Suncoast Blues Festival Kicks Off Jan. 27

A line-up of musical artists fills the Sarasota Fairgrounds for a bluesy weekend.

By Kay Kipling Photography by Courtesy Photo January 3, 2017

Selwyn large dctlas

Musician Selwyn Birchwood

Image: Courtesy Photo 

The month of December saw the annual Bradenton Blues Festival take over the Riverwalk with a full day of music. Now it’s Sarasota’s turn, with the third annual Suncoast Blues Festival on tap at the Sarasota Fairgrounds Jan. 27 and 28.

The line-up of music artists performing starts at 6 p.m. Friday, Jan. 27 and includes the Balkun Brothers, the Kat Riggins Band and Chris Duarte. On Saturday, the blues commence at noon and carry on through 9 p.m., with Tommy Z, Charles Wilson, Annika Chambers, Studebaker John, Dwayne Dopsie & the Zydeco Hellraisers and Selwyn Birchwood all playing their hearts out.

Chris duarte iv4rbd

Blues musician Chris Duarte

Food, beverage and non-food vendors will be on site all weekend, and RV and tent camping is available at the fairgrounds for those who really want to make a vacation of it. A portion of the proceeds benefits Family Promise of Sarasota, which helps families with minor children who have lost their housing get back on their feet, so you can feel you’re doing good at the same time you’re enjoying the blues.

Dwayne dopsie  the zydeco hellraisers 3 pvgqw1

Dwayne Dopsie & the Zydeco Hellraisers

Image: Courtesy Photo 

But wait, there’s more. Evie’s Tavern on Bee Ridge Road has been leading up to the festival with a free concert series that started in November. The final concert of the series takes place Jan. 25 at Evie’s and features the Allstar Blues Band. And there are after parties following the actual festival, at both the 5’Oclock Club on Hillview in Sarasota and at Aces Live on Palma Sola Boulevard in Bradenton.

Tommy z 2 e1454507346804 rcikaa

Tommy Z, performing Jan. 28

Image: Courtesy Photo 

For full details on the fest, head to, or you can call Roseanne Herndon at (941) 758-7585 for tickets, camping info and more.

Filed under
Show Comments