Bernard Allison

Sat. Apr 11, 2020 at 7:00pm EDT
21 and Over
10 days away
Price: $20.00
21 and Over
  • Get Tickets
  • Details
Event Stats
10 days away
Price: $20.00
21 and Over
Event Description
Bernard Allison

Bernard Allison

Bernard Allison totes the same smokin' six string shooter that his late father Luther Allison assaulted the blues with. Bernard is blessed with his father's soulful voice, spiritual devotion, and a musical freedom which experiments with the blues. Born in Chicago on November 26th, 1965, he was the youngest of nine children. Bernard was first introduced to the roots of black music and the art of the electric guitar by his father, the late great Luther Allison. Like Ken Griffey Jr. hanging out in baseball locker rooms as a youth. Luther's son was the kid running on stage throughout the band's set. Experiences like that profoundly affect one's aspirations. "That's when I decided that I wanted to be up there like him. I think I was seven."

I didn't start to play until I was maybe ten years of age" Bernard recalled. "I picked up the guitar and listened to his records." While Luther was absent, his record collection played a major role in shaping the son's direction. Bernard listened to his dad's influences like Magic Sam, Otis Rush, T-Bone Walker, Lightnin" Hopkins, and BB King. He also got influenced by the next generation that followed, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Johnny Winter, and Jimi Hendrix.

Bernard made his first appearance on record at age 13, when he played on a live LP his Father recorded in Peoria,IL. "When we moved to Peoria, Dad came home preparing to do his live album in Peoria, I hooked up the amplifier and guitar in the basement and started playing his first record, Love Me Momma, note for note. He freaked out and said tonight you're gonna record with me. That was my first recording, I played "You don't Love Me No More" and "Sweet Home Chicago"

Bernard Allison totes the same smokin' six string shooter that his late father Luther Allison assaulted the blues with. Bernard is blessed with his father's soulful voice, spiritual devotion, and a musical freedom which experiments with the blues. Born in Chicago on November 26th, 1965, he was the youngest of nine children. Bernard was first introduced to the roots of black music and the art of the electric guitar by his father, the late great Luther Allison. Like Ken Griffey Jr. hanging out in baseball locker rooms as a youth. Luther's son was the kid running on stage throughout the band's set. Experiences like that profoundly affect one's aspirations. "That's when I decided that I wanted to be up there like him. I Think I was seven."

I didn't start to play until I was maybe ten years of age" Bernard recalled. "I picked up the guitar and listened to his records." While Luther was absent, his record collection played a major role in shaping the son's direction. Bernard listened to his dad's influences like Magic Sam, Otis Rush, T-Bone Walker, Lightnin" Hopkins, and BB King. He also got influenced by the next generation that followed, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Johnny Winter, and Jimi Hendrix.

Bernard made his first appearance on record at age 13, when he played on a live LP his Father recorded in Peoria,IL. "When we moved to Peoria, Dad came home preparing to do his live album in Peoria, I hooked up the amplifier and guitar in the basement and started playing his first record, Love Me Momma, note for note. He freaked out and said tonight you're gonna record with me. That was my first recording, I played "You don't Love Me No More" and "Sweet Home Chicago"

Luther bought Bernard his first guitar a Fender Stratocaster and he told him to first get an education. At eighteen years old Bernard joined his father on stage at the 1983 Chicago Blues Festival. Then one week after he graduated from high school, Bernard got a call from KOKO Taylor asking him to be her lead guitar player.

Bernard joined Koko Taylor's Blues Machine for three years. "Koko and Pops Taylor taught me the do's and don't's of the road, Bein" really careful and watching people. They were like my Mom and Pops, I was able to see different cultures it was a great education. We backed Willie Dixon and Koko was the only group I played with besides my father's band."

