhere professionally, but a chance encounter that same year with Bob Doerschuk, then editor of Keyboard magazine, would soon cause him to reconsider. Since Billy was constantly blazing new trails, crisscrossing the United States, Bob suggested that he contribute a regular column entitled "Road Stories," which, from Billy's description, seemed to be along the same lines as the late Charles Kuralt's television series devoted to local human interest tales. When Doerschuck left Keyboard in 1995 to become senior editor of Musician magazine, he invited Billy to reprise his former role with regular installments to the "Backside" section.

Billy continues in this pursuit, freelancing and making contributions to, and the Charlotte Observer. If this flurry of activity isn't enough to keep him occupied, he has also proffered a book-length manuscript Don't Eat At Joe's to a publisher.

Sit On My Faith. The True Story of a Honky Tonk Angel Touched by Reverend Billy

Goateed and copiously tattooed, he is the antithesis of anyone's ordinary concept of a preacher. Yet, as his name implies, Billy often employs this stage persona to set the scene in a song. Like an itinerant revivalist in a carnival tent, he'll begin slowly and gradually build to a rapid fire torrent, as if he were whipping the congregation into a frenzy. Accentuating the lyrics with wild hand gesticulations and exaggerated facial expressions, he becomes a comedian, twisted televangelist and barrel house piano player rolled into one. Just when the crowd senses that he's about to explode in some massive spasm, he'll compose himself and segue into a slow blues number while asking the assembled multitude to forgive him for being "overcome by the spirit." Naturally, his fans, the "faithful," are accustomed to this denouement and even shout "Amen" but not before egging him on to even more histrionics before that ultimate crescendo is reached. "Testify, Billy, testify," they cry, and the Reverend Billy, gathering strength from their exhortations like a hurricane from warm waters, is always willing to accommodate them.

When Blind Pig Records approached The Reverend with the idea of filming a DVD as well as recording a live CD he was both intrigued and excited by the possibilities. The result, Sermon From Bethlehem, documents Billy at his schizophrenic best, careening nonstop through a selection of old comic favorites ("Roberta," "Granny's At The Wheel", "Mennonite Surf Party", "Grandma Versus The Crusher") and soon-to be-classics ("Female Problems", "Do The Toleration", "The King and I") as well as knocking out some of the smokinest blues and boogie woogie piano this side of Sunnyland Slim.

* portions of this biography are borrowed from Larry Benicewicz' article "But Seriously Folks," published in the BluesArt-Journal - Blind Pig Records

"Comedic piano duo rolls into area"

Comedic piano duo rolls into area
For the Herald-Journal
Published: Thursday, August 28, 2008 at 3:15 a.m.

The Holy High Priest of Polyester teams up with the Piana from Savanna this Friday for a boogie-woogie, gut-bustin’ good time at the Handlebar in Greenville.

The Rev. Billy C. Wirtz, who was born in Aiken, has been spreading the gospel of sanctified shake, rattle and roll since the early ’80s by way of his stellar piano riffs and raw comedy.

When the priest teamed up with the young Victor Wainright to form the Roll Models, they became a crowd-pleasin’, knee-slappin’ hit.

Albums such as “Salvation Through Polyester” and “Songs of Faith and Inflammation” show off his gospel-farce character, and his 1990 album, “Backslider’s Tractor Pull,” won an award for Comedy Album of the Year by the National Association of Independent Record Distributors.

But don’t be fooled, Wirtz can put a smile on your face not just through humor, but by his true talent on the ivory keys.

As their Web site states, the Roll Models are “a combination of barroom boogie, gut- bustin’ chuckles, tore down blues, tear-jerkin’ hillbilly, and original compositions.”

Wirths recently spoke with the Herald-Journal:

Question: How would you describe your brand of music?
The Rev. Billy C. Wirtz: At the Handlebar, it’ll be a combo of my original music, which is a variety of country gospel and blues, basically boogie-woogie with my own themes, and Victor, who is an incredible piano player and singer. You’ll get everything from “Georgia on my Mind,” to Jerry Lee Lewis, to truck-driving lesbians. It’s very Southern in its orientation. I was born in Aiken, and it’s great to be from South Carolina. It’s really one of the stranger states of the country. Our threebiggest exports are pecans, fireworks sold out of stores named after people with emotional problems and Confederate flags exported out of Thailand.

