Blues, like many traditional art forms, faces serious challenges. The music is an aural tradition historically handed directly from one generation to the next, one player to the next. It is not written down or formally taught in schools. It is communal music. Unfortunately, in our modern society most of the social constructs which have supported the music have disappeared. Blues U seeks to bridge that gap.
Entering our 8th year Blues U brings together young musicians from around North America for a week immersed in the blues. We spend a week rehearsing in a band under the guidance of highly-decorated blues artists at The MacPhail Center for Music’s state of the art facility in downtown Minneapolis. The bands finish the camp with a public performance at The Hook & Ladder Theater.
Blues U’s work has been formally recognized by Generation Blues, the youth development arm of The National Blues Foundation. Each summer deserving young musicians have their travel, accommodation and tuition covered so they can attend Blues U. These musicians then return home to work as ambassadors for the blues to their peers. These friendships forge a network both locally and across the globe.