The 1980's became Bernards classroom as both a learner and teacher. Relationships in the 80's with Johnny Winter and Stevie Ray Vaughan expanded Bernards guitar foundation. For a year and a half Bernard lived and played in London and Ontario. Then in 1989 Bernard flew to Europe to record with his father and where Bernard was asked to lead the band. Bernard like his father adopted permanent residence in France. A recording of the furious collaboration between Luther and Bernard at the 1989 Chicago Blues Festival can be heard on the Luther Allison Album "Let's Try it Again" on Ruf Records.

One year later, Bernard released his first solo album in 1990 with the significant title The Next Generation. Allison followed that with Hang On, Funkifino, No Mercy, Born With The Blues, Keepin' The Blues Alive, Times Are Changing, Across The Water, Storms Of Life, Kentucky Fried Blues, Higher Power, Triple Fret, Energized, Chills & Thrills, The Otherside, Live at the Jazzhaus, & In the Mix.

One look at that DVD and it’s obvious that Bernard has inherited Luther's knack for igniting audiences; but he's no clone of his famous father. He is definitely blazing his own path with a style that reflects a unique mix of traditional and modern influences. The Allison torch has been passed, and it's clear that Bernard takes his role as its bearer very seriously. He's assumed the challenge of keeping the blues alive and growing - a commitment he renews every time he takes the stage.

One year later, Bernard released his first solo album in 1990 with the significant title The Next Generation. Allison followed that with Hang On, Funkifino, No Mercy, Born With The Blues, Keepin' The Blues Alive, Times Are Changing, Across The Water, Storms Of Life, Kentucky Fried Blues, Higher Power, Triple Fret, Energized, Chills & Thrills, The Otherside, Live at the Jazzhaus, & In the Mix.

One look at that DVD and it’s obvious that Bernard has inherited Luther's knack for igniting audiences; but he's no clone of his famous father. He is definitely blazing his own path with a style that reflects a unique mix of traditional and modern influences. The Allison torch has been passed, and it's clear that Bernard takes his role as its bearer very seriously. He's assumed the challenge of keeping the blues alive and growing - a commitment he renews every time he takes the stage.

That musicianship is no clearer than on his current record, Chills And Thrills. After 17 years of recording experience, Bernard has perfected his sound. Instead of just using his guitar, Bernard has become mature the artist who uses the full palate of musical colors in his band to paint his stories. If there ever was a CD for all occasions, this is it.

It’s got the chill songs to curl up with on a rainy day, or the thrill music you’ll blast when you’re driving late at night. By adding the rhythm guitar of Bernard’s guitar soulmate Eric Gales, every song explodes into a guitar player's head trip. The title cut opens the record with Bernard’s trademark funk meets blues sound. that signature sound permeates other tunes like “Compromising For Your Need,” “Heart of St. Paul,” and “Groove With Me,” Bernard’s treatise on the modernesque blues he’ll continue to play around the world. But Bernard’s got so much more. On “So Devine” Bruce McCabe’s piano and Jose James’ alto sax steals the show. On “Just Me And My Guitar,” Bernard shows off the frantic slide techniques he learned in the 1980’s from Johnny Winter. For slow blues, Bernard and pianist Rusty Hall turn in a first rate guitar and piano performance on “That’s Why I’m Crying.” But any fan of Bernard Allison knows that every show or record comes with one of his father’s songs. Here, Bernard reprises Luther’s 1980’s tune “Serious,” played with Bernard’s eerie, Luther-like vocal attack. In addition, Bernard strips “Serious” down to just piano and guitar in his after hours styled closer.

Amid all the daily pop culture pressures to be the next American Idol why does Bernard stay rooted in the blues? “The blues is my roots. Regardless of how far outside of the blues I reach for tones, I can’t ever leave the blues. Whenever I play, all those guitar parts are Luther Allison coming through me. My dad was the same way, he wasn’t all blues. He loved Otis Redding or Chuck Berry. I’m just showing where my influences come from. And respecting the people who got me to this point.”

Comments
Reserve Tickets
General $20.00
Venue Details
Map of Venue Location.
Moondog's 378 Freeport Road
Pittsburgh, PA 15238