The Bluescasters
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The Bluescasters

Ann Arbor, Michigan, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2004 | SELF

Ann Arbor, Michigan, United States | SELF
Established on Jan, 2004
Band Blues Rock

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Five Dimes present's Ann Arbor's Bluescasters in a good light; the self-released effort shows off clean tones, crisp rhythms, and generally fine singing. "Spin Club" jumps agreeably, Kerry Adams gives "This Old Guitar" a jazzy hook, and the raw "Get Out Of My Face" carries an unmistakable message. "That's All She Left Me," bolstered by it's push-me-pull-you groove and George Katsakis' sax, has the makings of a soul blues classic. To their credit, the Bluescasters mix up the beats, with big boogies ("Big Brother Blues"), train rhythms (Whiskey Headed Woman"), and '60s funk (applied to "All Shook Up," of all songs).

Tom Hyslop
Blues Revue - Blues Revue Magazine


This, the latest release from Detroit’s own Bluescasters, is a LIVE CD that was recorded in June of 2009 at Guy Hollerin’s in Ann Arbor. It is, without a doubt, THE BEST example of their work, to date. This 16 track CD showcases the boys at their very best, on each and every song. These guys are just plain fun and this release is a testament to that fact!

The CD features the “Bluescasters of old”, Kerry Adams on guitar (now with Justine Blazer), Phil Ryski on the ol’ tin sandwich / guitar/ keys, Harry Rodman on the skins, and Doug Wolgat on bass. I can assure you that the new band is every bit as good as the old and you owe yourself the opportunity to hear them soon.

From beginning to end, I enjoyed each and every track and found myself tapping my toes and bouncing in my chair, right along with the beats. Seldom does this ever happen to me when I am listening to a CD for review. Also rare is the fact that I have listened to it, from beginning to end, on multiple occasions.

This CD will remain in my permanent collection and I would strongly suggest that it become part of yours as well. Get your copy at CDBaby - you will not regret it.

Steve Allen
Detroit Blues Society - Detroit Blues Society


For a good time call The Bluescasters, or better yet, go see them at a gig. These guys know how to have fun and their enthusiasm and talent is infectious. The group is relatively new having formed in the spring of 2004. Each member is a seasoned musician having paid their dues with a variety of Detroit area bands. Their first CD is self released and has just hit the market. The title is Five Dimes.

All good groups need a strong bottom behind their music. The heartbeat here is provided by drummer and vocalist Harry Rodman. Following in the foot-steps of two prior generations on this instrument, Rodman began his training at age ten and now his son is next in line on the drums. By the late 1970s, Rodman was a working musician. By 1986 he set aside music to concentrate on family and career. He returned to the business in 2002 when he joined The Witch Doctors. Doug Wolgat punches up the rhythm with his electric bass. Born and raised in Detroit, the guitar was his first instrument although the lack of bass players provided more opportunity for him so he converted. Wolgat and wife moved to New York for several years and returned to live in Ann Arbor in 1989. His two years playing in another band with Rodman set the stage for the formation of The Bluescasters.

Lead guitar man and vocalist Kerry Adams offers a range of styles and techniques on his instrument. He is a veteran of the Detroit music scene including stints as recording engineer and producer with The Butler Twins, Robert Noll and other Blues Factory Records label artists. Adams recently returned to the Detroit area after an eight year assignment in Arizona with Ford Motor Company. He built a studio named Cell Block #3 and Five Dimes was recorded there. The newest member of the group is Phil Ryski. His thirty years in the Detroit music business serve him well. Ryski is featured on keyboard, harmonica and saxophone. Just to round things out he takes lead vocals with the band as well. He also tells us that he plays the drums and acoustic bass.

The new album Five Dimes has thirteen tracks, ten originals and three covers. Special guest Ross Westerbur joins in on piano and organ. Former band member George Katsakis adds his saxophone to the album and new member Phil Ryski is on harmonica. The spirit and excitement of the band during a live performance translates well in these recordings. I like the versatility of the musicians and the variety they bring to their music. Adams, Rodman, and Wolgat each take lead vocals and all are contributing writers. As I said earlier, “for a good time call The Bluescasters”. Catch them at a gig or contact them via their web site at www.thebluescasters.com.

