Prairie Crossroads Blues Society

Champaign-Urbana IL

Blues Happenings

C-U Folk and Roots Fest
The 15th Annual Festival: October 12-14, 2023

The Champaign-Urbana Folk and Roots Festival is an all-volunteer-run, grassroots festival that brings together national, regional and local artists and folk organizations for over 80 high-quality folk performances and participatory activities throughout downtown Urbana.

Folk & Roots Fest 2023

Thanks to all you great fans who came to the
Prairie Crossroads Blues Fest 2023
at Bunny's Tavern

[Rico McFarland Prarie Crossroads Blues Fest 2023]

Thanks to our Sponsors
Bunny's Tavern
First Federal Savings Bank, Peoria Charter Coach
Corson's Music and The Howell Family

Thanks to Everyone!
we appreciate your generous Donations

Check out this video of Saturday's Headliner
Rico McFarland

PCBS Monthly Meeting
5:30 Thursday October 12
Po' Boys - 202 E University Urbana

Music (starts at 6:00) provided by - TBA

Thanks to our friends at Po' Boys for supplying a great place for PCBS to hold most of our monthly meetings. Inside or outside, socially distanced when necessary. Come out as we look forward to future PCBS Blues Jams and Blues In The Schools programs.

As you're probably aware Po' Boys has some great food and cold beverages. Save room for desert, their pies are delicious!

Thanks again to Kandra Miller for stepping into the PCBS Secretary position. We once again have Meeting Minutes uploaded on our web pages PCBS Meetings.

The Painkillers Blues Band on Youtube

Thanks to Kristen, Champaign Underground & The Urbana Park District
The Painkillers Blues Band CHANGE YOUR WAYS Original Music 6/7/23 Neighborhood Nights Concert at Crystal Lake Park Boat House.

[Prairie Crossroads Blues Society Jack Davis Logo]

Renew your Membership

As we were formed in late May & early June of 2010 and signed up many new members at the Urbana Blues Brews & BBQ's that year, PCBS has switched and now all Memberships renew in June. It's time for most of you to renew your Memberships

Visit the PCBS Membership Sign Up Page to Sign up or renew your membership (there's even a way to sign up for multiple years)

Did you get busy in June, you can still renew in September

Want to be part of the community of Blues lovers in the Champaign-Urbana and East Central Illinois area? Sign up to become a member of Prairie Crossroads Blues Society. We are a 501(c)3 non-profit organized to Preserve, Promote and Educate about the Blues.

Since we were formed in 2010 we've been supporting local blues artists share their music with a wider audience. We strive to bring new blues artists to our area, many touring on a regional and national basis. We also have a strong BITS - Blues In The Schools program.

Visit our Education Page to see some of our programs.

Whether you enjoy our jams and shows, or support our efforts to teach youngsters the history and basics of blues music, now is the right time to become a PCBS Member

Membership Options:
Student = $10 per year
Individual = $20 per year
Family = $25 per year
Band = $50 per year
Corporate = $100 per year

For Family, Band and Corporate memberships, we'll contact you for the names of additional members or you can send us that information via email:

Please select your type of Membership
Name on membership

Blues Blast Magazine
features an interview with
Andrew Duncanson

Link to Andrew Duncanson Blues Blast Issue

Interviewed by Mark Thompson
Cover photo by Laura Carbone

Southern Fantasy
Dig 3 BIG Version

Wanna take a ride down South? Here's an alternate version of our song Southern Fantasy featuring some of our favorite friends and collaborators.

Andrew Duncanson - guitar, vocals
Gerry Hundt - guitar
Aaron Whittier - bass
Rick King - drums
Lauren Dukes - vocals

Audio recorded by Alex Hall
Mastering by Justin Perkins

Video by Lola Reynaerts
Thanks to Matthew Meschede


44th Blues Music Award Winners!
presented Thursday May 11

Top Winners Include:
John Németh, Buddy Guy & Albert Castiglia
Tommy Castro Wins B.B. King Entertainer of the Year
Tom Hambridge Wins ‘Song of the Year’

2023 BMA Award Winners

Living Blues
2023 Award Winners

[Living Blues 2023 Award Winners]

30th Annual Living Blues Awards 2023

Shemekia Copeland, Diunna Greenleaf, Christone "Kingfish" Ingram, Buddy Guy, Bobby Rush, John Primer, Charlie Musselwhite, Dylan Triplett, Marcia Ball and Sharde Thomas (Fife), were all Winners

The Blues Foundation
hosted the IBC's in Memphis
January 24 - 28, 2023

Here's the Blues Foundation's announcement of the 2023 Winners

Winner: Mathias Lattin
2nd Place Band: The Cinelli Brothers
3rd Place Band: Dick Earl’s Electric Witness

Winner: Frank Sultana
2nd Place: The Sugar Thieves

Winner: Mathias Lattin

Winner: Adam Karch

Winner: Brian Peters of Deuce ‘n a Quarter

Winner: Josh Hoyer & Soul Colossal – Green Light

Here's a treat for you! PCBS' Kandy Miller went to the IBC's in Memphis in January 2020. Read her review of a CD she purchased from a band she saw in the competition.

