Linsey Alexander’s life journey is as familiar as it is timeless: Born in Mississippi, raised in Memphis, and transplanted to Chicago following a girl and work—all part of the historical narrative of African-American blues musicians.
Alexander worked as a cook and later for the Chicago Police Department where he was wounded and received a pension. Times like these would have any other man throwing in the towel and moving to milder climates back home. There must be something about blues music to keep a man going day in and day out after 43 years in the competitive Chicago music environment.
“It’s a job and something to do,” guitarist/singer Alexander said when asked what keeps him engaged. “I make a pretty good buck at it.”
“You have to love the live the life you love and love the life you live,” he adds.
Linsey Alexander and his blues band return to Dreamers Blues Bar in Muskegon on May 14 for a night of world-renown Chicago blues.
Chicago blues bands of today almost always include a steady wallop of bass-driven funk in the repertoire, necessitated to keep crowds interested and gigs coming. Not so, however, with Alexander’s recordings.
“I got no popping bass strings on my records,” Alexander said during a recent telephone interview with #TMGR. “I ain’t trying to take (anything) from the blues. I just leave it where it’s at.”
Where Alexander picks up the blues lineage, in addition to his original compositions often featured on the respected Delmark record label, is in the revered style of none other than B.B. King and Albert King.
“You got to call the blues where it’s at,” Alexander said. “B.B. is the master of the blues. I don’t care how you put it. Chuck Berry might have brought out the rock-n-roll but Albert King and Albert Collins are the blues.”
Linsey Alexander has spent the last 16 years with a steady gig at Chicago’s world famous Kingston Mines blues nightclub. Lately it’s apparent to Alexander he’s not the man he used to be. But even on nights when the crowd starts out lame he says he doesn’t know any other way but to keep on trying to be the best he can be.
“It gets in my blood,” Alexander said. “I just like playing guitar and singing. You just have to push yourself out there no matter what.”
Linsey Alexander and band, 8:30 pm (doors 7:30), Saturday, at Dreamers Blues Bar. Dreamers is located at 978 Pine St 49442 in Muskegon. Telephone: (231) 728-9157
Dreamers Blues Bar FB: https://www.facebook.com/Dreamers-Blues-Bar-211298861412/?fref=ts
Linsey Alexander website: http: www.linseyalexander.com