Seaham and the deep South don’t exactly go hand-in-hand.
But East Durham duo Auld Man’s Baccie are bringing the warmth and groove of the genre alive for North East audiences.
Since forming in 2014, Davey Curtis and Nick Phillips have built up a firm following with their acoustic roots, American and traditional blues performances.
As well as playing a mix of delta, Chicago and Gospel, they pen their own tracks, which they perform at blues festivals across the country including Reivers Rock and Blues Festival.
They are also regulars at the Harbour View Blues Club in Roker and the Rosedene Acoustic sessions.
After reaching number 13 in the Institute of British Blues Broadcasters chart with their first album, they’ve just released a second album, The Church of Lost Souls, which has been chosen as pick of the month by the institute meaning it’s being played by all the major blues DJs.
Nick said: “I’d known Dave for years and we were both at a local open mic night in 2014. He got up to sing and I’d just bought a resonator guitar so was concentrating on slide and we decided to get together to form a duo. I’d played in a rock and roll band for years but grew up listening to blues and it never left me.”
The duo draw influences from a wide range of acts including Lightning Hopkins, Elmore James, Sister Rosetta Tharpe, Peter Green and, most notably, Muddy Waters.
“Me and Dave are big Muddy Waters fans and his music was pretty much the first we started to play. We play sitting down, like a lot of the old guys did, and we started playing with a table and a picture of him on it.”
Nick says the pair are enjoying being part of a wave of emerging blues acts in the region.
“Blues’ popularity seems to come and go every ten years,” he said. “It’s having a resurgence at the minute and it’s great to see a lot of young artists getting into that scene.”
•A promotions party for The Church of Lost Souls will be held on Tuesday, October 25, at 7pm at the Rhubarb and Custard coffee shop in Seaham.
Tickets are £4 from the band’s Facebook page or visit www.auldmansbaccie.co.uk/