But back to music — old school with variety of themes and lots of laughs. With a two-man act, there is a little bit more music. When I was solo, I played piano and had my shtick comedy. But with Victor, he’s scary on piano — incredibly fast boogie player. Wait till you hear Victor play. He’s got the soul of Ray Charles. I’ve played with the best, but I wouldn’t be bringing this guy out with my name that couldn’t get the job done or add to it. It’s really different. You won’t hear “Piano Man.”

Q: I read that you spent time with and learned your most valuable lessons from a legendary blues artist named Sunnyland Slim. How did you come to know Slim?

Wirtz: I was in school in 1978 at James Madison University in Virginia and he came to town. Slim was to the blues what Herbie Hancock was to piano. Turns out Slim needed a ride to his next gig. So I took him to his gig in Lexington, Va. I get along with a lot of older African-American artists because we had the same Southern culture. I knew to respect my elders. So I drive him to his hotel, but he wants me to stay. He was lonely. So we ate dinner, he plays his gig, we go back to the hotel. I go to leave, but he doesn’t want me to leave. If I remember correctly, we rolled one up. I hung out for about an hour until he fell asleep and I left. A few days later, I get a call from Charlottesville (Va.). “Sunnyland is driving us crazy! He wants you to drive him to D.C.!” So I did. We had a great time; hung out three to four days. After I graduated in ’79, I received a letter from Slim saying that I could stay with him in Chicago if I wanted to. So I did. And it was great. I stayed with him for the month of July, and I took lessons from him and Barrelhouse Chuck, who was probably the best piano player in the world. Sunnyland says that I have to play piano and learn to sing, together. That advice changed my life. I moved back to Virginia and started doing that.

Q: What inspired you to form your character and show around a gospel motif?

Wirtz: I sent $3 in the mail for a minister’s license. People started calling me Reverend and it stuck! I put out “Salvation Through Polyester” and it was a hit. I hated writing, but that’s probably what I do as good as or better than music. It is just in the DNA. I don’t know what it is. You learn some in school, but certain people can just put words together. So I had always loved comedy and humor, so the two just morphed together into this act. I decided to play old-school piano and put my own spin on it. The whole outrageous thing — wearing the nurses’ dresses, blow-up dolls on stage. At the time, I was cutting-edge, way over-the-top. I was getting fired from clubs. Now (laughs) I’m just a humorist and musician. I did some comedy clubs, but they aren’t my thing because audiences expect quick laughs, but I like to tell stories. At a place like the Handlebar, you develop a relationship with the audience. You let them in your world and know the good, the
bad, the funny and the stuff that hurts. I had to change what I was doing to succeed in comedy. In 2006, I got a lung infection and had kidney stones and was so drugged on morphine I didn’t even know how sick I was. It was a tough time. It gave me time to up the writing and radio career. It gave me a chance to meet Victor and decide where I was going to go. I’ll go out maybe once a month now, as opposed to being on the road every other week. One moment, you are on stage, playing music and people are laughing and you feel like you are on top of the world. Then it’s over and you are in a hotel, staring at the wall, having to wake up the next day and drive 300 miles. I have a traveling buddy now and a big addition to the act. - Herald Journal

"The Rev. Billy C. Wirtz bringing colorful shoes and keyboard partner to club in Hillsborough"

The Rev. Billy C. Wirtz bringing colorful shoes and keyboard partner to club in Hillsborough

Aug 29, 2008

HILLSBOROUGH -- Two thousand years ago, walking on water was a test of faith. But the Reverend Billy C. Wirtz will be glad to arrive on dry land in Hillsborough Saturday night for his Blue Bayou gig.

"I've got 12 inches here--no really, don't laugh," he said a few days ago from his Cocoa Beach, Florida home where rain and wind from Tropical Storm Fay had knocked out his Internet and land lines.

