Primary Instrument: Guitar, electric
Chicago Joe Jones - Blues guitarist, bandleader, educator
This blues man grew up on the south side of Chicago, down the street from Muddy Waters. He was influenced by live performances of James Brown, The Temptations, The Jackson Five, and blues great Junior Wells. In 1980 he enrolled in the ALR Music School where he studied with Eric Rastus. Since coming to Atlanta, he has worked every venue where the blues are being played. He has backed such luminaries as Chick Willis, Sandra Hall and Little Jimmy Reed, and has opened for Chicago blues greats Pinetop Perkins and Steady Rollin' Bob Margolin.
In 2006, Joe and his band won the Atlanta Blues Challenge. Most of the time, however, you can find Chicago Joe fronting his own band at places like Blind Willie's, Fat Matt's, Maddy's and Marlow's in the metro Atlanta area.
It’s not hard to guess where Chicago Joe Jones grew up, but while he cut his musical teeth in the Windy City, he now calls Atlanta home. He plays blues and rock gigs in clubs and restaurants around town, sometimes seven nights a week, but his days are spent sharing his musical knowledge with others, at his Chicago Joe Jones Rock n’ Blues Camp.
Teaching kids has been a large part of his life. From the age of sixteen, when he taught swimming to younger children as a summer job, Joe has worked with kids. In college he worked as a camp counselor in Wisconsin, and after college he spent three years as a youth pastor at a church in Chicago. The next twenty years were spent teaching in both the Chicago and Atlanta public school systems. Joe began a private guitar studio five years ago and feels he has a special calling to teach kids.
Chicago Joe’s Rock ‘n Blues Camp offers an atmosphere of fun and learning where professional performers and teachers work with campers grouped as bands for a full week, honing each player’s and singer’s skills in order to perform a full set of rock and blues at the Friday night concert.
Players and singers from as far away as New Jersey and California have come to Atlanta to spend a week learning new licks, getting singing tips, and developing their stage presence. Chicago Joe’s Rock ‘n Blues Camp began in the spring of 2005. “Chicago” Joe Jones was encouraged by the parents of some of his students, who believe his approach to teaching and performing merits a wider audience. They believe Joe possesses a unique set of skills and qualities that make him unusually qualified to lead a camp for young musicians who wish to explore first hand the experience of being in a band and playing rock and roll, blues, and jazz.
Joe’s guitar and bass students come to Midtown Music in Decatur for their weekly lessons, but the test takes place the first Thursday of the month at Maddy’s Rib & Blues Joint. That’s where Joe invites his students to join him on stage to go through a few tunes in front of a packed house. He’s found that the public performance is an added incentive for his students to do their “guitar homework.”
The Chicago Joe Jones Band has a fine self produced record out A Gray and Rainy Day, where he displays the musicianship which has garnered him a strong reputation and loyal audience in the Atlanta/Decatur area.Check it out!
Source: Lynda Esquivel
Willing to teach:
Intermediate to advanced students