Johnny Wheels & The Swamp Donkeys "Live at Pyrate Llama"

Have you ever wondered how many awards Brandon Santini has won from the Blues Foundation?

Search the Blues Foundation database of Award Winners

(It appears Brandon's been Nominated 6 times, but has not won a Blues Foundation Award Yet!)

Blues In The Schools - BITS 2023

[Urbana Public Arts logo]

Thanks to the Urbana Arts & Culture Program, PCBS has received a grant to hold several all-school assemblies in the fall 2023 semester. PCBS will bring several Blues Musicians and a Blues History instructor to three Urbana Elementary Schools; Thomas Paine, Yankee Ridge and Dr. Preston Williams.

To find out more about the Urbana Arts Grants Program, follow this link; Urbana Arts Grants Program

Visit our Education Page to see more of the Blues In The Schools - BITS Programs, PCBS has brought to the youth of our community.

Blues In The Schools - BITS 2022

[Joe & Andy BITS King School Fall 2022]

Prairie Crossroads Blues Society is delighted to announce that Blues in the Schools is starting again! On Friday, September 30 the six-week after-school program began at Martin Luther King School. Thanks to music teacher Cara Maurizi for helping us make it come together. We planned for a group of up to 30 students from grades 4 and 5.

We had two awesome instructors for the program. Bishop Lawton, PhD student in African American History, taught the roots and history of Blues. Joe Asselin, well-known outstanding local Blues musician, taught the Blues harmonica section. Each student receives a Blues harmonica of their own. We are excited!

On December 13 2022, at the conclusion of the Martin Luther King School BITS program, Joe Asselin and Andrew Duncanson put on a concert for the entire school. Here's a few comments; "The concert yesterday at King School was great! Joe and Andy really got the kids into the music! They were a terrific audience, and clapped and sang along."

Another comment "Was an incredible experience. Fantastic time"

In this Season of Year-End Giving, please consider a donation to our BITS Education Fund to keep these programs happening at other area schools!

You can now earmark your donations specifically for our Education programs. It's a great way to help us achieve our mission of educating about the blues and be a part of bringing up the next generation of blues musicians and fans.

Your tax deductable donation to our Education Fund helps to keep these programs alive

This PayPal link will direct your donation in any amount directly to our educational efforts, including our "Blues In The Schools" (BITS) program.

In conjunction with our Prairie Crossroads Blues Fest in August 2019 Mississippi bluesman Lucious Spiller put on two assemblies at Kenwood Elementary School in Champaign.

Check out the awesome Thank You notes from the South Side Elementary School students after the PCBS Spring 2015 BITS program. Thank You Page

Visit our Education Page for details about many of the educational programs PCBS has put on. If you'd like PCBS to conduct a Blues In The Schools program at your school contact us at:

William Marsala
The Kilborn Alley Sessions

Youtube - 6 Track Playlist

Cold Feeling - Andy on vocals

When The Sun Goes Down - Noah on vocals

Sweet Tea - aTrain on vocals

Thanks for all the generous donations at the
Candy Foster Parkland Scholarship Fundraiser

[Candy Foster Parkland Scholarshiup Fundraiser]

PCBS is assisting Candy Foster
we've set up this Paypal Fund to accept donations to the
Candy Foster Parkland College Scholarship Fund

Candy has been handing out scholarships to
Fine Arts student at Parkland College for several years
we're looking to hand out an extra scholarship this year

You can still make a donation using the Paypal Donate button above

News Gazzette story (prior to the event)

Hurricane Ruth
PCBS 1st IBC Challenge Winner

[Hurricane Ruth & David Lumsden competing in 2012 IBC]

David Lumsden & Hurricane Ruth competing in the 2012 IBC

Prairie Crossroads Blues Society held our 1st IBC Challenge at Memphis On Main. Hurricane Ruth won and we sent the band down to Memphis to compete in the International event put on by the Blues Foundation.

R.I.P Dave
you're sorely missed!!
12/1/54 - 3/8/22

[Fauble on Soprano]

Our Blues family is hurting.
Dave Fauble, Long time Sax player
with the Kilborn Alley Blues Band
passed recently

Dave's News-Gazette Obit

Our music community has lost a lot of talent and a lot of love over the last year. In 2020 we lost Alex Jenkins to COVID. In 2021 we've lost Jerry Lee Gingery, Kevin Flowers, Paul Wirth and Dr. Bob McIntyre.

the thoughts and prayers of PCBS go out to their friends & families. We've set up a special page to remember these wonderful musicians and their love of Blues