The Reverend -- "$3 worth of mail-order certificates have allowed him to 'marry about 15 people and bury half a dozen' " -- will turn the Blue Bayou into his First House of Polyester Worship when he and Roll Model partner Victor Wainwright perform their boogie-woogie and blues keyboard ministry.

Georgia native Wainwright, with his "Piana from Savannah," is a perfect fit for the South-Carolina born Master of the 88 Key Disaster.

"He's the future of boogie-woogie," said the Rev of his 28-year-old partner. "If you think my hands are fast, his are three times faster."

"I met the Reverend while driving down International Speedway Boulevard in Daytona Beach," Wainwright said. "I was passing by a bus stop when I saw him standing there with his lime green snake skin shoes, a Hawaiian style shirt, a white pork-pie hat with sunglasses, and a sign he was holding over his head, "Will play piano for Krystal Burgers."

The duo's performance, said Wirtz, will still have "all the outrageous humor" he's infamous for--the zany skits and rapid fire double entendres; and there will be new elements as well.

"When it's called for, my role is to take the 'nuclear boogie-woogie piano' over the top," Wainwright said. "We play super well together, and it's second nature."

Partnering with Wainwright has opened up new venues for the Rev Billy: he can now do a G-rated show if he wants to. And he's already got several careers going.

In addition to his wild blend of southern humor and music, he's a columnist for the Charlotte Observer and a free-lancer for several music magazines. He has a book coming out that collects some of his best work into Songs and Sermons from the First House of Polyester Worship .

He's also a teacher (his college degree was in Special Ed), who continues to hold "Blues in the Schools" workshops all over the country and in Ottawa. He has a nationally syndicated radio show. And he's a human encyclopedia who can tell you about the early origins of beach music--"at the Tijuana Inn at Carolina Beach, right after World War II," and about Chapel Hill legend Doug Clark and the Hot Nuts, and just about any gospel, blues or rockabilly group that ever played a tent or a juke joint.

Wirtz can also tell stories about his six-month stint in 1990 as a manager in professional wrestling, "a dream come true," he said.

His job included quieting the crowd and announcing the wrestlers, "guerilla theater in every spelling of the word."

On his first night a fan "nailed me a hook on the jaw and sent me flying." Standing 6'5" he was still picked up and thrown around "like a dishrag."

But music has always been his life, from the time he was entranced, at age 3, by gospel groups on TV. At 13 he was working in record stores, buying Muddy Waters and Hank Williams: "I didn't go looking for roots music; it found me," he said.

And the flip side of his love for music was a love for comedy--the Smothers Brothers, Frank Zappa.

At age 22 he "drifted around" and found his way into a local hillbilly club in Virginia where he drank enough to get up and play "A Whole Lotta Shakin Goin On." More clubs followed; and in 1979, at age 25, he met Sunnyland Slim and offered to drive the great blues man back up to Chicago. Wirtz ended up staying with--and learning from--the master.

By 1982, Wirtz was ready to hit the road with his one-man show. His Reverend persona, he said, started as a take-off on S.C.-based televangelist Jim Bakker; but the character evolved into a separate reality. And his own brand of humor, said the Rev, is different from that of most other southern humorists.

"I talk about things they don't talk about -- trailer parks -- what I've seen: things that are us, things that the outside world has no idea about."

And the sign that he's made it? Over his 25 years up and down the road, Billy C. has amassed "the finest and most exotic shoe collection...Whites laugh at my shoes," he said. But they got the attention of Ike Turner on a Blues Cruise -- and later in a Tulsa, Oklahoma, hotel lobby. There was even some discussion of removing, forcibly, a pair right off the Rev's feet.

This Saturday night, check out the shoes. And travel along with the music. "When I sit by Billy, with our two keyboards side by side," Wainwright said, "I buckle my seat belt...There's no telling where we're off to next. Mostly it's just wig-fryin' boogie-woogie that goes where it needs to."

