WEST JEFFERSON — For those looking to feel the soul and groove of the blues, Saloon Studios Live will host Grammy-award winning guitarist Paul Nelson of the Johnny Winter All Star Band on Friday, Aug. 9.
The concert, scheduled to be the second performance of the WE2019 Experience Festivals, will feature Nelson’s solo work, as well as classics from blues-legend Johnny Winter. With years of experience touring nationally and internationally with Winter, Nelson said concert-goers can expect a jam-packed show at Saloon Studios Live.
“I like to mix it up for the audiences so there’s something in there for every person that comes,” Nelson said. “It’s a real exciting show.”
Nelson appeared alongside Winter on shows such as Late Night with David Letterman and performed with some of the most iconic guitarists in the world, including Buddy Guy, Eric Clapton and Vince Gill.
In 2015, Nelson was awarded a Grammy for producing and performing on Johnny Winter’s album, “Step Back.”
“To be able to produce with (Winter) was a huge honor, and then winning the Grammy was just over the top,” Nelson said. “That was the first Grammy that Johnny had ever gotten for his solo stuff, so I was pretty proud of that.”
Nelson first met Winter while recording in the studio for some session work, he said. Winter’s producer asked Nelson to write a song, which got Winter’s attention, and days later, Nelson was on tour with Winter in England.
“It happened very quickly,” Nelson said. “The rest was history.”
Though Nelson said he knew from the start that he wanted to be a musician, he said much of his passion for the blues was inspired by Winter.
“His love for traditional blues was contagious,” Nelson said. “It’s the basis for everything. It’s the soul — it’s the feeling.”
Nelson’s musical career began as a session musician, recording on tracks with various bands and artists, which ultimately led to him meeting and playing with legends such as Winter and Clapton.
“Now, I’m out on my own,” Nelson said. “It’s really taking off. I’m headlining festivals, I’m headlining shows — this is a whole new turn for me, going out solo. This really is fantastic.”
The WE2019 Experience Festivals will feature a number of big names in the music industry, and Nelson said he’s excited to share the stage with everyone slated to perform during the weekend.
“I’m really looking forward to this show,” Nelson said. “We’re in good company.”