Wolfgang Spider - Action Detroit


The Bluescasters' self-released "Give Yourself the Blues" is a reminder of why Detroit has always been a major blues town. This is a class-A disc. The quartet of Kerry Adams (guitar, vocals, percussion), Doug Wolgat (bass), Phil Ryski (harmonica, keys, vocals), and Harry Rodman (drums, vocals, percussion), is strong on musicianship and writing skills. Three of the band members take turns on lead vocals and all contribute strong songsmithing. Standouts are the opening "Devil Done Raised Up," with its killer harp/guitar work and the harmonizing vocals, "Read the Fine Print," which reminds a bit of "Take Out Some Insurance" and features excellent slide guitar, "Santa Fe," with its fun storyline, and the jazzy Allmans-like title tune (with exemplary drumming).

One of the standout discs of '06, this self produced gem is one well worth searching out.

Mark E.Gallo, Detroit Blues Society - Detroit Blues Society


Discography

Five Dimes - 2005
Give Yourself the Blues - 2006
LIVE - 2009
BC IV - Expected 2014 release

These albums have been played on local radio stations WEMU, WCBN, WFHR in Dearborn, WLEW in Bad Axe, various NPR stations throughout the state, as well as KCOR in Kansas and several stations throughout Europe, Japan and Australia. All songs are available through iTunes and the discs are available via CDBaby and at all Bluescasters' performances. Five Dimes and Give Yourself the Blues reached the finals of the Detroit Music Awards "Best Blues/R & B Recording" category for 2005 and 2006, respectively. The Bluescasters third disc, LIVE, was released on March 13, 2010. A number of tracks have been recorded for Bluescasters IV, with expectations of a mid-2014 completion.

Photos

Bio

The Bluescasters (mailing address)
P.O. Box 42
Hartland, Michigan 48352-0042

A high energy blues band, The Bluescasters derive their unique style from the diverse backgrounds of it's member musicians. Elements of jazz, R & B, and rock, and are woven into the fabric of their songs. All four members have been active, professional musicians for over 30 years. In 2009 the group added Ann Arbor's legendary jazz guitar master, Brian Delaney. Bass player Doug Wolgat, originally from Detroit, has resided in Ann Arbor since 1987. Multi-instumentalist Phil Ryski supplies second guitar as well as keyboards and harp. Harry Rodman is a third generation drummer in his family. The Bluescasters, all skilled composers and arrangers, use vocal harmony over a groove oriented rhythm section to emphasize the instrumental solos and to drive the dance floor. The Bluescasters reached the 2006 finals in the Detroit Music Awards category of "Best Blues/R & B Artist". Performances since 2010 include the Alpena Blues Festival, Jackson Blues Festival, Tawas Blues by the Bay, Ypsilanti Heritage Festival, Plymouth Festival of Ice, Chelsea Summer Festival, WEMU Blues BBQ, Windsor Blues Festival, Ferndale Blues Festival, and many of the city summer concerts in SE Michigan. They have also shared billings recently with Kim Wilson (Fabulous Thunderbirds) and Jim McCarty (Mitch Ryder and the Detroit Wheels). Several well-known Ann Arbor musicians have sat in with them including Terraplanes frontman Jerry Mack, Al Hill of the Love Butlers, George Bedard of Kingpins fame, virtuoso blues man Chris Canas, former Terraplane Pete Bullard, Rick Humesky and the Xatiable Horn section from the Lady Sunshine Band, Al Jacquez from Savage Grace and Measured Chaos, and boogie-woogie harp man Chef Chris. The main focus of the band is entertaining their audience and filling the dance floor. Even the staff and management at the clubs they play enjoy the party atmosphere and great vibe at their shows.

(See links below for video)