- Herald Sun



Salvation Through Polyester - No Big Deal Records August 3, 1983
Deep Fried & Sanctified
January 1, 1989
Backslider's Tractor Pull
January 1, 1990
Turn For The Wirtz: Confessions Of A Hillbilly Love-God
January 1, 1994
Pianist Envy
January 1, 1994
Songs of Faith and Inflammation
March 12, 1996
Unchained Maladies
August 18, 1998
Best of the Wirtz: 15 Years on the Road with a 77" Pianist
February 20, 2001
Rev. Elation
April 22, 2002
Sermon From Bethlehem CD
March 14, 2004
Sermon From Bethlehem DVD
March 14, 2004


Deals Gap 2000
The Deal 2001
Shoestring (Double Disc) 2002
The Pirates - Rocking the Boat 2002
Live at the Library 2003
Piana From Savannah 2005
Delta Highway - Devil Had a Woman - 2007


Group Therapy (Pianist Envy) - 2008


Strawberry Festival (Sonora, CA)
Sonoma Blues Festival (Sonoma, CA.)
Ottawa Blues Fest (Ottawa, Canada)
Toronto Blues Festival (Toronto, Canada)
Springin’ the Blues (Jacksonville, FL)
Riverwalk Blues Festival [Ft. Lauderdale, FL)
Rhythm &Ribs Fest (St. Augustine, FL)
Montreux Jazz Festival (Atlanta, GA)
Chesapeake Bay Blues Fest (Annapolis, MD)
Omaha Blues Festival (Omaha, NB)
Piedmont Blues Festival (Greensboro, NC)
Belle Chere Music Festival (Asheville, NC)
Festival for the Eno (Durham, NC)
Bergen Blues Festival (Bergen, Norway)
New Jersey Folk Fest ( New Brunswick, NJ.)
The Blues and Rock Festival [Strechen, Poland)
Memphis in May Blues Festival (Memphis, TN)
Memphis In May Bar-B-Que Festival ( Memphis, TN)
Memphis Music and Heritage Festival (Memphis, TN)
Beale Street Music Festival (Memphis, TN)
Nashville City Fest (Nashville, TN.)

Clubs and Listening Rooms:
Rhythm Room (Phoenix, AZ)
Freight & Salvage (Berkeley, CA)
Lttlle Fox Theatre (Redwood City, CA)
Kuumba Jazz Room (Santa Cruz, CA))
Palms Playhouse (Winters, CA)
Fine Arts Center (Colorado Springs, CO)
European Street Café (Jacksonville, FL)
Bradfordville Blues (Tallahassee, FL)
Main Street Café (Homestead, FL)
Green Parrot Bar (Key West, FL)
Tobacco Road (Miami, FL)
Bamboo Room (Lake Worth, FL)
Skipper's Smokehouse (Tampa, FL)
Café 11 (St. Augustine, FL)
Darwin's (Marietta, GA)
Red Light Café (Atlanta, GA)
Blues on Grand (Des Moines, IA)
Chord on Blues (St. Charles, IL)
Buddy Guys’ Legends (Chicago, IL)
Fizgeralds (Berwyn, IL)
The Red Key Palace (Red Key, IN)
Slippery Noodle (Indianapolis, IN)
8 x 10 Club (Baltimore, MD)
Rams Head On Stage (Annapolis, MD)
Globe Theatre (Berlin, MD)
The Ark (Ann Arbor, MI)
Rhythm & Blues Cruise (Kansas City, MO)
Knuckleheads Saloon (Kansas City, MO)
Blue Bayou Club (Hillsborough, NC)
Carolina Blues Festival (Greensboro, NC)
Carrboro ArtsCenter (Carrboro, NC)
Cat's Cradle (Carrboro, NC)
Loafers Beach Club (Raleigh, NC)
Double Door Inn (Charlotte, NC)
Evening Muse (Charlotte, NC)
Magnolia's (Asheville, NC)
Jack of the Wood (Asheville, NC)
Sunday Night Music Club (Millburn, NJ
Crystal Bay Club Casino (Crystal Bay, NV)
Hacienda Restaurant (Reno, NV)
The Bottom Line ( NYC, NY)
Dan Lynchs’ (NYC,NY)
Platos; Retreat (NYC, N.Y)
Turning Point Café (Piermont, NY)
Beachland Ballroom (Cleveland, OH)
Funnybone (Pittsburgh, PA)
KClinger's Tavern (Hanover, PA)
Godfrey Daniels (Bethlehem, PA)
River Street Jazz Café (Scranton, PA)
Sellersville Theatre 1894 (Sellersville, PA)
The Handlebar (Greenville, SC)
The Comedy Zone (Memphis, TN)
BB King’s (Memphis, TN)
Douglas Corner (Nashville, TN)
Bluebird Café (Nashville, TN)
Brackins Blues Club (Maryville, TN)
Poor David's Pub (Dallas, TX)
McGonigel's Mucky Duck (Houston, TX)
Casbeer's (San Antonio, TX)
Birchmere (Alexandria, VA)
The Prism (Charlottesville, VA)
Private Party for the Dave Mathews Band (Charlottesville, VA)
Court Square Theatre (Harrisonburg, VA)
Poe's Pub (Richmond, VA)
The Coffee Pot (Roanoke, VA)
Goodfella's (Hampton, VA)
Roanoke College (Salem, VA)
Tractor Tavern (Seattle, WA)
Upstage Restaurant (Port Townsend, WA)
Sisters Coffeehouse (Princeton, WV
Washington &Lee University (Lexington, VA)

Estelles- Belize
Three tours of Norway, multiple dates
Strechen, Poland
Krakow, Poland
The Logo Club-Hamburg, Germany
Andersons- Odense, Denmark
Skynards- Anniston, Alabama

Between them, Rev. Billy and Victor Wainwright have worked as support acts for numerous national artists, among them:
Boz Scaggs ( Two tours, multiple dates)
Bob Dylan
Stevie Ray Vaughn
Buddy Guy
John Anderson
The Beach Boys
Paul Butterfield
ZZ Top
Soul Asylum
Bo Diddley



Dearest Daddy O's and Cuddly Kittens:
Cop a squat, focus your audio, and let me lace up your boots to the serious dusting of the elephants' teeth that's going down with two gone kats known as Pianist Envy.... They are straight out of the 'fridge cool, and solid as the fence around a convent.
Allow me to hip you to the tale of these advocates of the eighty-eights.

Winter, 2007
Rev. Billy C. Wirtz, the High Holy Prophet of Polyester, has been spreading his gospel of sanctified Shake, Rattle and Roll for the better part of three decades.
Although there was [and still is] plenty agitating of the gravel to be done, the miles were getting no shorter, and his health was coming apart like a Goodwill suitcase. He wasn't headed for Crashville just yet, but he knew the turn-off wasn't too far down the road.
The Rev. was beginning to wonder if it wasn't time to pull over to the curb before the dreamboat became a battleship.

The Piana From Savannah..
Just about that time, a young Hepcat from Memphis by way of the Peach State appeared on the Rev's radar, and proceeded to lay down some wig-fryin' boogie woogie, that sent the anointed one into another zip code. They met at a jam session, and shortly thereafter split a gig at a Daytona establishment catering to those with credit ratings in the seven hundreds, and by the end of the night they had the joint rockin' like a roadhouse. Young Mr. Victor Wainwright made those keys jump like a chicken on a hotplate at the county fair. He also had a set of pipes that had the honeys' hiding their wedding rings.

When he and The Rev. played together, and beat it eight-to-the-bar, it was high, fly and too wet too dry, right from Jump street. Before long, from Daytona to Memphis, the gin mill cowboys and young chicklets were diggin' this duo deeper than a backhoe on Ritalin.
With their four hands full of piano, frantic threads, and their stratospheric boogie woogies, the Rev. and Victor decided: "Let's brush it hard, and see where the dandruff falls." The result?

A combination of barroom boogie, gut-bustin' chuckles, tore down blues, tear-jerkin' hillbilly, and original compositions guaranteed to knock the polish off your toes.

Dig the downloaded tunes, snag a glance at the video, and see if you don't find certain portions of your anatomy moving involuntarily. Check our schedule, and put your face in the place when we land in your metropolis for the evening. As the Rev says:

"If we don't turn you on, you ain't got a switch!"